Thousands more students to get debt relief – Press Enterprise

Accelerated debt relief could be available for tens of thousands of additional former students and graduates of the Corinthian Colleges chain after a new government investigation found the Santa Ana-based company lied about job placement rates in two additional schools.

The U.S. Department of Education and California Attorney General Kamala Harris announced on Tuesday that a joint investigation found Corinthian’s Everest and WyoTech schools inflated their placement rates between 2010 and 2013.

There were three Everest Colleges in the inland region – one in San Bernardino and two in Ontario – before they close on April 26.

Previously, federal officials had only determined that Corinthian’s Heald College lied about placement rates.

The new findings allow student borrowers from Everest and WyoTech to join Heald students under the federal government’s streamlined debt forgiveness program. These three colleges enrolled approximately 85,000 students in California.

As part of the “defense against the refund claim,” students can seek a discharge from their federal loans if they can show that a school used illegal or deceptive tactics. It is a very difficult process for students to navigate on their own.

But by deciding that the for-profit company Corinthian had used illegal tactics, the federal government is allowing affected students to have their loans canceled through a much simpler process requiring only a simple attestation form. .

The findings of the new survey apply to Everest and Wyotech locations in California, as well as Everest University’s online programs.

For example, Everest College reported a 100% placement rate for graduates of its medical billing program in Anaheim. The actual rate was 75%, the survey concluded.

WyoTech’s Automotive Technician Program in Long Beach has claimed an 80% placement rate. The actual rate, according to officials, was 26%.

New U.S. Secretary of Education John King said that while career colleges have an important role to play, “too often bad actors like Corinthians have attacked some of the most vulnerable students. and the most hardworking of our country”.

“Corinthian has gone after vulnerable students who are now buried under mountains of student debt,” Harris said. “The findings of today’s joint investigation will expand the pool of Corinthian students eligible for simplified student loan relief options, helping them to rebuild their lives and pursue a brighter future.”

Santa Ana-based Corinthian, which once had 107 campuses, closed all of its schools and declared bankruptcy in May.

Students who were enrolled at the time of the closures may also have their loans cancelled, the Department for Education announced in June. This also applies to students who have withdrawn within 120 days of the closing date.

As of November 4, the federal government had received approximately 10,100 “closed school” leave applications from Corinth alumni. About 5,300 have been approved, adding up to $70 million in canceled loans.

About 6,400 claims are being submitted under the “reimbursement defense” law, a spokesperson said. Officials have “made significant progress in their review,” the department said.

Pamela W. Robbins