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October 17, 2018 at 10:49 am

Brookings Quotes Vedder on For-Profit Colleges

A Brookings Institution report quoted Dr. Richard Vedder, Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Economics at Ohio University, in an article headlined “Betsy DeVos and her cone of silence on for-profit colleges.”

Not all that long ago, Republicans believed that career programs that used billions of federal dollars to train college students in specific job fields ought to be held accountable for ensuring that their programs did, in fact, prepare their graduates for gainful employment. No more.

Conservative pundits echoed the GOP candidates and lawmakers. In The Weekly Standard, Andrew Ferguson sarcastically asserted that the gainful employment regulation stemmed from the fact that “the proprietaries [for-profit schools] have been making too much money”[37] from students and the federal government for their Democratic critics. Breitbart claimed that “there are plenty in the Obama orbit who simply think the words ‘for-profit’ and ‘education’ don’t belong together under any circumstances. They want to snuff out the sector.”[38] The Wall Street Journal maintained that the gainful employment rule was a front in “a White House war to kill for-profit private education.”[39] Writing in the respected Chronicle of Higher Education, Richard Vedder, a conservative economist at Ohio University, explained in 2010 that “for-profit companies are merely part of the capitalistic Evil Empire that Obama despises. Apollo Corporation, Corinthian Colleges, Bridgepoint Education, Kaplan University—these companies are bad mainly because they are in the business of trying to create wealth for private investors.”[40]

Read more at the Brookings Institution.

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