Letter: Kathy Stewart Shupe, Sterling

Editor: I recently read in the that President Trump’s Department of Education is abandoning the crackdown on fraudulent practices at for-profit colleges started by the Obama Administration.

Many unscrupulous for-profit “educational” institutions take advantage of veterans and other non-traditional college students by steering these students to loan programs that leave them deep in debt when (or if) they complete the for-profit college’s program. Worse, these programs often fail to lead to recognized professional certification for graduates or even award credits that can be transferred to a public or nonprofit college. I guess we shall see if the Trump administration succeeds in lowering the standards governing for-profit colleges. Meanwhile, at the state level, the Virginia General Assembly passed a bill this year to require significant disclosures to students by out-of-state colleges operating in the state. The bill, sponsored by Del. Kathleen Murphy, requires that these colleges provide enrollment agreements that clearly define the transferability of their credits, their accreditation status, their eligibility for student loans, and other vital information.

These agreements will help many students make better decisions about how to pursue and finance their plans for higher education. This is especially important for working class students and our military veterans.

I want to commend Del. Murphy for sponsoring HB 2040, the Education Transparency Law, that Gov. McAuliffe recently signed into law in Sterling. If the federal government is abandoning its commitment to protect Virginians from post-secondary education fraud, it is up to our state legislators to fill the gap.

Kathy Stewart Shupe, Sterling

8 thoughts on “Letter: Kathy Stewart Shupe, Sterling

  • 2017-05-22 at 12:16 pm

    They should add in how many recent graduates are actually employable too. Most collages are a fraud. Well said Ms. Shupe.

    • 2017-05-24 at 7:06 am

      Most collages are works of creative art. Some are good, others, not so good. Collages typically contain newspaper and magazine clippings, photographs, ribbons, and found objects. That doesn’t make them fraudulent. There is a lot of fraud out there – drain the swamp – but don’t look for it in collages.


      Great letter Kathy!

  • 2017-05-22 at 12:25 pm

    As a good Democrat, you should understand that a good Republican feels that many things are best left to States Rights and not the Federal Government. The Federal Government often appears to be abandoning States when the State should assume the role of protecting itself in the first place in lieu of relying on the Federal Government. You had your 8 years, so expect some adjustments.

  • 2017-05-22 at 6:13 pm

    Great point Chris.

    How about some liberal outrage at colleges with multi-billion dollar endowments charging $40k/year for students to attend.

    Wake up educrats! Your system is a racket.

    • 2017-05-24 at 7:45 pm

      Colleges train leaders and highly skilled workers who make America great! If “most collages are a fraud,” then most college graduates have fraudulent educational backgrounds. I don’t think thats a defensible opinion.

  • 2017-05-25 at 5:47 pm

    Johnathan, Outside of technical, scientific, med, engineering fields, etc, most ‘collages’ (that’s a spoof on myself brother) are not worth the expense, or the huge debt burden being placed on these folks. Student Loan debt is now well north of a T-T-Trillion bucks. That’s with a T. The only people doing well in this issue are the fat cat profs with tenure, the administrators, and of course, the federal government — who just happened to nationalize the student loan racket in the early part of this decade. Go figure that the student loan debt action is one of the few profitable areas of the Feds.

    I went to college. I incurred a hefty student loan debt, which I paid off in full. Not a single program ever prepared me for the real world. Not one skill, class, whatever you want to call it. It was simply a check the block exercise to see if one can start and finish something. Plus, I needed a degree for my commission.

    I know a whole lotta’ folks who skipped college, and they’re all doing really well. Indeed, some are doing far better than I am. Lack of a degree has never slowed them down. They’re jamming. In contrast, a family member graduated from one of the Seven Sisters with a degree in International Affairs. I hired her on as an intern one summer. I was shocked at how unprepared she was for a real world business environment. How to compose a letter. Read, evaluate, and then communicate an administrative rule or political issue. Christ, even how to interact with the public.

    I don’t blame her. I blame the fancy uptight school she attended. They filled her head with so much crap, one of my employees commented, “She’s going to be very disappointed when she graduates and discovers the Secretary of State job is already filled.” Guess what she’s doing right now? She’s going back to an IT school, desperate to obtain a real world, marketable skill.

    College is not for everyone, despite the propaganda. I tell every high school kid; get a real world skill – engineering, mining, mechanic, plumber, welder, nursing, IT (of course), robotics, math, science and geology – anything but something in the liberal arts degree spectrum.
    I think the state should pile on more requirements per the subject of the above letter: All colleges should be required to post their immediate past graduating class’ employment data. Let the people themselves decide what’s a fraud or not.

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