The Growing Scandal in Student Loans

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Education Secretary Margaret Spelling heads to Capitol Hill tomorrow to answer questions about student loans.  With tuitions rising toward $50,000 a year at top institutions, student lending is an $85 billion industry. Investing in education is a lot like buying a car, with discounts and interest rates as important as faculty qualifications or student performance.  Private lenders compete with the federal government, and friendly college administrators have taken gifts, trips and stock options.  New York State Attorney General Andrew Cuomo is just one investigator into reports of unethical and possibly illegal practices that include kickbacks to college loan officers who've recommended private lenders to parents and students. Yesterday, Theresa Shaw, Spelling's top student-loan overseer announced her resignation. How can students and parents tell if they're getting their money's worth?  Is the Department of Education doing its job?  Why is it so expensive to go to school?

Credits

Guests:
Robert Shireman - Clinton campaign - @bob_shireman, Jonathan Glater - Business writer for the New York Times, John Dean - Counsel to then-President Richard Nixon - @JohnWDean, Malcolm Getz - Professor of Economics at Vanderbilt University, Anya Kamenetz - NPR - @anya1anya

Host:
Warren Olney

Producers:
Vanessa Romo, Christian Bordal, Frances Anderton