November 27, 2015

Obama Takes Steps against Education Programs That Recruit Veterans

veterans 2
In honor of Veterans Day, the White House is announcing new measures to shield veterans from shoddy colleges and vocational schools.

On Wednesday the administration will release an updated GI Bill Comparison Tool that will allow veterans to compare colleges based on veteran-specific graduation and retention rates. In addition, the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Federal Trade Commission will sign an agreement to strengthen oversight and enforcement to protect against programs that engage in deceptive or misleading advertising, sales, or enrollment practices aimed at veterans.

The White House is also announcing that public colleges in all 50 states now allow recent veterans and their dependents to attend at lower, in-state tuition rates, regardless of their state of residency. That milestone, required under a federal law, was supposed to have been reached by July 1, but the Obama administration extended the deadline to January 1, to give colleges more time to comply.



Open Letter From the President of University of Phoenix

uop logoDear alumni and students,

Recent negative press stories gave voice to critics who questioned the quality of the education you received at University of Phoenix. I know your degree has value and you demonstrate that every day. After 16 years at the University of Michigan, I came to University of Phoenix as President last year to lead an institution that is uniquely positioned to help more working adults attain college degrees, rebuild and restore the American middle class, and change the lives of students, their families and future generations through higher education.

As I met University of Phoenix students, I quickly learned that not only were 76% of you working while earning your degrees, but you were raising families (67% of you have dependents at home). You are a diverse student body (45% underrepresented minorities, 19% military students, and 66% female), and you are true pioneers (60% first-generation college students), changing the trajectory of your families forever.

I know from conversations with many of you that much of your success is due to sheer determination, perseverance and hard work. You also told me of other reasons, including the University’s passionate practitioner faculty who work in the same industries in which you aspire to grow your careers, your dedicated advisors, 24/7 technical support teams, digital library and curriculum based on how adults learn.

New government data indicate that progress is being made by University of Phoenix and its graduates. The White House College Scorecard shows that among public and private universities with more than 15,000 students, University of Phoenix alumni median earnings are well above the national average (within the top 25 schools), and that the University’s tuition and fees are below the national average among private universities with more than 15,000 students. The University’s official three-year federal student loan cohort default rate is 13.5%, slightly above the national average of 11.8%.

My vision for University of Phoenix is to be recognized as the most trusted provider of career-relevant higher education for working adults. Dr. John Sperling, our founder, realized nearly 40 years ago that working adults needed a university tailored to their needs. He helped bring early innovations later adopted by traditional higher education, like hybrid learning and the ability to earn a degree online, because of the unprecedented access and opportunity they offered working adults. I am committed to carrying on that legacy.

The University’s recent graduation rates (41% for bachelor’s and 54% for master’s) are lower than some traditional universities. I know it is much harder to earn a degree while working and raising a family. I am proud of you, our alumni, and we at the University are committed to doing an even better job ensuring more of our current students join your ranks. I’m willing to work with all of you—along with our faculty and U.S. employers—to innovate and further enhance our focus on academic quality and career relevance to ensure that University of Phoenix continues to provide access to career-relevant, affordable higher education for working adults.

Thank you for serving as a living testament to the value of accessible higher education for diverse working adults and what this can do to change the lives of families and future generations in this country.

Signature of Timothy P. Slottow

Timothy P. Slottow
President | University of Phoenix

Link to Letter:

Gainful-Employment Rule Survives Court Challenge

gainful emplymentThe U.S. Education Department’s gainful-employment rule is one step closer to taking effect.

A federal judge on Tuesday rejected a serious legal challenge, brought by the Association of Private Sector Colleges and Universities, to the controversial rule. The lobbying group’slawsuit was the highest hurdle remaining for the proposed rule, which will judge career-oriented programs on their graduates’ ability to repay their student loans. The rule is slated to take effect on July 1.

The department originally introduced the rule in 2011. The effort was dealt a major setback a year later, when a section of the rule was thrown out as a result of an earlier court challenge by the association, the main lobbying group for for-profit colleges. The group’s second challenge, to a revised rule, used many of the same arguments, asserting that the department had exceeded its authority in issuing the rule and that the rule was capricious and arbitrary.

In his ruling on Tuesday, Judge John D. Bates of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia dismissed those claims, saying the association “throws a host of arbitrary-or-capricious arguments against the wall in hope of a different outcome. None of them stick.”

Arne Duncan, the secretary of education, said in a written statement that the ruling was “a win for America’s students and taxpayers.” He added that every student “who enrolls in college of any kind deserves a fair shot at a degree or credential that equips them for success,” and said the department would “continue to fight until that’s a reality.”

Also in a written statement, the private-sector association’s general counsel, Sally Stroup, said the group was “disappointed” in the court’s decision and was considering its options. “Indeed, as numerous commentators have observed, the primary impact of the regulation will be to deprive hundreds of thousands of students of access to higher education,” she added.

The final rule, which was released last fall, is expected to cause 1,400 programs, 99 percent of them at for-profit colleges, to be put at risk of losing eligibility for federal student aid.

The victory for the department occurred on the same day a committee of the U.S. Senate approved a spending bill that would ax the gainful-employment rule and the department’s college-ratings plan.

Link to Article on Chronicle:

GOP budget would block key Obama higher ed regulations


Take your higher education regulations and shove them, Obama administration.

Republicans in the House of Representatives didn’t use exactly those words in the 2016 spending bill for the Department of Education they released Tuesday, but the message they delivered couldn’t have been much clearer.

The bill drafted by Republican leaders of the House Appropriations subcommittee that oversees spending for education, health and labor programs would bar the Education Department from using any of its appropriated funds to carry out existing regulations related to “gainful employment” for graduates of vocational programs, state authorization, teacher preparation, and the credit hour, and to implement President Obama’s envisioned system to rate colleges and universities.

Essentially, it would block virtually all efforts by the Obama administration to hold colleges more accountable for how they use federal funds, which Republican lawmakers (and many college officials) have opposed as overreaching, misdirected and unlikely to work. Republicans have opposed most of the initiatives previously, but now that they control both houses of Congress, they are in a better position to actually block some of them — or at least force President Obama to horse-trade for some of them in negotiations over the spending measures.

Full Article Inside Higher Ed:

Unfair targeting of For Profit Colleges


For-profit colleges have been targeted by government officials, including President Obama and California Attorney General Kamala Harris, who claim these schools take advantage of low-income students, burdening them with student debt and limited job prospects upon graduation (if they graduate at all). Yet, these same officials are unfairly aiming their crosshairs at for-profit institutions while applying weaker standards and greater accommodation with not-for-profit schools.

For-profit schools enable low-income and racial minority students, including many who are non-traditional, to gain practical, skills-based training that better equips them for the marketplace relative to many traditional academic paths. As Manhattan Institute adjunct fellow Judah Bellin points out, New York State’s two-year, degree-granting, for-profit colleges graduate a higher percentage of their students than any other higher education sector, including private non-profit colleges.

A generation ago, for-profit schools awarded virtually no bachelor’s degrees. Today, for-profit colleges account for 20 percent of associate’s degrees and 7 percent of bachelor’s degrees. As STEM careers become ever more important, critics should take note that for-profit colleges produce 51 percent of associate degrees in computer science and information technology, according to research by Harvard University.

The article continues to shed light on the vast benefits and results provided:

Link to article:


Special Discount to Private Equity Investment in For Profit Education Conference in July!

capital roundtable

As a MarketDrivenEdu subscriber, you’re eligible to receive $400 off the standard registration rate for The Capital Roundtable’s full-day conference on “Private Equity Investing in For-Profit Education Companies.”


Coming up on Thursday, July 30, in midtown Manhattan, this year’s conference focuses on —

Bridging the Educator-Employer Disconnect


Chairing this conference is Lawrence Shagrin, managing partner at Millpond Equity Partners, a private equity firm that invests exclusively in the education, training, and outsourced services sectors. Larry also serves as a partner at Brockway Moran & Partners, a middle-market private equity firm with over $1 billion under management.


Lawrence and 20 other for-profit education experts will provide sound insights on how to take advantage of the significant marketplace activity beyond the post-secondary space.


As a MarketDrivenEdu subscriber, you qualify for a special ultra-low rate — $400 off!  To register just call Joanna Russell at 212-832-7300, ext. 0, or email her at


Please be sure to reference MarketDrivenEdu and this email to qualify for this special rate. This rate is not available online.


Lawrence and the panelists will answer key questions such as these —

  • What new developments have taken place in the for-profit education world to bridge the gap between what educators deliver and what employers want?
  • What does the much-discussed acquisition of by LinkedIn portend for other subscription-based digital training companies?
  • How are education companies differentiating their services through catering to the demand for mobile learning?
  • What’s happening to the value in ROI of a traditional four-year degree, and what companies are taking the lead with employer and student-focused alternatives?
  • What are the major talent development needs among major employers, and which service providers offer the most help?
  • How important is it that corporate training providers go beyond content delivery to offer monitoring, tracking, and assessment?
  • In the K-12 space, how early are educators thinking about future career paths? How are they using partnerships to answer the need?
  • What are the key criteria that can help you judge a middle-market education company deal?
  • What are the most important things a firm has to get right when exiting an investment in the education space?
  • Where do new investors in education often make mistakes, and what are the truths that newcomers must learn?
  • What are the potential traps and pitfalls that can befall for-profit education investors, and how can they be avoided?

And they call themselves Non Profit…


Here are the 10 highest paid college presidents, via The Chronicle:

  1. Shirley Ann Jackson (Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute) — $7,143,312
  2. John L. Lahey (Quinnipiac University) — $3,759,076
  3. Lee C. Bollinger (Columbia University) — $3,389,917
  4. Amy Gutmann (University of Pennsylvania) — $2,473,952
  5. Charles R. Middleton (Roosevelt University) — $1,762,956
  6. Susan Hockfield (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) — $1,679,097
  7. David W. Leebron (Rice University) — $1,522,502
  8. John E. Sexton (New York University) — $1,404,484
  9. Marc Tessier-Lavigne (Rockefeller University) — $1,381,341
  10. Richard C. Levin (Yale University) — $1,369,856

Read more:

Kaplan Sells it’s 38 campus to Education Corporation of America

education corp

Graham Holdings, the former parent company of The Washington Post, has agreed to sell 38 physical campus operations of its Kaplan education business to Education Corporation of America, a Birmingham, Ala.-based operator of private accredited colleges in the United States.

The deal, made public Thursday in a Securities and Exchange Commissionfiling, includes all Kaplan College campuses. The all-stock transaction would give Kaplan a preferred-equity interest in Education Corporation of America. Financial terms were not disclosed.




Who is your real competition for students? New study Non-Profit vs. For-Profit


Velocify and Enrollment Resources recently conducted a new “secret shopper” study of enrollment tactics at non-profit and private sector schools. The results detail how each group’s inquiry response strategy and user experiences compare and will provide you insights on who your real competition is. You’ll also question long-held beliefs about the admissions performance of your competitors. Download the report at

I reviewed this in detail and found in interesting & worthwhile.

Click Here to view the results of the study

Leadscon Discount! Ending soon.


At LeadsCon, we’re constantly striving to provide you with content and resources that will make an impact on your business. We’re excited to announce that one of Google’s brightest performance marketing minds has joined our incredible speaker lineup in Las Vegas! To that end, we’d like to highlight Nicolas’s session which will provide you with unique and groundbreaking behind the scenes insights surrounding the lessons learned from some of Google’s top advertisers.

Session Feature at LeadsCon: How The Best Performance Marketers Win: Lessons Learned From The Best Google Advertisers In The World
In today’s digitally fragmented world, marketers thrive on innovation and finding the best ways to engage customers. But if you’re not making the desired impact, it may lead you to ask how your top competitor is getting most of the available leads. Likewise, you may wonder what they’re doing differently, and whether you can do it too. Join Nicolas Darveau-Garneau as he shares a strategic look at winning strategies from some of Google’s biggest advertisers and unveils the top five secrets of all successful performance advertisers.
If you know your going, sign up now before the rate goes up, and this member link gives you an additional $100 off.

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