Silver lining in college scam?

By BRYAN DAVIS EDITOR,

News broke this week of one of the largest alleged college admissions scams in U.S. history.

Over four dozen people have been charged so far as a result of an exhaustive investigation by the FBI.

The charges allege that multiple wealthy parents, including Full House actress Lori Loughlin, bribed coaches and college admissions officials to falsify tests, label the students as athletic recruits and other things in order for their children to get into colleges where they would have otherwise been rejected.

American college graduates and non-graduates currently have racked up over $1.5 trillion in student loan debt, according to CNBC.

There has been a lot of talk about figuring out a solution to this problem.

Hopefully, a strong economy with a healthy job market will lead to more aggressive payments on the part of former students like myself, but this could be an opportunity for the courts to grant some reprieve to less privileged former students like myself.

I was raised in Yazoo County and was one of four children.

My parents both worked hard to put food on the table every day.

We all attended public school from start to finish.

There were times when we had money, and there were times when we didn’t.  It was a happy childhood, despite the fact that we didn’t have the latest Nike shoes or Tommy Hilfiger clothes. And we didn’t really want that stuff anyway.

But when it came time for college, it was a mighty struggle to figure out every single way we could get grants and scholarships.

My sister, Bre’, was the first on either side of our family to finish college. My older brother Chris was the second, and I was the third. My younger brother Alex also got a college degree.

Some of it was paid for by scholarships and grants, but we also had to take out student loans in order to survive and finish.

We’re all still struggling with those loan payments today.

There are thousands of families out there with similar stories. People who did not have wealthy parents who could bribe people into letting us in or help us cheat on admissions tests. Not that we would have ever considered doing such a thing.

If those who are charged are found guilty, there will likely be massive fines imposed on these individuals.

That money should be used for some good in society.

It should be placed into a scholarship pool, where honest Americans who amassed massive debt just to have a chance at fulfilling the American Dream can apply to get relief from their student loans.

It won’t cure the $1.5 trillion problem, but it would make life a lot easier to live for a lot of Americans.

The less wages being siphoned by Navient, and other student loan lenders, and the more those earnings are spent with local businesses, the better the economy will be.

 

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