Policy Issues

Our Letter to VA Regarding Hussian College

July 19, 2023 Joseph L. Garcia, Executive Director Education Service Veterans Benefits Administration Via email Re: Hussian College Closing Dear Director Garcia, We write to urge the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and the appropriate [...]

Our Follow-Up to VA re: Risk-Based Survey SOPs

July 10, 2023 James Ruhlman, Deputy Director Program Management Education Service Veterans Benefits Administration Via email Dear Mr. Ruhlman, In response to concerns we raised about the standard operating procedures for the risk-based surveys as [...]

Our Follow-Up to VA re: Risk-Based Survey SOPs

June 1, 2023 Joseph L. Garcia, Executive Director Education Service Veterans Benefits Administration Via email Re: Risk-Based Surveys Dear Director Garcia: Thank you for your response to our previous letter concerning the implementation of risk-based [...]

Coalition Letter on Maryland 90/10

March 27, 2023 Emily A. A. Dow, Ph.D. Assistant Secretary for Academic Affairs Maryland Higher Education Commission (MHEC) 6 N. Liberty St., 10th Fl. Baltimore, MD 21201 By Email Dear Dr. Dow, The undersigned organizations, [...]

Our Letter to VA re Risk-Based Survey SOPs

March 7, 2023 Joseph L. Garcia, Executive Director Education Service Veteran Benefits Administration Via email Re: Risk-Based Surveys Dear Director Garcia: We thank you and your team at the Education Service for making progress towards [...]

Veterans & Military Organizations’ Letter to the Dept. of Education re: “Low-Financial-Value” Colleges

The undersigned military and veteran organizations write to provide comments on the above-referenced Request for Information (RFI). We agree with the Department that low-financial-value programs “may cause particularly acute harm for student loan borrowers who may struggle to repay their debts after discovering too late that their postsecondary programs did not adequately prepare them for the workforce” and that “taxpayers also shoulder the costs.” We write specifically regarding the impact on student veterans and military-connected students.

Coalition Letter for Higher Education Accountability Priorities

As 40 organizations working on behalf of students, consumers, veterans, faculty and staff, civil rights advocates, and researchers concerned about unaffordable student debts and predatory practices, we write to share our coalition’s higher education priorities. As Congress continues to consider long-overdue reauthorization of the Higher Education Act (HEA) and to evaluate other higher education proposals, we strongly urge you to support policies that better protect students - especially low-income students and students of color - and the taxpayers who invest in them.

Letter to NC-SARA re: Proposal to Elevate SARA’s Consumer Protection Standards

The State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement (SARA), administered by the National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements (NC-SARA), lowers barriers for schools to offer online programs in multiple states, easing the way for institutions to expand the reach of their online programs. SARA’s impact is immense - almost 6 million students were enrolled in online programs at more than 2,300 SARA participating schools in Fall 2020, including 1.6 million students enrolled in online programs based outside of their state.1 Every state except for California is a SARA member. 2 However, the agreement’s standards set an extremely low bar for consumer protection, leaving millions of online students vulnerable to abuse by unscrupulous schools.

Our Letter to VA with Additional Information Regarding Bay State College

January 9, 2023, George O’Connor Assistant Commissioner for Academic & Veterans Affairs Department of Higher Education Commonwealth of Massachusetts Via email Joseph L. Garcia, Executive Director Education Service. Veteran Benefits Administration Via email Re: Bay State College Dear Mr. O’Connor and Mr. Garcia...

Results of Our Review of the Texas SAA’s Correspondence Regarding Approval of Retail Ready Career Center

Before it was raided by the FBI in June 2022, the House of Prayer Bible Seminary (HOP) reportedly received approximately $7 million in GI Bill funds from VA to educate veterans. Our review of the Georgia SAA’s approval and oversight correspondence regarding HOP revealed several concerns in the GI Bill approval process. We reviewed more than 100 pages of correspondence and documents to, from, or about HOP spanning 11 years; the Georgia SAA provided these documents in response to our public records request of June 2022, when the news of the FBI raid became public.

Letter to VA Regarding Bay State College

November 21, 2022 George O’Connor, Assistant Commissioner for Academic & Veterans Affairs Department of Higher Education Commonwealth of Massachusetts Via email Joshua Jacobs, Senior Advisor for Policy Performing the Delegable Duties of the Under Secretary [...]

Letter to VA Regarding Florida Career College

November 21, 2022 Betsy Wickham, Bureau Chief State Approving Agency Florida Department of Veterans’ Affairs Via email David Salgado, Director Veterans Education Program Texas Veterans Commission Via email Joshua Jacobs, Senior Advisor for Policy Performing [...]

Letter to VA Regarding Full Sail University

November 21, 2022 Betsy Wickham, Bureau Chief State Approving Agency Florida Department of Veterans’ Affairs Via email Joshua Jacobs, Senior Advisor for Policy Performing the Delegable Duties of the Under Secretary for Benefits Veterans Benefits [...]

Letter to VA Regarding ASA College

November 21, 2022 William Clarke, Veterans Program Manager Bureau of Veterans Education New York State Division of Veterans’ Services Via email Joshua Jacobs, Senior Advisor for Policy Performing the Delegable Duties of the Under Secretary [...]

Inside Higher Ed: Controversial Transfer Agreement Ends

“California never should have signed a contract with a predatory for-profit college that was sued by law enforcement for high-pressure enrollment tactics and failing to disclose job prospects to student veterans and military students,” Carrie [...]

Background on the Protect the GI Bill Act: Understanding Section 1016 In 2016, a unanimous Congress enacted the Career Ready Student Veterans Act, preventing GI Bill funding to be wasted at education programs which leave [...]

The Capitol Forum: Perdoceo Education Corporation: Data Shows that Deferral of $39M Title IV Funds in 2019 Saved Company from 90/10 Violation; Company Likely Needs to Find New Funding Sources Ahead of 2023 When New Law Closing 90/10 Loophole Takes Effect

"Perdoceo thought that its purchase of Trident University International would cure its problem with AIU’s nearly 90 percent 90/10 ratio as of 2019,” said Walter Ochinko, Research Director at Veterans Education Success. "However, Percdoceo failed [...]

Our Letter to DoD & ED Asking Them to Improve PSLF

May 7, 2021   The Honorable Miguel Cardona Secretary of Education Department of Education 400 Maryland Avenue SW Washington, DC  20202   Secretary Lloyd Austin US Department of Defense 1000 Defense Pentagon Washington, DC 20301-1000 [...]

Be Careful of Income Sharing Agreements

By Alex Kish   At this point in the game, it might seem cliché to talk about the impact COVID-19 has had on higher education and how students have been forced online.  But that doesn’t [...]

Schools with Repeat Law Enforcement Settlements

Many Corporate School Chains Repeatedly Settled Lawsuits for Misleading Advertising, High-Pressure Recruiting, and False Certifications On March 9, 2020, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) notified five institutions of higher education that it possessed evidence [...]

11th Circuit ruling in Great Lakes

We filed an amicus brief about veterans' need for Public Service Loan Forgiveness, in support of a legal case regarding students' rights to use state law to sue loan servicing companies that fail to honor [...]

Inside Higher Ed: Maryland Closes 90-10 Loophole

“This groundbreaking legislation makes Maryland the first in the nation to stand up for veterans and stop predatory schools from cheating them out of their hard-earned GI Bill,” said Ramond Curtis, state policy manager for [...]

Press Release: Veterans Education Success Praises Decision by the Department of Veterans Affairs to Suspend New GI Bill Students from Enrolling at the University of Phoenix, Career Education Corporation Institutions, Bellevue University, and Temple University

For Immediate Release              Contact:  Carrie Wofford | President (202) 838-5050 Tanya Ang | Vice President (202) 838-5050 March 9, 2020  Veterans Education Success Praises Decision by the Department of Veterans Affairs to Suspend New [...]

Lima Veteran Goes to Washington

A terrific news story about a brave veteran, Tasha Berkhalter, whom we brought to Washington to tell Congress what they need to do to help veterans with student debt caused by college fraud. Lima Veteran [...]

Veterans Education Success Letter in Support for SB 1544

"We at Veterans Education Success are writing in support of Senate Bill 1544. This bill will protect veterans and servicemembers from fraud and abuse by predatory colleges that target them with aggressive and deceptive recruiting just to get their GI Bill."

New York Times: Protect Veterans from Fraud

On January 1, 2020, the New York Times ran a full-page editorial by the Editorial Board featuring Veterans Education Success' work: "Nevertheless, a 2018 report from Veterans Education Success, a nonprofit that provides legal help [...]

The 85-15 Rule and Related GI Bill Safeguards

The impact of the 85-15 rule—a requirement that education programs enroll at least 15% non-veterans to ensure schools are not bilking VA, as occurred after WWII—has evolved over time. This Issue Brief presents the Congressional [...]

Inside Higher Ed: House Dems’ Vision for Higher Ed

"The College Affordability Act also would make the federal student loan program more generous for student borrowers....the bill has received endorsements from Third Way, the Thurgood Marshall College Fund, Veterans Education Success, the National Association [...]

Learn about the Protect the GI Bill Act

Overview of The Protect the GI Bill Act Gives Student Veterans the Same Rights as Other Students Contained within the larger Johnny Isakson and David P. Roe, M.D. Veterans Health Care and Benefits Improvement [...]

HR 4162: GI Bill Planning Act of 2019

This bill: extends in-state tuition at public universities and colleges for all veterans, eliminating the provision that had required veterans to enroll "within 3 years" of leaving military service; gives servicemembers more time (6 months) [...]

The Military Lending Act and You

This post was originally published by Military.com on August 13, 2019.  The Military Lending Act and You By Mike Saunders, Director for Military and Consumer Policy, Veterans Education Success As an active-duty service member, you [...]

Army.com List of Partner Schools Exposed

The Federal Trade Commission shut down a number of copycat military websites in September of 2018. This report examines one of those websites, Army.com, and the list of partner schools it displayed while in operation. [...]

HR 4085: Student Veteran Empowerment Act of 2019

We are grateful to the GOP leadership of the House Veterans Affairs Committee for this excellent bill, which: Helps solve the problem of GI Bill overpayments by requiring monthly enrollment verification; Ensures that "deemed approved" [...]

HBO: Wyatt Cenac’s Problem Areas: The Cost of College

The HBO news show, Wyatt Cenac's Problem Areas, worked with Veterans Education Success to expose for-profit colleges' targeting and fraud against veterans.  They interviewed student veterans we are helping and whistleblower former college recruiters [...]

Protecting Servicemember Loan Rates

Military and veteran groups wrote to the Department of Defense thanking them for automating SCRA rights and asking for restitution to servicemembers who previously were not accorded to these rights that they were entitled to. [...]

Advice for Accreditors

Recruiting practices by institutions of higher learning is an area fraught with deceptive and misleading practices, due to a number of competing incentives. While veteran recruiting practices differ from civilian recruiting in some respects – [...]

The Hill: Protect the Military Lending Act

Standing with the troops requires more than lip service. It also requires action. When the Pentagon found that predatory payday loan shops and unethical car dealers were trolling military bases and aggressively targeting the troops [...]

Press Release: Veterans and Military Service Organizations Urge Education Department Not to Rollback Student Protections and Quality Controls in Program Integrity Rules

September 14, 2018 For Immediate Release:                                             Contact: Carrie Wofford, (202) 838-5050   Veterans and Military Service Organizations Urge Education Department Not to Rollback Student Protections and Quality Controls in Program Integrity Rules  Veterans also Travel [...]

VA Proposes to Waive Ethics Rule for VA Employees

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) intends to waive the application of applicable Federal regulations (see SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION) for all VA employees who receive any wages, salary, dividends, profits, gratuities, or services from, or own [...]

Press Release: Education Secretary Betsy DeVos’ Rescission of Gainful Employment Fails Statutory Obligation to Stop Waste, Fraud, and Abuse and to Protect Taxpayer Dollars – and Knowingly Puts Veterans and Servicemembers at Risk

September 13, 2018 For Immediate Release:                                           Contact: Carrie Wofford, (202) 838-5050 Education Secretary Betsy DeVos’ Rescission of Gainful Employment Fails Statutory Obligation to Stop Waste, Fraud, and Abuse and to Protect Taxpayer Dollars – and [...]

CAPPS v. DeVos & Bauer v. DeVos | DOCUMENTS

This brief is submitted by the National Consumer Law Center (“NCLC”) and by 17 legal aid and other non-profit organizations that work on behalf of students and student loan borrowers, consumers, low-income individuals, teachers, college [...]

CFPB and DoD: Protect Servicemembers’ Rights

38 veterans and military service organizations call on the US Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and US Defense Department to stop the rollback of servicemembers' rights under the Military Lending Act   Resubmitted Sept. [...]

Storm the Hill | PROSPER Act | After Action Report

In June, representatives from America's largest Veterans Service Organizations stormed Capitol Hill to encourage lawmakers to oppose a proposed piece of legislation called the "PROSPER Act," a terrible bill which would have decimated military families [...]

The Hill: A Call To Service Without Debt

As a country, we have encouraged our children to strive for bright futures. We prod them to go to college, pursue apprenticeship programs, and otherwise climb the ladder of opportunity by seeking educational opportunities beyond [...]

Inside Higher Ed: A Low Bar for Bar Passage

Nearly nine out of 10 law school graduates who sat for the bar exam within two years of graduating passed it, according to new data from the American Bar Association. But more than 10 percent of [...]

Veteran Preference in FTC Oversight

Veteran and Military organizations ask the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce to prioritize veterans and service members in Federal Trade Commission oversight.

The Hill: The Real Tax on Troops

A recent blog post by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) highlights an alarming trend as recruits join today’s All-Volunteer Force. According to CFPB, during last fiscal year, 70 percent of new recruits paid into the Department [...]

New York Times: Exploiting Veterans for Profit

Editorial Exploiting Veterans for Profit By The Editorial Board Nov. 24, 2017 Despite efforts by Congress, the Obama administration and state attorneys general to stop the predatory practices of for-profit colleges, veterans and service members [...]

Press Release: Veterans Education Success Releases New Report Showing 90/10 Loophole is Worse Than Previously Thought: Department of Education Data Shows Increased Targeting of Veterans and Servicemembers, Highlighting Urgency of Closing 90/10 Loophole

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: November 9, 2017 CONTACTS: Walter Ochinko, (202) 838-5050   Department of Education Data Shows Increased Targeting of Veterans and Servicemembers, Highlighting Urgency of Closing 90/10 Loophole   Today, Veterans Education Success is [...]