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Criticism of For Profit Higher Education

It’s been a rough few weeks for the for-profit sector of higher education. Critical articles have appeared everywhere from the Wall Street Journal to Good Housekeeping magazine. The U.S. Department of Education is trying to figure out how to craft regulations that will somehow tie the prospect of “gainful employment” to eligibility for federal student loans. One Wall Street trader compared the for-profit higher education sector to the subprime mortgage lenders and predicted that defaults on student loans could be the next “foreclosure” crisis.

There’s no question that aggressive recruiters and unscrupulous providers are out there making promises they cannot keep to “non-traditional” students who are vulnerable and hoping for a better life through a new career. But all the “bad apples” unfortunately tarnish many other for-profit schools that are, in fact, serving underserved populations and providing a quality education in the process.

So how can a potential student protect him or herself?

If the admissions person/recruiter  is pressing too hard, claiming that you MUST make the decision on the spot, making promises that sound too good to be true about high paying careers in just 6 or 9 months  – “buyer beware”! This is a case where you need to do your homework BEFORE you get to class. If you are hoping to enter a new career, do you know what the certification and/or licensure requirements are in order to work in that field?

Here’s where the confusing topic of accreditation comes in. For many professions, it is not enough that the school be accredited. The program itself, such as the diagnostic medical sonography (ultrasound) program or the surgical technology program, must also be accredited in order for you to be eligible upon graduation to sit for the certification exam. There may be “loopholes” to these requirements – alternate ways to be eligible for certification. But don’t rely solely on the word of that “salesman” who wants you to sign on the dotted line for your information.

Be informed, go in armed with the facts and you won’t end up being victimized.
Posted: 6/11/2010 2:56:12 PM by Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs | with 0 comments
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Commission on Accreditationof Allied Health Education Programs

CAAHEP is the largest programmatic accreditor in the health sciences field. In collaboration with its Committees on Accreditation, CAAHEP reviews and accredits over 2000 educational programs in twenty-six (26) health science occupations.