Not so good news!

I was hoping that the news from my FAFSA would be different. Turns out I don’t qualify for much.

Based on the information we have on record for you, your EFC is 8369. You
are not eligible for a Federal Pell Grant but you may be eligible for other
aid. Your school will use your EFC to determine your financial aid eligibility
for other federal grants, loans, and work study, and possible funding from your
state and school.

Based upon data provided by the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS) and
your reported grade level, we have determined that you may have received a
total amount of student loans that is close to or equal to the loan limits
established for the federal loan programs. Therefore, your eligibility for
additional student loans may be limited.

It’s not the best news, but I’m sure Syracuse University (yes that’s where I’m going) will be able to help me out with this. They wouldn’t be a good school if they didn’t.

However, SU is part of the Sallie Mae/Citibank student loan scandal.

There’s been a lot of talk about the corruption in the higher education business. Turns out Syracuse is part of this scandal. Sallie Mae has agreed to pay $2Million back. Unfortunately this doesn’t go to the students, but to education programs instead.

New York The nation’s largest student loan provider will stop offering perks to college employees as part of a settlement announced Wednesday in a widening probe of the student loan industry.

SLM Corp., commonly known as Sallie Mae, also agreed to pay $2 million into a fund to educate students and parents about the financial aid industry, and it will adopt a code of conduct created by New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo, who is heading the probe.

Cuomo said the expanding investigation of the $85 billion student loan industry has found numerous arrangements that benefited schools and lenders at the expense of students. Investigators say lenders have provided all-expense-paid trips to exotic locations for college financial aid officers who then directed students to the lenders.

“Our position is very simple,” Cuomo said. “Loan decisions should be made in the best interest of the students, and not the best interest of the school.”

Sallie Mae CEO Tim Fitzpatrick said in a statement Wednesday, “We are pleased that Attorney General Cuomo has recognized Sallie Mae’s leadership in the student loan industry and our ethical market practices with students and schools.”

The language closely resembled that of a statement from Citibank, which last week also agreed to a $2 million settlement with the attorney general’s office.

Investigators found that many colleges have established “preferred lender” lists and entered into revenue sharing and other financial arrangements with those lenders. Some colleges have “exclusive” preferred lender agreements with the companies.

“There is a spectrum of what we consider to be deceptive and illegal practices, from financial incentives that go back to the schools to financial incentives to financial aid officers, to perks to financial aid officers, to employees of lenders being stationed at schools,” Cuomo said at his Manhattan office.

The newly established code of conduct prohibits revenue sharing between lenders and schools, mandates disclosure of relationships between colleges and lenders, sets restrictions on how lenders are chosen for school “preferred lender” lists, and bans gifts or trips to university employees from lenders.

Reston, Va.-based Sallie Mae, which has relationships with more than 5,600 schools, agreed to stop running call centers or providing additional staff for college financial aid offices. It will also stop paying financial aid officers who serve on advisory boards and will no longer fund trips for school officials.

Six schools the University of Pennsylvania, New York University, Syracuse University, Fordham University, Long Island University and St. John’s University have agreed to reimburse students a total of $3.27 million for inflated loan prices caused by revenue sharing agreements, Cuomo said. Link to story.

It’s hard for me to believe that this has been going on for a long time. All this time, I have been paying a portion of this in my student loans! I hope that someday someone will initiate a class action lawsuit to make them pay us back! I have loans from Citibank and Sallie Mae. I mean, I am glad that there is a new Code of Conduct, as I think that reform is needed in a lot of areas. This was a good place to start.

Anyone else miffed about this?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: