POTUS 2016: Higher Education And Student Debt

October 12, 2019 0 By Ronny Jaskolski


♪[THEME MUSIC]♪>>>WELCOME TO
POTUS, 2016, WHERE WE CALL THE
PRESIDENTIAL HORSE RACE AND POUR COLD
HARD FACTS ON THE OVERHEATED
CAMPAIGN RHETORIC. A PIVOTAL WEEK.
AFTER BIG VICTORIES IN THE NORTHEAST TUESDAY,
BOTH FRONT-RUNNERS HILLARY CLINTON
AND DONALD TRUMP ARE ACTING LIKE
THEY HAVE THE NOMINATION SEWN
UP. HILLRY IS ONLY ATTACKING REPUBLICANS RATHER
THAN A CERTAIN DEMOCRATIC SOCIALIST, AND TRUMP BEGAN A SERIES
OF PREPARED ALMOST PRESIDENTIAL-
SOUNDING SPEECHES WITH A FOREIGN POLICY
ADDRESS THAT EVEN OFFERED A TINY OLIVE BRANCH TO “OUR
FRIENDS IN THE MUSLIM WORLD.” ELECTION DETAILS
IN A MINUTE.>>>BUT A LESS-NOTICED
DEVELOPMENT THIS WEEK IS ALSO OF SIGNIFICANCE TO THE
NOVEMBER ELECTION. IT TOOK PLACE IN
THE SWING STATE OF NORTH CAROLINA
WHERE A FEDERAL JUDGE UPHELD THE
GOP-LED CRACKDOWN ON VOTING. THAT MEANS I.D.s WILL BE
REQUIRED, SAME-DAY REGISTRATION ABOLISHED AND
EARLY VOTING CURTAILED. THIS IS LIKELY TO
SUPPRESS VOTING AMONG DEMOCRATIC
LEANING MINORITIES AND STUDENTS. AN APPEAL IS BEING FILED. THE
SUPREME COURT MODERNIZED THE CIVIL RIGHTS ACT
THREE YEARS AGO MAKING THESE KINDS OF RESTRICTIONS MORE
LIKELY.>>>WHAT ELSE IS ON
TODAY’S PROGRAM? AFTER WE ANALYZE
THE PRIMARY RESULTS, WE’LL DO A REALITY CHECK
ON A HOT CAMPAIGN ISSUE THAT EVEN
CAME UP IN TRUMP’S Q&A AFTER HIS VICTORY
REMARKS TUESDAY.>>THAT IS THE SINGLE-BIGGEST
QUESTION I’M GETTING, STUDENT DEBT. WE’RE
GOING TO WORK ON THAT. WE’RE GOING
TO MAKE IT MUCH DIFFERENT.>>DIFFERENT HOW? THE CHANCELLOR
OF THE CITY UNIVERSITY OF NEW YORK WILL BE HERE
TO SHARE HIS THOUGHTS. ALSO A SCHOLAR
FROM THE UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN WITH A W-2 SOLUTION —
DEDUCT A PERCENTAGE OF TUITION FROM A STUDENT’S
FUTURE PAYCHECKS. FIRST, THOUGH, LET’S SEE
WHO’S CLOSE TO THE FINISH LINE AND WHO HAS COME UP LAME. YES, TIME FOR THE HORSE RACE.
IT’S HARD TO OVERESTIMATE HOW GOOD A NIGHT
DONALD TRUMP HAD ON TUESDAY. HE NOW STANDS JUST
283 DELEGATES AWAY FROM CAPTURING THE
NOMINATION OUTRIGHT. AFTER LAST NIGHT’S
SWEEPING VICTORIES IN FIVE EASTERN
STATES, HIS SLIMMEST MARGIN WAS A YAWNING 29% OVER
KASICH IN CONNECTICUT. TRUMP HAS GARNERED
9.9 MILLION VOTES, MORE THAN MITT ROMNEY’S TALLY
IN 2012 AND THE BILLIONAIRE IS ON THE PATH TO
GET MORE REPUBLICAN VOTES THAN ANY
REPUBLICAN CANDIDATE SINCE THE MODERN PRIMARY SYSTEM
WAS ESTABLISHED. IF THAT’S NOT ENOUGH TO CONVINCE
NEVER-TRUMP REPUBLICANS, HE SHOULD OR WILL BE THE
NOMINEE, HERE’S MORE EVIDENCE. TRUMP HAS BROKEN
THROUGH THE 50% BARRIER IN SIX CONSECUTIVE STATES. GETTING MORE THAN HALF THE
VOTES IS CRUCIAL TO TRUMP RUNNING THE TABLE
IN THE WINNER TAKE ALL OR WINNER TAKE MOST
STATES THAT REMAIN ON THE GOP SLATE. TED CRUZ
HAS BEEN MATHEMATICALLY SHUT OUT NOW FROM
CLINCHING THE NOMINATION AND IS HAVING AN INCREASINGLY
TOUGH TIME CONVINCING REPUBLICANS THAT
HIS DISCIPLINED DELEGATE HUNT STRATEGY WILL EVEN SEE THE LIGHT
OF DAY AT THE CONVENTION. MAYBE THAT’S WHY
HE NAMED A RUNNING MATE AS AN ACT OF
DESPERATION. SO TO WHOM ARE THE REMAINING
616 GOP DELEGATES LIKELY TO GO? WELL, TRUMP LEADS
BY DOUBLE DIGITS IN NEW JERSEY AND IS AHEAD IN WEST
VIRGINIA WITH CRUZ POLLING WELL IN THE
CONSERVATIVE STATES OF NEBRASKA, MONTANA,
AND SOUTH DAKOTA. THE RACE COMES DOWN TO THE
HIGH VALUE WINNER TAKE MOST STATES OF CALIFORNIA
AND INDIANAPOLIS WHICH TOGETHER HAVE
229 DELEGATES. CRUZ IS PRAYING FOR A REPEAT
OF WISCONSIN IN INDIANA NEXT TUESDAY BUT
RECENT POLLS SHOW TRUMP IN THE LEAD, ALL
HOPES OF WINNING INDIANA AND THE NOMINATION
ITSELF MAY REST OF THE FRAGILE COLLABORATION
WITH JOHN KASICH WHO HAS STOPPED
CAMPAIGNING THERE. BUT HOW MANY KASICH SUPPORTERS
WILL VOTE FOR CRUZ? AND KASICH ISN’T
EVEN EXPLICITLY ASKING THEM TO. FURTHER DISCOURAGING
CRUZ, TRUMP, THAT TOP BLUE LINE, HAS WIDENED HIS
LEAD IN CALIFORNIA WHERE POLLS NOW
SHOW HIM AHEAD BY ABOUT 20 PERCENTAGE POINTS.
CRUZ HAS LITTLE TIME TO LOSE. PRIMARY BALLOTS
WILL BE ARRIVING IN CALIFORNIA
MAILBOXES IN TWO WEEKS. MORE THAN HALF OF
CALIFORNIANS VOTE BY MAIL. ON THE DEMOCRATIC
SIDE, HILLARY CLINTON HAD A STELLAR NIGHT, LOSING
JUST ONE STATE, RHODE ISLAND, TO BERNIE SANDERS. HILLARY IS NOW JUST 232
DELEGATES SHY OF WINNING THAT NOMINATION,
WHILE BERNIE IS MORE THAN A THOUSAND DELEGATES
SHY. THIS LEAVES BERNIE
WITH A DIFFICULT CHOICE — FALL IN LINE TO REUNITE
THE PARTY OR CONTINUE TO LEAD A WELL-FUNDED
CAMPAIGN STOCKED WITH YOUTHFUL ENTHUSIASM
FOR IMPORTANT ISSUES LIKE CAMPAIGN FINANCE REFORM
AND FREE COLLEGE TUITION. AND LET’S GET
RIGHT TO THAT COLLEGE ISSUE, OUR FOCUS TODAY. THE DEMOCRATS
AND DONALD TRUMP SAY THE GOVERNMENT SHOULD
STOP PROFITING OFF STUDENT DEBT, SANDERS THINKS PUBLIC
UNIVERSITIES SHOULD BE FREE. CLINTON ADVOCATES LOWERING
TUITION THROUGH FEDERAL GRANTS TO STATES. KASICH SAYS
GRADUATES SHOULD PAY OFF LOANS THROUGH PUBLIC
SERVICE. CRUZ WANTS TO ABOLISH THE DEPARTMENT
OF EDUCATION. WE GOT TO WONDERING HOW
A PERSON WHO RUNS A UNIVERSITY HEARS THE
CAMPAIGN RHETORIC. JAMES B. MILLIKEN JOINS US,
HE’S THE CHANCELLOR OF THE CITY UNIVERSITY OF
NEW YORK WHICH SERVES ROUGHLY A HALF MILLION
STUDENTS ON 24 CAMPUSES. BEFORE COMING TO CUNY IN
2014, HE WAS PRESIDENT OF THE UNIVERSITY OF
NEBRASKA AND EARLIER VICE PRESIDENT OF THE
UNIVERSITY OF NORTH CAROLINA. WELCOME CHANCELLOR
MILLIKEN. >>THANK YOU,
GREAT TO BE WITH YOU.>>FULL DISCLOSURE, THIS
PROGRAM IS A PRODUCTION OF THE CITY UNIVERSITY OF NEW YORK.
CUNY HAS — I’M GOING TO GO THROUGH SOME OF THE HISTORY
WITH YOU. IT HAD FREE BUT MERIT-BASED TUITION UNTIL 1970,
MY PARENTS WENT FOR FREE. THOSE IN NIGHT SCHOOLS AND
GENERAL STUDIES HAVE PAID SINCE WAY BACK IN 1909 AND
WITHOUT ANY SCHOLARSHIPS. THEN IN THE JUSTICE CONSCIOUS
1970s CUNY LET EVERYONE IN FREE, OPEN ENROLLMENT
BUT WITH THE CITY’S FISCAL CRISIS IN ’76 TUITION
WAS INSTITUTED AND CLEARLY FROM THAT
BRIEF HISTORY, BOTH THE ECONOMY AND POLITICS
MATTER TO THE TUITION AND EQUALITY QUESTIONS,
SO WHERE ARE WE NOW IN THAT DUALITY TO USE NEW
YORK’S CUNY SYSTEM AS AN EXAMPLE?>>WELL, CUNY, AS YOU SAID,
YOUR PARENTS WENT FOR FREE AS DID JONAS SALK
AND COLIN POWELL AND ANDY GROVE, MANY PEOPLE HAVE BENEFITED
FROM CUNY’S PROMISE. CUNY HAS ONE OF THE LOWEST
LEVELS OF TUITION IN THE COUNTRY. 70% OF
OUR STUDENTS DO GO TUITION-FREE THROUGH PELL GRANTS
NATIONALLY AND THROUGH A VERY GENEROUS TUITION
ASSISTANCE PROGRAM THAT THE STATE OF
NEW YORK PROVIDES AND OTHER INSTITUTIONAL GRANTS. SO CUNY OFFERS THE
PROMISE OF ONE OF THE MOST AFFORDABLE INSTITUTIONS
IN HIGHER EDUCATION AND IT’S PROBABLY
WHY SO MANY STUDENTS WHO ARE LOW INCOME, SO MANY
NEW AMERICANS, 40% OF OUR UNDERGRADUATES,
WERE BORN IN OTHER COUNTRIES, 40%
COME FROM A HOUSEHOLD OF $20,000 OR LESS INCOME. SO
CUNY IS STILL THE PLACE, I THINK, THE PATHWAY TO THE
MIDDLE-CLASS THAT IT WAS IN 1909 AND IN 1970. IT’S JUST
DONE A LITTLE DIFFERENTLY. SUPPORTED DIFFERENTLY
WITH STATE AND FEDERAL AID TO OFFSET TUITION, WHICH
IS LOW GENERALLY. THEN ON THE DEBT
SIDE, WHICH I HEARD ONE OF THE CANDIDATES REFER TO
ON THE TAPE, BECAUSE OF THE LOW TUITION AND HIGH FINANCIAL
AID AT CUNY, 80% OF OUR GRADUATES LEAVE WITH
NO FEDERAL DEBT AND THOSE THAT DO HAVE DEBT LEVEL
ABOUT HALF THE NATIONAL AVERAGE FOR PUBLIC INSTITUTIONS
SO MAKING IT FREE FOR THE OTHER 30% MAY
NOT BE THE HIGHEST PRIORITY AT CUNY
AND WE CAN TALK A LITTLE BIT ABOUT
THAT. >>WELL, HOW MUCH DIVISION,
IF YOU CAN PUT A NUMBER ON IT, BECOMES A BARRIER
FOR THE POOREST STUDENTS TO ENTER? BERNIE
SANDERS IS RUNNING ON THE EXAMPLE OF GERMANY
WHICH HE SAYS CHARGES $1600 A YEAR TUITION NOW AND THEY’RE
GOING TO FREE BECAUSE THEY DECIDED IT
WAS TOO MUCH OF A BARRIER FOR TOO
MANY. >>RIGHT. IN THIS
COUNTRY WE’VE HAD A LOT OF RESEARCH DONE ON
THIS SUBJECT AND WE FOUND PEOPLE TEND TO
OVERESTIMATE THE COST OF HIGHER EDUCATION, ONE,
PARTICULARLY PUBLIC HIGHER EDUCATION AND THEY
UNDERESTIMATE THE AMOUNT OF AID AVAILABLE. SO AT THE
END OF THE DAY NOTHING IS FREE. SOMEBODY IS GOING TO PAY FOR
IT, THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT, THE STATE GOVERNMENT TUITION. SO IN THE CASE OF
CUNY, FOR INSTANCE, OR NEBRASKA OR NORTH CAROLINA, ONE OF OUR
JOBS IS TO MAKE SURE THAT PEOPLE UNDERSTAND
THAT COLLEGE IS AVAILABLE AND THERE IS ASSISTANCE FOR
THEM, PARTICULARLY THESE HAVE THE GREATEST NEED. THOSE ARE THE PEOPLE THAT
ARE HAVING THEIR NEED MET RIGHT NOW AT CUNY WITH PELL
GRANTS AND OTHER ASSISTANCE. SO IN PART IT IS AN EDUCATION
PROCESS, A COMMUNICATION PROCESS, AND I THINK AROUND
THE COUNTRY WE’VE BEEN DOING A BETTER JOB OF THIS
BUT THERE IS CERTAINLY MORE WE CAN DO TO MAKE
SURE PEOPLE HAVE THE — AN UNDERSTANDING OF HOW
IT WILL BE AFFORDABLE FOR THEM AND THEIR FAMILIES.>>AND I GUESS DIFFERENT
UNIVERSITIES CAN APPROACH IN THE DIFFERENT WAYS. YOU WERE TELLING
ME BEFORE WE WENT ON THE AIR ABOUT THE CAROLINA
COVENANT WHEN YOU WERE AT THE UNIVERSITY
OF NORTH CAROLINA AND YOU DID IT DIFFERENTLY YET IN
NEBRASKA. SO YOU’VE GOT
EXPERIENCE FROM THREE DIFFERENT
AREAS OF THE COUNTRY. HOW DO THEY
COMPARE?>>SO IN EACH OF THESE THREE
CASES, NEW YORK AND NEBRASKA AND NORTH CAROLINA,
IN PART THE GOAL WAS TO MAKE SURE THAT PEOPLE COULD
AFFORD COLLEGE BUT ALSO THE GOAL WAS TO HAVE
A PROGRAM THAT COULD BE WIDELY KNOWN AND
PEOPLE COULD BECOME FAMILIAR WITH IT EARLY ON.
SO CATCHY PHRASE, A CAROLINA COVENANT,
WHICH PROMISED THAT THOSE STUDENTS —
LOW-INCOME STUDENTS WHO NEEDED FINANCIAL
AID WOULD GRADUATE WITH ZERO DEBT AND THAT WAS WIDELY
PROMOTED AND WE FIND, NOT SURPRISINGLY,
THAT PEOPLE WITH THE GREATEST FINANCIAL NEED ARE
ALSO THE MOST AVERSE TO TAKING ON SIGNIFICANT DEBT.
THAT HAS BEEN A VERY SUCCESSFUL PROGRAM
IN NORTH CAROLINA. IN NEBRASKA WE HAD A PROGRAM
CALLED COLLEGE-BOUND NEBRASKA WHERE WE
TOOK EVERY STUDENT WHO HAD ANY NEED-BASED AID AND
ADDED ADDITIONAL AID SO THAT THEY WERE — ATTENDED
TUITION FREE. AND, AGAIN, WITH THE GOVERNOR AND OTHERS
PROMOTED IT AROUND THE STATE SO IT WOULD
BECOME WELL KNOWN TO HIGH SCHOOL AND MIDDLE
SCHOOL STUDENTS SO PEOPLE KNOW THEY
CAN AFFORD COLLEGE. THE SAME THING I THINK IS
IMPORTANT AT CUNY, AND WE ADVERTISE IN THE
SUBWAYS AND IN THE PAPERS AND ON THE RADIO AND
EVERYWHERE ELSE TO MAKE SURE THAT
PEOPLE KNOW WHAT A TERRIFIC VALUE
PROPOSITION CUNY IS. IT’S HIGH QUALITY, LOW TUITION,
AND THE SIGNIFICANT FINANCIAL AID OPPORTUNITY.>>AND COMMUNITY
COLLEGE STUDENTS HAVE A HIGH DROPOUT RATE AND
CAN TAKE YEARS TO FINISH. LACK OF MONEY,
FAMILY RESPONSIBILITIES, ETC., AND THERE’S A MODEL
AT CUNY THAT IS GETTING A LOT OF NATIONAL
ATTENTION IN THIS REGARD CALLED THE
ASAP PROGRAM, ACCELERATE, STUDY, AND ASSOCIATE
PROGRAM, THE ASSOCIATE DEGREE BEING WHAT YOU GET
AT COMMUNITY COLLEGE.>>RIGHT. RIGHT. SO THE GOAL
THAT I THINK ALL OF US SHARE IS TO HAVE A
HIGHER LEVEL OF EDUCATIONAL
ATTAINMENT IN THIS COUNTRY. BY FAR THE
MAJORITY OF ALL NEW JOBS REQUIRE
EDUCATION BEYOND HIGH SCHOOL AND WE
FIND THAT WHILE WE WERE FIRST IN THE WORLD IN
EDUCATIONAL ATTAINMENT A DECADE OR SO AGO,
NOW WE’RE 14, 15, SOMETHING LIKE
THAT. SO THE PRESIDENT
SET THE GOAL BEING FIRST IN THE WORLD
AND I THINK FROM A COMPETITIVE SENSE, FOR A
COUNTRY WE RECOGNIZE THAT’S IMPORTANT BUT ALSO FOR
INDIVIDUAL OPPORTUNITY, WE KNOW THE DIFFERENCE
IT MAKES FOR INCOME AND ALL KIND OF OTHER
IMPORTANT FACTORS. SO THE GOAL IS NOT
TO HAVE THE HIGHEST ENROLLMENT. ACCESS AND
AFFORDABILITY IS A SIGNIFICANT PART
OF THE EQUATION, BUT ALSO SUCCESS, RETENTION,
PROGRESS TOWARDS DEGREE AND ULTIMATELY GRADUATION. WE WANT EVERY
STUDENT WHO COMES INTO CUNY TO LEAVE
WITH A DEGREE THAT WILL HELP THEM
MOVE INTO THE MIDDLE-CLASS, HAVE
A BETTER QUALITY OF LIFE AND
SUPPORT THEIR FAMILIES.>>I SEE 17% OF ALL CUNY
COMMUNITY COLLEGE STUDENTS GET THE TWO YEAR
DEGREE IN THREE YEARS. THAT’S LOW, 17%, BUT THOSE
IN THE ASAP PROGRAM, 57%.>>RIGHT. SO NATIONALLY
URBAN COMMUNITY COLLEGE GRADUATION
RATE OVER THREE YEARS IS ABOUT 16%, 17%. SO IT’S
A SIGNIFICANT PROBLEM NATIONWIDE. SO WHAT CUNY HAS DONE OVER
ALMOST THE LAST TEN YEARS IT STARTED BUT ONLY
IN THE LAST COUPLE OF YEARS STARTED TO GROW TO
SCALE IS TO INSTITUTE A PROGRAM WITH A NUMBER
OF INTERVENTIONS THAT WE KNOW WORK, FULL
FINANCIAL AID, FULL TIME ATTENDANCE, INTRUSIVE ADVISING AND IN
NEW YORK A FREE METRO CARD BECAUSE WE FOUND
THAT’S WHY STUDENTS WERE SKIPPING CLASSES,
MAKING CHOICES ABOUT PAYING THEIR
TRANSPORTATION COSTS.>>BUS AND SUBWAY
FAIR. >>SO A BUNDLE OF THESE
INTERVENTIONS TOGETHER IS WHAT ASAP IS AND THE DIFFERENCE,
NOT JUST ON CUNY’S ESTIMATE BUT NATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS
THAT HAVE DONE INDEPENDENT TESTING HAVE FOUND
TO BE THE MOST EFFECTIVE MEANS TO INCREASE GRADUATION
RATES AT COMMUNITY COLLEGINGS AND AS
YOU SAID IT’S DOUBLE IN SOME CASES TRIPLE WHAT THE
GRADUATION RATES ARE FOR COMMUNITY COLLEGES. >>BUT YOU SAID THE GOAL IS
NOT TO MAXIMIZE ENROLLMENT AND I UNDERSTAND
WHY A GOAL WOULD BE TO MAXIMIZE THE SUCCESS OF
THOSE WHO ARE ENROLLED BUT ISN’T A NATIONAL GOAL TO
MAXIMIZE ENROLLMENT. IF WE’RE FAST MANUFACTURING
ECONOMY FOR WHICH YOU DON’T NEED A COLLEGE
DEGREE AND IN THIS GLOBAL ECONOMY NOW WHERE
ALMOST EVERYBODY OR LOTS MORE
PEOPLE THAN IN THE PAST NEED COLLEGE
DEGREES ONE OF THE GOALS IS TO MAXIMIZE ENROLLMENT
NATIONALLY.>>THAT’S PART OF
IT. THOSE JOBS ARE NOT AVAILABLE FOR PEOPLE
WHO HAVE 12 OR 30 CREDITS, THEY’RE AVAILABLE
FOR PEOPLE WHO HAVE DEGREES SO
ENROLLMENT GETS YOU IN THE DOOR AND ACCESS
GETS YOU IN THE DOOR AND AFFORDABILITY CAN KEEP YOU THERE
BUT WHAT WE NEED TO DO ACROSS THE
COUNTRY, PARTICULARLY AT
OUR URBAN COMMUNITY COLLEGES BUT I THINK AT MOST OF OUR
PUBLIC INSTITUTIONS IS TO INCREASE THE GRADUATION
RATES AND SO WE NEED TO PROVIDE BROAD AFFORDABLE
ACCESS BUT THEN WE NEED THOSE SUPPORTS THAT STUDENTS
WHO COME IN WITH THE LEAST PREPARATION
NEED MORE THEIR THAN COUNTERPARTS AT IVY
LEAGUE INSTITUTIONS AND THAT’S OFTEN WHAT’S LACKING AND
THAT’S INSTITUTIONAL SUPPORT.>>YOU’VE DESCRIBED
THREE GOOD-SOUNDING PROGRAMS TO GET
STUDENTS THROUGH WITH MINIMUM DEBT
IN NEW YORK, NEBRASKA, AND NORTH CAROLINA,
THREE VERY DIFFERENT STATES IN THREE PARTS OF
THE COUNTRY. I IMAGINE ALL STATE UNIVERSITY
AND URBAN UNIVERSITY THAT ARE PUBLIC
COLLEGE PRESIDENTS WOULD TELL ME SIMILAR STORIES AT
THEIR INSTITUTIONS YET WE SEEM TO HAVE THAT
MASSIVE STUDENT DEBT CRISIS THAT’S
BECOME A PROBLEM.>>MOST EDUCATION IS DONE
AT THE STATE LEVEL SO THAT’S AN INTERESTING DIMENSION OF
THE PRESIDENTIAL DEBATE ON COLLEGE COSTS AND ON DEBT. IN SOME STATES THERE’S BEEN
A DISINVESTMENT IN HIGHER EDUCATION. THE HIGH
WATERMARK IS A PROPORTION OF TOTAL COST PROBABLY IN THE
MID-80s SO AS A PERCENTAGE OF THE TOTAL COST OF
HIGHER EDUCATION IT’S GENERALLY GONE DOWN AROUND
THE COUNTRY. IN SOME CASES DOWN
SIGNIFICANTLY. NEW YORK HAS ONE OF THE BETTER
RECORDS WITH TUITION ASSISTANCE PROGRAM
AND STUDENT AID SO IN MANY PLACES THERE
IS A VERY SIGNIFICANT PROBLEM RIGHT NOW
WHERE STATES HAVE DISINVESTED, WHERE THEY HAVE
RAISED TUITION TO MAKE UP FOR THAT DISINVESTMENT
AND THAT HAS LED TO WHAT’S REFERRED TO AS
SKYROCKETING TUITION RATES AND CRIPPLING DEBT.>>LET ME TRY ONE PARTIAL
SOLUTION TO THIS ON YOU FROM ONE OF THE
CANDIDATES NOT IN THE RACE ANYMORE. MARCO RUBIO
TALKED ABOUT ALTERNATIVE ACCREDITATION, THAT IS
GETTING ACCREDITATION FOR COURSES YOU TAKE
IN STUDY AT HOME PROGRAMS LIKE COURSERA SO THE STUDENT
DOESN’T HAVE TO PAY FOR THE BRICK AND MORTAR UNIVERSITY
INFRASTRUCTURE. DO YOU LIKE THAT
IDEA?>>WELL, REPRESENTING AN
INSTITUTION THAT PROBABLY HAS THE LEAST BRICK AND
MORTAR PER STUDENT IN THE COUNTRY I
DO LIKE THE IDEA. RIGHT NOW CUNY HAS
3,000 STUDENTS IN HIGH SCHOOL TAKING COLLEGE COURSES.
THIS IS ONE WAY THEY GET COLLEGE CREDIT
BEFORE THEY COME TO THE UNIVERSITY AND
IT’S FREE. I ATTENDED MY FIRST
GRADUATION TWO YEARS AGO AT A COMMUNITY COLLEGE WHERE 40
YOUNG PEOPLE STOOD UP AT THE GRADUATION
CEREMONY GETTING THEIR ASSOCIATES
DEGREE. NEXT WEEK, THE WEEK AFTER THEY
WERE GOING TO GET THEIR HIGH SCHOOL DIPLOMA. SO THEY HAD MANAGED TO DO
THAT AT THE SAME TIME. THAT’S A TERRIFIC
MODEL. I THINK MORE ONLINE
EDUCATION WHICH WE’RE DOING CONSIDERABLY MORE OF AT CUNY
AND YOU SEE AROUND THE COUNTRY IS IMPORTANT AND
OFFERS MORE OPPORTUNITY EVEN WITH 24 CAMPUSES
WE CAN’T SERVE EVERYONE WHO WE WOULD LIKE TO WHO
MAYBE HAVE RESTRAINTS BECAUSE OF THEIR WORK
OR THEIR FAMILY OR THEIR LOCATION SO
BEING ABLE TO SUPPLEMENT THAT
WITH HIGH-QUALITY ONLINE EDUCATION
PROVIDED BY BY OUR FACULTY I THINK IS
A REALLY IMPORTANT DIMENSION OF THE
ACCESS QUESTION. >>ALL RIGHT, STAY HERE.
WE’RE GOING TO BRING ON SOME ADDITIONAL EVIDENCE.>>>TIME FOR EVIDENCE-BASED
POLITICS WHERE WE POUR COLD HARD FACTS ON THE
OVERHEATED CAMPAIGN RHETORIC. LET’S CONTINUE TO THINK
ABOUT THE CAMPAIGN ISSUE OF HIGHER EDUCATION. COLLEGE LOAN
DEBT HAS BEEN ON A STEEP INCLINE FOR
MORE THAN A DECADE, PASSING A TRILLION DOLLARS FOUR
YEARS AGO. SOME FIXES HAVE BEEN PROPOSED
IN THE PRESIDENTIAL RACE. HILLARY CLINTON WOULD GIVE
FEDERAL GRANTS TO STATES TO SUPPORT PUBLIC
COLLEGES AND BRING TUITION WAY DOWN.>>MY PLAN FOR DEBT-FREE
TUITION AT PUBLIC COLLEGES AND UNIVERSITIES WILL EVENTUALLY
ELIMINATE ANY STUDENT DEBT.>>SO SHE HOPES. BERNIE
SANDERS BELIEVES THAT IN THE MODERN HIGH-TECH
ECONOMY PUBLIC COLLEGES SHOULD BE FREE LIKE PUBLIC
HIGH SCHOOLS ARE CURRENTLY AND CURRENT STUDENT DEBT NEEDS
RADICAL RESTRUCTURING.>>MY PROGRAM, MAKING PUBLIC
COLLEGES AND UNIVERSITIES TUITION FREE, ALLOWING PEOPLE
WITH DEBT TO REFINANCE AT THE LOWEST POSSIBLE INTEREST
RATES IS A FAIRLY EXPENSIVE PROPOSAL. IT’S ABOUT $70 BILLION
A YEAR.>>MORE PUBLIC SPENDING.
THESE CHANGES WOULD BE MAJOR AND TREAT ALL STUDENTS THE SAME.
AT FIRST GLANCE THAT WOULD SEEM FAIR BUT A RECENT STUDY
SUGGESTS THAT IT MIGHT NOT BE. IT’S MORE OFTEN THE STUDENTS
WITH SMALL LOANS AND OFTEN NO DEGREE WHO ARE
DROWNING IN DEBT. HERE TO EXPLAIN
THAT AND TO SUGGEST ONE POLICY FIX IS SUSAN DYNARSKI,
PROFESSOR OF EDUCATION, PUBLIC POLICY AND ECONOMICS AT
THE UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN. HER PAPER “LOANS
FOR EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITY, MAKING BORROWING
WORK FOR TODAY’S STUDENTS” WAS PUBLISHED BY THE
BROOKINGS INSTITUTION’S HAMILTON PROJECT. SHE JOINS
US VIA SKYPE FROM ANN ARBOR. HELLO, WELCOME TO
THE PROGRAM. THANK YOU FOR
DOING THIS. >>THANKS FOR
HAVING ME. >>WHO DO THE DATA SHOW ARE
THE MOST LIKELY TO DEFAULT ON STUDENT LOANS?>>THE LOANS MOST LIKELY TO
BE IN DEFAULT ARE IN THE RANGE OF $5,000 TO $7,000.
SO THE LOANS IN DEFAULT ARE TYPICALLY SMALLER
THAN THE LOANS THAT ARE IN GOOD
STANDING.>>AND WE’RE GOING
TO BRING UP A GRAPHIC HERE THAT SHOWS SOME OF THIS.>>SO IF WE LOOK AT
UNDERGRADUATES IN THE U.S. ALMOST HALF OF THEM DON’T
BORROW ANYTHING, ABOUT 44%. THAT’S A GOOD
STATISTIC TO START WITH. ANOTHER QUARTER
BORROW LESS THAN $10,000. SO WE HAVE 65% OF STUDENTS
WHO BORROW NOTHING OR LESS THAN $10,000 AND 1%, 2% MIGHT BE
BORROWING MORE THAN $75,000. THE BIG NUMBERS THAT YOU
HEAR, THE HUNDRED THOUSAND DOLLARS, THE $75,000
IN DEBT THOSE ARE PEOPLE WHO TEND TO BE TAKING ON
GRADUATE DEBT SO THEY’RE NOT PEOPLE WHO WOULD
BE AFFECTED BY SAY THE FREE PUBLIC COLLEGE OR FREE
COMMUNITY COLLEGE INITIATIVES. THEY’RE PEOPLE GETTING MBAs,
M.D.s, LAW DEGREES AND TYPICALLY THEY’RE
PEOPLE WHO ARE MAKING GOOD MONEY AND THEY
DON’T STRUGGLE WITH THE DEBT. THE DEFAULT RATE
AMONG PEOPLE GETTING GRADUATE
DEGREES IS QUITE LOW.>>INTERESTING. YOU MAKE A
DISTINCTION BETWEEN A COLLEGE LOAN PROBLEM, WHICH
YOU SAY WE DON’T HAVE, AND A LOAN REPAYMENT
PROBLEM WHICH YOU SAY WE DO HAVE. WHAT’S
THE DISTINCTION?>>THE DISTINCTION IS IF WE
LOOK AT DEBT OF $5,000 WHICH IS WHERE THE DEFAULTS ARE
HAPPENING, WHERE THE DISTRESS IS HAPPENING, THAT’S
ABOUT $100 A MONTH. SO FOR PEOPLE WHO
ARE MAKING A REASONABLE WAGE THAT’S MANAGEABLE AND THE
WAY WE CAN MAKE SURE IT’S MANAGEABLE IS TO
HAVE THEIR PAYMENTS FLEX UP AND DOWN WITH
THEIR EARNINGS. SO IF YOU HAVE A BAD YEAR OR
BAD MONTH THEN YOUR PAYMENTS SHOULD GO DOWN. IF
YOU HAVE A GOOD YEAR, GOOD MONTH, YOUR
PAYMENT SHOULD GO UP. THINK ABOUT HOW WE
PAY FOR OUR SOCIAL SECURITY CONTRIBUTIONS.
THAT I GO UP AUTOMATICALLY AND GO DOWN AUTOMATICALLY
WHEN OUR EARNINGS RISE AND FALL. AND SIMILARLY
IN MANY COUNTRIES THAT’S HOW STUDENT
LOAN PAYMENTS ARE SET UP. THEY RISE AND THEY
FALL AUTOMATICALLY AS A PERCENTAGE OF
A PERSON’S EARNINGS.>>ARE WE DOING THAT AT ALL
IN THE UNITED STATES TODAY? IF NOT, BECAUSE IT SOUNDS
AT FIRST BLUSH LIKE COMMON SENSE WHY AREN’T THE
POLITICIANS TALKING ABOUT THAT AS A POSSIBLE
SOLUTION. >>SO WE ARE DOING
A FORM OF IT. SO IF YOU THINK OF THE
PRESIDENT’S INITIATIVE SUCH AS PAY AS YOU EARN AND
NOW THIS REPAY AS YOU EARN, THESE ARE PROGRAMS
THAT ARE INTENDED TO LINK A PERSON’S
PAYMENTS TO THEIR INCOME THAT THEY
DON’T ADJUST IN THE WAY AUTOMATICALLY THAT I
DESCRIBED. YOU APPLY FOR THESE PROGRAMS
AND BASED ON THE PREVIOUS YEAR’S INCOME A PAYMENT
IS CALCULATED. SO IF IN THE MIDDLE OF THE
YEAR THERE’S A BIG SHIFT IN YOUR INCOME, THAT’S NOT
ACCOUNTED FOR. SO, NO, WE’RE NOT DOING SOMETHING THAT’S
AS AUTOMATIC AS THIS IS.>>CHANCELLOR, YOU
WANT TO REACT TO THIS OR DO YOU HAVE A QUESTION
FOR SCHOLAR GUEST?>>WELL MAYBE I’D COME BACK
TO THE BROADER QUESTION OF HOW WE FINANCE HIGHER
EDUCATION AND WHETHER THE INVESTMENT IN “FREE” TUITION IS
WORTH MAKING. AT CUNY IT’S ABOUT —
CALCULATED ABOUT $150 MILLION TO TAKE OUT THE REST OF
TUITION IN COMMUNITY COLLEGES AND ABOUT $55
MILLION OVER ALL OF OUR UNDERGRADUATE
POPULATION, I’M INTERESTED FROM
SUSAN WHETHER SHE THINKS THAT’S THE
BEST INVESTMENT THAT CAN BE MADE
WITH NEW DOLLARS. >>JUST TO GIVE HISTORICAL
PERSPECTIVE, COMMUNITY COLLEGE WAS EITHER
FREE OR PRACTICALLY FREE. SO FREE COMMUNITY
COLLEGE WOULD GET US BACK TO WHERE
WE ONCE WERE BEFORE THE STATES
DISINVESTED. I WOULD SEPARATE IN MY MIND
THE QUESTIONS OF WHETHER COMMUNITY COLLEGE
COULD BE FREE AND OUR PROBLEMS WITH
STUDENT DEBT. THE BIG RAMPUP IN
STUDENT DEBT IS NOT AMONG PEOPLE GOING TO
COMMUNITY COLLEGES, IT’S AMONG PEOPLE GETTING
GRADUATES DEGREES AND IT’S AMONG PEOPLE GOING
TO FOR-PROFIT COLLEGES. SO THE SOUNDBITE
THAT YOU HAD THERE FROM CANDIDATE CLINTON SAID
HER PLAN TO MAKE COLLEGE FREE WOULD ELIMINATE
STUDENT DEBT. AND THAT’S NOT TRUE IF IT’S
LIMITED TO PUBLIC COLLEGES. 20% OF STUDENTS GO
TO PRIVATE INSTITUTIONS. AND THEN, OF COURSE, THERE’S
THE GRADUATE STUDENTS WHO ACCOUNT FOR MOST
OF THE DEBT SO STUDENT DEBT WILL
ALWAYS BE WITH US WHICH IS WHY WE
NEED REPAYMENT TO WORK.>>VERY BRIEFLY, BECAUSE
WE’RE GOING TO RUN OUT OF TIME SOON, WHY WOULD IT
BE THE GOVERNMENT’S RESPONSIBILITY TO
FUND DEBT REDUCTION AT PRIVATE COLLEGES?>>IT’S NOT CLEAR TO ME THAT
IT IS THE BEST USE OF THE MONEY. STUDENT LOAN REFINANCING IS
ABOUT REDUCING INTEREST RATE AND REDUCING
INTEREST RATE DOESN’T DO MUCH FOR STRUGGLING
BORROWERS, IT CHANGES THE PAYMENT BY $20, $30, $40 A
MONTH. SO IF WE WANT TO HELP STRUGGLING
BORROWERS, REFINANCING IS NOT THE WAY TO DO IT.>>LET ME TRY IN OUR
REMAINING MINUTE AND A HALF OR SO ANOTHER PROPOSAL THAT’S
COME FROM THE REPUBLICAN SIDE ON THE CAMPAIGN
TRAIL AND THAT IS REPORT CARDS FOR COLLEGES
SHOWING THE EARNINGS A FEW YEARS AFTER GRADUATION
OF STUDENTS WITH VARIOUS MAJORS. THEN
THEY’D KNOW WHAT KIND OF VALUE THEY’RE LIKELY TO
GET FOR THEIR STUDENT LOAN DEBT IF THEY’RE
GOING TO GET INTO DEBT. CHANCELLOR, DO YOU
THINK THAT KIND OF TRANSPARENCY IS A
GOOD IDEA?>>THERE’S SOME OF THAT THAT
EXISTS NOW THAT’S AVAILABLE. I THINK MORE OF
THAT IS — WOULD BE ADVANTAGEOUS TO
CONSUMERS TO STUDENTS AND PHAM
THESE ARE THINKING ABOUT COLLEGES AND
MAKING A CHOICE. >>AND PROFESSOR?>>AGREED THAT MORE
INFORMATION CERTAINLY HELPS. STUDENTS NEED TO
BE WALKING INTO COLLEGE WITH THEIR
EYES OPEN ABOUT WHAT THE COST AND
THE BENEFITS ARE AND TO MAKE SMART CHOICES THEY
NEED INFORMATION. I THINK THE SCORE CARD IS A
GOOD MOVE IN THAT DIRECTION.>>SOMETIMES IT’S
MISLEADING BECAUSE PHILOSOPHY MAJORS
I’VE READ WHO YOU THINK WELL, WHAT
KIND OF PHILOSOPHY COMPANY ARE YOU
GOING TO GO TO WORK FOR AFTER
GRADUATION, APPARENTLY THEY DO FAIRLY
WELL BECAUSE THEY TEND TO GO INTO PROFESSIONAL
TRACK CAREERS SO WHO KNOWS. WHAT ARE YOU GOING
TO LOOK FOR CHANCELLOR ON THE CAMPAIGN TRAIL AS WE GET
TOWARD THE GENERAL ELECTION?>>I THINK SORT OF
BEING HONEST AND AND WHAT THE
FEDERAL GOVERNMENT CAN AND SHOULD DO
IS IMPORTANT. AS I MENTIONED BEFORE, MOST
OF PUBLIC HIGHER EDUCATION IS FUNDED BY STATES. I THINK THERE ARE
SOME THINGS THAT THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT
CAN DO, SIMPIFYING FAFSA IS ONE IDEA THAT’S
BEEN AROUND FOR A WHILE. TAKING THE MYSTERY
OUT OF THAT FOR PARTICULARLY LOW INCOME FIRST
GENERATION COLLEGE STUDENTS IS A GREAT IDEA. THAT’S
ONE SIMPLE THING I THINK COULD BE DONE.>>CHANCELLOR, PROFESSOR,
THANK YOU BOTH VERY MUCH FOR JOINING US,
COMPLEX ISSUE, WE’VE TACKLED SOME
PIECES OF IT. >>THANK YOU.>>THAT’S POTUS 2016 FOR TODAY.
WE’RE HERE EACH OTHER POURING COLD HARD FACTS ON THE
OVERHEATED CAMPAIGN RHETORIC. NEXT TIME THE INDIANA PRIMARY
AND EXIT STRATEGIES, HOW DO CAMPAIGNS END?
I’M BRIAN LEHRER, THANKS FOR WATCHING. ♪[THEME MUSIC[♪