The issue of students and student loan debt will probably be perennial: education costs are increasing; student loans and private loans are almost the norm.
That is, except for The College of the Ozarks in Arkansas.
Back in the 1990s, The College of the Ozarks, an evangelical Christian college, forbid its students from accepting/using federal loans to pay for tuition. In 2013, the college is refusing private student loans as well. Instead, to pay for an education at The College of the Ozarks, students are required “to work, earn scholarships and minimize spending instead.”
The college itself is a model to the students. It does not carry any institutional debt; it waits to build new facilities until enough money has been raised/saved.
This is unlikely to be a model entertained by other colleges; it’s impractical and, in some sense, unreasonable. And yet there’s something to this idea that gets to the heart of the student loan debt issue: credit isn’t always the answer. Earned money, though, is. And it’s this focus on financial accountability and patience/perseverance, rather than the immediate gratification (followed by a difficult reckoning) process that so many students seem to find themselves in.
Of course, for student loan collectors, a proposal like this is akin to Jonathan Swift’s “Modest Proposal.” But we thought it was an interesting piece and food for thought.
About Rob Norwood
Rob Norwood has over 18 years of experience managing client relationships and contracts, including eight years in the college and university market. He is certified as an ACA Collection Specialist and Higher Education Collection Specialist.
Array Services Group and its three innovative business units – CareCall, ProSource and J.C. Christensen & Associates – offer professional services in call management disciplines, accounts receivable and revenue cycle management, empowering clients for immediate and future success.