Kvaal in Ed Dive, ITT Tech closure should serve as a wakeup call to for-profit colleges

September 8, 2016

James Kvaal, a Towsley Foundation Policymaker in Residence at the Ford School, is cited in an Education Dive article, “ITT Tech’s closure leaves for-profit community ‘in despair.’”

The article focuses on the recent closure of ITT Tech, a for-profit college with thousands of employees and tens of thousands of students. ITT Tech had been under increasing federal scrutiny, and its closure has alarmed many for-profit educational institutions.

Kvaal, former deputy director of the White House Domestic Policy Council, says the closure shouldn’t have come as a surprise. “These problems are not new news, they have been issues that have been going on for years now,” Kvaal says.

Kvaal notes that some for-profit institutions have earned very large profit margins, while their graduates have continued to fare poorly in the job market. He suggests that the closure “should give new urgency to for-profit colleges’ efforts to focus on the value that they are providing students.”

“Congress made explicit the reason they made [for-profit] colleges eligible for student loans, and that was to get students jobs," says Kvaal. "That’s very easy to quantify.”