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Student Sues University After Accruing $224K in Debt But Getting No Degree

Student Sues University After Accruing $224K in Debt But Getting No Degree

Something that can’t go on forever, won’t.

This woman was trying to get her doctorate in education. Six years later, she still doesn’t have a degree and is drowning in debt. How does this happen?

NBC News reports:

Student Sues Walden University: ‘I Wasted Six Years of My Life’

Jennifer Wright, an ex-Marine Corps officer who teaches grade schoolers in the California desert, had a dream. She wanted to get her doctorate in education while her two elderly parents were still alive — and while continuing to teach the low-income students she felt really needed her.

Six years after enrolling in a distance learning program with one of the nation’s best-known for-profit schools, however, Wright, 51, still doesn’t have her degree. She has exhausted the GI Bill benefits she earned from serving 16 years in the military and is $224,000 in debt.

“I feel like I’ve wasted six years of my life,” said Wright, “and I owe more than my house is worth.”

Wright is now suing Walden University, whose parent firm once had Bill Clinton on the payroll and was featured in an NBC News investigation earlier this year, for allegedly misleading students about the time and money to required to obtain advanced degrees online. She and four other plaintiffs allege in a class action suit that the distance learning company misrepresented how long it would take to complete a degree, and prolonged their enrollments for years with constant staff turnover and changing study requirements — until they were left hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt and still short of a degree.


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I have had numerous teachers tell classes to never ever go to college for any degree in education. Obviously a stupid move on her part.

    Another Ed in reply to Xenomethean. | December 4, 2016 at 7:18 pm

    My middle school aged son was bullied in school by a known bully who had assaulted other students. When placed in a headlock and attempted choke hold by the bully, my son broke the headlock, flipped the bully to the hallway floor and proceeded to pummel his face until a teacher intervened. My son was suspended a week for fighting. I met with the Principal and Assistant Principal the next day to get the suspension lifted. The female Principal had a Doctorate of Education degree. When I addressed her and used a polite “Ms.”, she corrected me and emphatically insisted that I refer to her as “Doctor”. I responded to her that I would gladly do so if she reciprocated and recognized my accredited university Master’s degree and called me “Master”. The Assistant Principal, recently retired military, almost bit his lip suppressing laughter.

    During the ensuing discussion, we concurred on the actions of all parties to the assault. I rejected her claim that my son was fighting, but instead was effectively counteracting a dangerous assault by the bully that could have resulted in great harm to my son, specifically damage to the neck area resulting in loss of consciousness, paralysis or death. I declared that if the suspension was not immediately revoked, I would return with an attorney and would be suing her personally and the school district for promoting an unsafe environment that did not protect but instead further victimized assault victims by punishing them for being assaulted and resisting the assault. I insisted that my son had the right to self defense, even within a school.

    The results? Suspension lifted for my son. My son was never bullied again by anyone. He had earned the respect of his peers. But, she never called me “Master”.

I am truly old because when I graduated with a BSEE in 1969, tuition was $20 per quarter. Full-load engineering/physics/chemistry/English/history books cost just a tad over $100 per quarter. What the hell happened?

    CloseTheFed in reply to snopercod. | December 4, 2016 at 7:39 am

    It’s quite obvious what happened. Some constituency was bought by some politician with student loans and grants, and excess cash flowed into higher ed, causing inflation.

    The more money that came in, the higher the tuition students could pay, so more loans and grants were provided by congressional action, buying more votes.

    And on and on, til we have this farcical situation. And the school administrators have LUVED it! And the kids went along, because, well, kids are young and stupid.

    gbear in reply to snopercod. | December 5, 2016 at 8:15 am

    Government subsidies and loan guarantees.

And they say grunts are dumb.

Since when are people allowed to sue others for their own stupidity?
Is there any question left as to why America is failing before our eyes. We simply can no longer accept responsibility for our won actions and must always blame others.
When I went to graduate school, only about a third of those entering grad school wanting to obtain a doctorate actually ever got one. The rest could not pass the classes, pass their qualifiers, successfully perform their research, tolerate the 5 to 10 years necessary to obtain the degree. or whatever.
To enter a graduate program and assume that you will certainly receive a doctorate in naive at best, but, then again, times have changed and an education doctorate today is likely far different that the chemistry doctorate I earned 30 years ago.

Apparently she’s a slow learner.

This story would have been funnier if she borrowed the money to buy Powerball tickets. But only slightly.

She claims in her suit that the university kept changing the requirements. Normally the requirements you graduate with are the ones that were in the catalogue your freshman year. A school simply cannot keep changing the goal posts.