The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports that Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett has sent a letter to Everest College's parent company, Corinthian College Inc., requesting that it pay off the loans of its jobless Milwaukee graduates.
Corinthian, which is abandoning its Milwaukee operations after less than two years in operation, has already agreed to pay off the loans of those students who had dropped out, more than 50% of the students that it enrolled.
Barrett is right to insist that Corinthian also pay for those who graduated with Everest's worthless degrees and credits that do not transfer.
Corinthian spokepersons are disingenuous when they blame their pathetically low job placement rate, not quite 6%, on the poor economy. The Milwaukee Area Technical College has a job placement rate of 89% in the very same economy.
In addition to demanding that Corinthian pay off the jobless students' loans, the Mayor should help MATC secure favorable terms to occupy the former Everest Campus so that MATC can expand its services to students.
Dan Druml, the developer who the city assisted in developing the 6th and Mckinley site with $11
million in interest free bonds, recruited Everest to Milwaukee and defended the predatory diploma mill vigorously, calling them the right organization when he secured city approval for them to occupy his development. He needs to make amends for the problems he helped cause, including driving hundreds of very poor people even deeper into poverty, by recruiting Everest as his anchor tenant.
Mr. Druml can help rectify the damage he has inflicted on the city and its people by inviting MATC to occupy the former Everest campus. Corinthian has a nine year lease. MATC could move into the property, pay for utilities, maintenance and improvements and expand its services to students.
Druml does a lot of business in the city with the Department of City Development. He helped create the Everest problem. He should be part of the solution.