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Settlement to provide student loan debt relief for more than 1,100 Oklahomans

More than 1,000 Oklahomans will see student loan debt relief as part of a national settlement, Attorney General Mike Hunter announced. [Metro Creative Connection image]
More than 1,000 Oklahomans will see student loan debt relief as part of a national settlement, Attorney General Mike Hunter announced. [Metro Creative Connection image]

Career Education Corporation will forgo collecting more than $2.2 million in student loan debt from 1,131 Oklahomans as part of a national settlement, Attorney General Mike Hunter announced Friday.

Nationally, the for-profit education company will be required to forgive more than $493.6 million in student loan debt owed by 179,529 students from 48 states and the District of Columbia, Hunter said.

The only two states not included in the settlement are California and New York.

The settlement concludes an investigation by attorneys general from seven states that was initiated in 2014 in response to complaints from students and a critical report on for-profit education by the U.S. Senate's Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee.

The attorneys general claimed Career Education Corporation employees were pressured to enroll students and encouraged to engage in unfair and deceptive practices.

The alleged wrongdoing included making misleading statements or failing to disclose information to prospective students on total costs, the ability to transfer course credits, program offerings and job placement rates.

In addition to providing debt relief to students, the company will be required to reform its recruiting and enrollment practices, Hunter said.

“The victims in this case were students who wanted to earn an education and better their lives,” Hunter said. “As a result of the high-pressure enrollment tactics used by employees at the company, some students never obtained the professional license they were seeking and incurred debts they could not repay.”

Students who either attended a Career Education Corporation institution that closed before Jan. 1, 2019, or whose final day of attendance at the American InterContinental University or Colorado Technical University occurred on or before Dec. 31, 2013, are eligible to have their debts forgiven under the agreement.

Former students with debt relief eligibility questions can contact the company by calling 844-783-8629 or 847-783-8629. They can also email questions to cecquestions@careered.com.

Randy Ellis

For the past 30 years, staff writer Randy Ellis has exposed public corruption and government mismanagement in news articles. Ellis has investigated problems in Oklahoma's higher education institutions and wrote stories that ultimately led to two... Read more ›

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