Address the Cost of Higher Education

 

As the parent of a daughter who recently graduated from college, the quickly rising cost of college education hits particularly close to home. I have met far too many students who have deferred dreams, classes, and careers because of crippling student debt. In fact, student loan debt in the United States is larger than credit card debt and car debt combined. This is absolutely unacceptable. Higher education should be an achievable rung on the ladder of opportunity, the first step toward the American Dream - not the beginning of a nightmare.

One of the first steps we must take is to provide relief for graduates and current students struggling with debt. I support legislation that would allow student debt holders to refinance their loans. A next step would be to make student loan debt dischargeable in bankruptcy - why would consumer debt be forgivable, while student loans stay with struggling graduates forever?

We need to support local students and the local institutions that provide affordable, quality educations to members of the community. That’s why I’ve worked tirelessly to support the accreditation of SF City College, an important resource for thousands of local students. I have also worked to provide students at SF State, who tend to commute to classes, with subsidized access to public transportation options.

Finally, we have to stop institutions that take advantage of students and government programs. I have worked to prevent low performing, expensive for-profit colleges from preying on vulnerable students and veterans who qualify for subsidized federal loans or grants. These sham schools would not operate if it weren’t for access to this government support, and the only thing they provide their students is debt. It’s time to put a stop to these predatory practices.