This Radical Student Debt Strike Tugs at Your Heart—But It's Not the Answer

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Media Outlet: Talking Points Memo

Monica Potts wrote for Talking Points Memo on the student debt crisis at for-profit colleges:

In 2013, Latonya Suggs came upon a commercial for Everest College on TV. The single mother from Cincinnati contacted the school, and then, she says, the recruiters harassed her until she enrolled. At first, the online school seemed flexible, but it began to feel isolating. She rarely spoke with a real person. She finished her associate's degree in criminal justice in October, and wants to be a probation officer, but can't find a job, and she says the school hasn't been much help. Suggs, who is now 28, has taken out more than $52,000 in loans for Everest, in top of $20,000 or so she'd already borrowed for a previous school.

"I'm the first person in my family to graduate from college, so I didn't know," she says. "My degree is useless."


Monica Potts was a Class of 2016 & 2017 New America Fellow, writing a book about the dilemmas facing poor women and explore the idea of a second-chance society. Previously, Potts spent four years at the American Prospect magazine.