Even critics of government intervention can concede that the state may occasionally act as a useful information clearinghouse. With that said, the Department of Education has released its "College Scorecard
," with the aim of informing would-be students of the average debt levels, graduation rates and loan default numbers for thousands of campuses nationwide.
One non-surprising outcome is that arts-centric schools saddle students with the most post-graduation debt, reports
the Wall Street Journal
"Median debt loads at schools specializing in art, music and design average $21,576," the report states, "which works out to a loan payment of about $248 a month."
As for surprising
findings, see this: the highest average debt load went to an arts school in Nebraska, and not the trendy mecca of New York City where you'd expect it (though the #2 slot did in fact go to a Manhattan music college). Attendance at the Creative Center
in Omaha came with the hefty price tag of $52,035 for students earning a bachelor's in fine arts.
The American Interest
's Walter Russell Mead gives his take
on the importance of the College Scorecard:
For years, schools have been able to raise tuition while expecting students to take on more and more loans, and hard facts about the value of various degrees were difficult to come by. The Scorecard should help prospective students weigh the merits of various schools, and put more pressure on schools to compete on the price of their degrees.
Via the Wall Street Journal and the American Interest