Opinion: Treating Students as Customers

"Every decision I make as secretary of education is considered through a single, focused lens: How does this affect an individual student? When a program isn’t working in the best interest of students, I fight to change it," U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos wrote in an opinion article published Friday by The Wall Street Journal.

"To that end, today the U.S. Department of Education formally issued our expectations of the company that manages the nation’s $1.3-trillion-plus student-loan portfolio, known in Washington-speak as Amendment 9 of Phase II of the federal student loan servicing solicitation. This amendment maintains a focus on superior customer service and key borrower protections while ensuring the project stays on budget, saving taxpayers more than $130 million during the first five years alone.

The existing student-loan servicing requirements, put in place by the Obama administration, created a chaotic system that has resulted in numerous consumer complaints and multiple Government Accountability Office protests. It also imposed unsustainable requirements that could have put the entire student loan servicing system and all student protections at risk.

Simply put, the current systems used by Federal Student Aid are not designed to put customers—students and their parents—first. The process is complicated and rife with confusion. It does a disservice to students, who work to make their payments on time but face obstacles when they have questions about their loans. They are not treated like valued customers and are forced to spend far too much time navigating a cumbersome federal bureaucracy."

NASFAA's "Headlines" section highlights media coverage of financial aid to help members stay up to date with the latest news. Inclusion in Today's News does not imply endorsement of the material or guarantee the accuracy of information presented.


Publication Date: 5/22/2017

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