Bernie Sanders’ wife led Burlington College for seven years and according to this report from Politico, she didn’t do a very good job.

What happened at Sanders U.

When Jane Sanders was in charge of a small private college in Vermont for seven years, it sank deep into debt while trying to expand its campus. Many students took out tens of thousands of dollars in loans to attend, but their investment was questionable: Only a third of former Burlington College students earn more than the average person with a high school diploma.

Jane Sanders’ husband, presidential candidate Bernie Sanders, has offered a higher-education plan that would make tuition at public colleges free. But it would do little to prod colleges, public or private, to keep costs down or ensure that a college degree is worthwhile for graduates.

Jane Sanders, who led Burlington College from 2004 to 2011, spent millions on a new campus — 33 acres along the bank of Lake Champlain — to attract more students and donations from alumni. It didn’t work: The college failed to recruit enough students or donations to repay its debts and even came close to losing its accreditation.

It’s a formula that has failed colleges and universities across the country.

“The idea is very common: We’re going to create a new campus, that’s going to drive interest and alumni giving will go up,” said Alexander Holt, policy analyst at New America. The problem is that, as small, private colleges compete for prestige and students, they may take on too much debt and wind up worse off, Holt said.

Bernie Sanders’ higher-education plan focuses on an issue that’s most palpable for college graduates and dropouts: their debt, which has ballooned in recent years to $1.2 trillion. In addition to making tuition at public colleges and universities free, he would lower rates on student loans for both new borrowers and graduates with student debt.

Read the original article:
What happened at Sanders U. (Politico)