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Support financial aid reform

Letter to the Editor | Sunday, September 20, 2009

To Whom It May Concern:

I discovered with great disappointment that my alma mater is, according to C-Span, “leading” the opposition in the Student Aid and Fiscal Responsibility Act (HR 3221) currently being debated in Congress. The legislation simplifies the federally guaranteed loan system which would help save the federal government an estimated $87 billion over 10 years. The $87 billion saved would then be used to increase aid to low-income students, improve community colleges and raise standards for early childhood education. Not surprisingly, the private lending industry that has enjoyed the huge profits and borne no risk (due to the federal government’s guarantee of all loans) in this unfair and often corrupt system are wholly-opposed to the bill.

The University’s opposition to this long-overdue reform is especially troubling given the recent scandal involving University Executive Vice President John Affleck-Graves taking almost $60,000 in what were, at best, inappropriate payments from the student lending industry which seeks to do business with Notre Dame.

The University should reverse course and join other leading Indiana institutions of higher education, including Indiana University, who are supporting this legislation. Notre Dame knows better and Notre Dame should do better.

Sincerely,

Tim Barnes

alumnus

class of 1999

Sept. 17