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Biden-Harris Administration Approves $6.1 Billion Group Student Loan Discharge for 317,000 Borrowers Who Attended The Art Institutes

Biden-Harris Administration Approves $6.1 Billion Group Student Loan Discharge for 317,000 Borrowers Who Attended The Art Institutes

U.S. Department of Education

May 1, 2024
The Biden-Harris Administration today announced the approval of more than $6.1 billion in automatic student loan relief to nearly 317,000 borrowers who enrolled at any Art Institute campus on or after Jan. 1, 2004, through Oct. 16, 2017. The U.S. Department of Education (Department) found that The Art Institutes and its parent company, Education Management Corporation (EDMC), made pervasive and substantial misrepresentations to prospective students about postgraduation employment rates, salaries, and career services during that time. In October 2017, EDMC sold its remaining Art Institute campuses, and all existing Art Institute campuses closed under separate ownership in September 2023. Today’s action brings the total amount of student relief approved by the Biden-Harris Administration to almost $160 billion for nearly 4.6 million borrowers.
“For more than a decade, hundreds of thousands of hopeful students borrowed billions to attend The Art Institutes and got little but lies in return. That ends today—thanks to the Biden-Harris Administration’s work with the attorneys general offices of Iowa, Massachusetts, and Pennsylvania,” said U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona.  “We must continue to protect borrowers from predatory institutions—and work toward a higher education system that is affordable to students and taxpayers.”
The Department independently reviewed evidence provided by the attorneys general offices of Iowa, Massachusetts, and Pennsylvania, which conducted multi-year investigations into, and brought lawsuits against, The Art Institutes and EDMC. The attorneys general of Pennsylvania and Iowa provided materials obtained from investigations into these entities, including internal employment data, admissions training manuals, and the school’s employment advertisements. The Massachusetts attorney general provided information obtained during an investigation into the New England Institute of Art—the Massachusetts Art Institute campus—including internal employment verification forms, other internal records of graduate employment outcomes, advertisements, and statements from former students and employees.
Today’s announcement is another example of the strong partnerships between the Department and state attorneys general and their shared commitment to protecting federal student loan borrowers from predatory schools.
“The Art Institutes preyed on the hopes of students attempting to better their lives through education,” said Federal Student Aid Chief Operating Officer Richard Cordray. “We cannot replace the time stolen from these students, but we can lift the burden of their debt. We remain committed to working with our federal and state partners to protect borrowers.”
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