N.Y. Governor Vetoes Scholarship Aid for For-Profits

December 20, 2017

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo vetoed legislation Tuesday that would have extended the state's tuition-free scholarships to for-profit institutions.

The legislation would have allowed for-profit institutions to participate in the Enhanced Tuition Award that the legislature adopted earlier this year in response to concerns that the state's tuition-free program for New York's public colleges would put nonprofit, private institutions at a competitive disadvantage.

"This bill, had it passed, would have been a stark departure from New York's record of leadership in protecting students and consumers," said Yan Cao, a fellow at the Century Foundation, in a statement. "The difference between for-profit and not-for-profit colleges in New York is crystal clear. Evidence shows that New Yorkers who attend for-profit schools are twice as likely to default on student loans compared to those who attend not-for-profit schools. And New Yorkers have filed thousands of claims of predatory practices at for-profit schools."

However, the Association of Proprietary Colleges called Cuomo's decision unfair to women, veterans and people of color.

"Governor Cuomo turned his back on nearly 40,000 New York college students who are earning associate, bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees at state Board of Regents-certified proprietary colleges by vetoing a measure that would have allowed them to apply for the state's new Enhanced Tuition Award," said Donna Gurnett, president and chief executive officer of the association, in a statement. "Excluding these students is extremely shortsighted, as they are exactly the type of student New York needs and should be empowering."

The APC says nearly 70 percent of its institutions' students are women and 41 percent identify as black or Hispanic, according to Gurnett.

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