A for-profit college with four campuses in the state is getting sued for supposedly pushing students into high-interest loans. ITT Technical Institute is being accused of peddling expensive private loans that students were likely to be unable to pay. While the suit is being filed by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan supports it, comparing it to her lawsuit against another for-profit school, Westwood College.
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“What Westwood students have suffered is not an anomaly,” Madigan said. “Thousands of students lured in by the for-profit college industry across the country have found themselves stuck in a cycle of crushing debt.” ITT operates campuses in Orland Park, Arlington Heights, Oak Brook, and Springfield. At the center of the suit is ITT’s private student loan program, which is first offered with no interest, but only if it’s paid off by the end of a student’s first academic year. After that, ITT charges 16 percent interest over 10 years.
According to the CFPB, ITT’s own analysis estimated that 64 percent of students would default on those loans.