InsideHigherEd ran the following post on yesterday's blog:
"Alumni and students of the Charleston School of Law are angry over rumors that the for-profit law school will be sold to the InfiLaw System, which operates three other for-profit law schools, The Post and Courier reported. The Charleston School of Law has not confirmed that a sale is imminent, but did announce last week that it had signed a "management services agreement" with InfiLaw that the law school said would improve the quality of programs at Charleston. But Kathleen Chewning, president of the Charleston School of Law Alumni Association, said that her members and students were concerned because they believe their law school is perceived as having more quality than those owned by InfiLaw. InfiLaw declined to comment, and its webpage says only that an "important announcement" is coming soon."
According to The Post and Courier, "InfiLaw currently owns three other law schools: Charlotte School of Law, Florida Coastal School of Law and Phoenix School of Law."
When asked about the sale of the Charleston School of Law to the InfiLaw System, Charleston Mayor Riley said "he didn't think students and graduates needed to be alarmed because the school, which always has been a for-profit operation, still will be the Charleston School of Law."
I suppose Mayor Riley has a point. What's the big deal about one for-profit institution purchasing another? It would be much more jarring if Charleston School of Law was a non-profit institution bought by a for-profit company. On some levels, this even makes sense. Now the Charleston School of Law's students will have access to all of the resources within the InfiLaw System.
I still do not understand the for-profit higher education system. There are competing interests -- the focus cannot totally be on the students when the shareholders are involved. Also, using federal monies to finance the education of students at a for-profit institution seems outlandish.
And I'm not the only one who thinks this way. "Attorneys general from more than a dozen states, including Massachusetts, are pushing Congress to restrict federal funding to for-profit colleges, which face growing complaints that they often leave students with piles of debt but not enough training to find high-paying jobs. '[The] bill will ensure that scarce federal education dollars are used to educate students rather than to finance marketing campaigns and recruitment operations at schools more focused on making a profit than assisting students,' said Attorney General Martha Coakley of Massachusetts."