US President Barack Obama warned Americans on Saturday against unscrupulous college recruiters who he said prey on military veterans and service members considering higher education.
"The sad truth is that there are people out there who are less interested in helping our men and women in uniform get ahead and more interested in making a buck," the president said in his weekly radio and Internet address.
Obama said that these recruiters bombard potential students with emails and pressure them into taking high-interest loans while misleading them about credit transfers and job placement programs.
One of the worst examples, the president noted, was a college recruiter who had visited a Marine barracks and enrolled Marines with brain injuries so severe that some of them couldn't recall what courses the recruiter had signed them up for.
"That's appalling. It's disgraceful," Obama said. "And even though the vast majority of schools do the right thing, we need to guard against the bad actors who don't."
The president reminded listeners that on Friday, he had signed an executive order making it more difficult for anyone to prey on veterans.
The order requires providing veterans with a fact sheet that lays out all the information about financial aid and paying for college.
Universities and colleges are also required to offer counseling to help veteran students finish their degrees even if they have to move to other locations or deploy.
"When our men and women in uniform succeed, our country succeeds," Obama said. "And as long as I'm president, I'm going to make sure that anyone who serves this country gets every opportunity they deserve."
Source: AFP American Edition