CFPB student loan watchdog Rohit Chopra joins Ed Dept
- Rohit Chopra, a vocal critic as the student loan ombudsman for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, has joined the U.S. Department of Education as a senior level official.
- The Huffington Post reports that Chopra began work Monday, where Education Undersecretary Ted Mitchell said his “experience in protecting borrowers and his expertise in financial services policy will advance and deepen” the department’s efforts to strengthen student aid programs.
- Chopra has gone to bat for students against Department of Education student loan servicers, colleges and universities accused of fraud, and the department itself, but some wonder whether he’ll be able to effect much change from the inside.
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau was founded as a financial regulator, and it was a bit of a leap for it to become so involved in education. Following the mortgage crisis, however, Chopra was among the first to see similarities between the behaviors of non-bank mortgage lenders and for-profit college companies that preference enrollment profits over student outcomes. He has been a prominent advocate of policies that allow student loan holders to refinance their debt and discharge it in bankruptcy proceedings, something the department has opposed. And, he has criticized the department’s oversight of its student loan servicers and collection contractors.
Like Acting Secretary John B. King Jr., Chopra has barely a year to make his mark on the department before President Barack Obama’s final term ends.
- The Huffington Post The Obama administration just hired one of its biggest critics
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