HBCU Presidents Call Obama to the Table on Student Loans

The same day the U.S. House of Representatives sent a bill on student loan rates to the White House for President Obama’s signature, a group of HBCU presidents sent a letter to the White House requesting a meeting with the president to “collaboratively explore viable alternatives to [the policy which further restricted Parent plus Loan eligibility] and examine less punitive student loan underwriting standards.”

The letter — which was signed by the presidents of Clark Atlanta, Alcorn State, Bowie State, North Carolina A&T, Southern, Coppin State, Howard, Tuskegee, Kentucky State, Morgan State and Delaware State universities — decries the “harmful effects this policy change has had on access to college nationally, its disproportionate impact on the HBCU community  over the past year and its devastating impact on student enrollment in the coming year, and beyond.”

The presidents called the policy “an abuse of the Department’s discretion and represents a failure on the part of the Department to negotiate in good faith with the higher education community — and with the HBCU community in particular.”

The Senate-approved Bipartisan Student Loan Certainty Act, which would immediately reduce interest rates on student loans taken out for the upcoming semester, passed the House easily yesterday. It ties student loan rates to the success of the economy, a policy the White House has previously endorsed.

Instead of student loan rates being set by Congress, under the new measure, rates would be determined by the financial markets. Loan rates would be fixed for the signed year, but may vary from year to year thereafter, depending on the ebbs and flows of the economy. This fall, undergraduate students would face 3.9 percent interest rates on subsidized and unsubsidized loans, graduate students would pay 4.9 percent and parents loans would be offered at 6.4 percent. It caps interest rates at 8.25 percent for undergraduates, 9.5 percent for graduate students and 10.5 for parents.

Some are concerned that this bill is a short-term fix that may cost students more in the long-run.

“The bottom line is that students will pay more under this bill than if Congress did nothing, and low rates will soon give way to rates that are even higher than the 6.8 percent rate that Congress is trying to avoid,”  Chris Lindstrom, higher education program director for the consumer group US PIRG, told The Huffington Post.

Was Alonzo Lee Recruiting for North Carolina A&T…On Morgan State's Dime?

It’s a viable question when you consider the strong recruiting class that North Carolina A&T just signed up, and the nine players that Morgan State University was able to bring in. The rumors about Alonzo Lee coming to A&T were well in motion prior to the announcement in early January, so there’s no question Lee had the benefit of selling players on wherever he was destined to wind up.

But the ethical question does come up on if Lee was recruiting players to Morgan, only to then sell them on his vision for A&T once the new year rolled around. Did Morgan State, in essence, have Lee on the payroll while he was bolstering the squad at his future place of employment?

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It's Alonzo Lee at A&T

Alonzo Lee has been named head football coach at North Carolina A&T, bringing to a close one of the more intriguing coaching searches in recent history.

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If Not Alonzo Lee, Then Who Should Lead A&T?

I actually think that Alonzo Lee would be a good fit as head coach of the North Carolina A&T football team. He’s familiar with the area, and should have no problem recruiting given his record of success at a number of MEAC schools.

And therein lies the problem with many of the A&T fans. He’s been at a number of MEAC schools.

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Alonzo Lee Rumored to be Next Head Football Coach at North Carolina A&T

The rumors continue, but they appear to be getting louder. Alonzo Lee is expected to be named the next head football coach at North Carolina A&T, with interim head coach George Ragsdale staying on as assistant head coach.

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