Stories

The IRE Resource Center is a major research library containing more than 27,000 investigative stories.

Most of our stories are not available for download but can be easily ordered by contacting the Resource Center directly at 573-882-3364 or rescntr@ire.org where a researcher can help you pinpoint what you need.

Search results for "student debt" ...

  • STARZ's Fail State

    Executive produced by news legend Dan Rather, FAIL STATE investigates the dark side of American higher education, chronicling the decades of policy decisions in Washington, D.C. that have given rise to a powerful and highly-predatory for-profit college industry. With echoes of the subprime mortgage crisis, the film lays bare how for-profit colleges exploit millions of low-income and minority students, leaving them with worthless degrees and drowning in student loan debt. Combining five years of research and interviews from over 60 experts, policymakers, whistleblowers, and students defrauded by their colleges, director Alexander Shebanow presents a searing exposé on the for-profit college industry and the lawmakers enabling widespread fraud and abuse in American higher education. FAIL STATE debuted on STARZ on December 17th, 2018.
  • Who’s getting rich off your student debt?

    The student loan program was supposed to help open the door to higher education, but it’s become something else: a profit center for Wall Street and the government. Now the program is making things worse for some of the people it was designed to help. This episode of Reveal explores how this happened and who’s winning and losing as a result.
  • Walden University: For-Profit Predator Revealed

    During a months-long investigation, NBC News learned that students at Walden University were lured in by the promise of an affordable higher degree only to find themselves crushed by staggering amounts of debt, with no degree in sight. The online school is the U.S. flagship of Laureate International, the largest for-profit education company in the world, which bills itself as “Here for Good,” and paid “honorary chancellor” Bill Clinton $17.6 million over five years.
  • Who’s getting rich off your student debt?

    America’s student loan system was created in the 1960s as part of an effort to alleviate poverty and inequality. But by 2016, some 42 million Americans owed an astonishing $1.3 trillion on their student loans, and the debt load had doubled in eight years. How did a program intended to help deserving students go to college become a profit center for Wall Street, private investors, even the government? We sought to document how the nation’s student loan crisis unfolded – and who has profited from it.
  • Degree of Debt

    “Degree of Debt” is a multi-state investigation by Raycom Media that exposes one of the most crippling impacts on the U.S. economy, the virtual explosion of student debt. The numbers are staggering. Over 41 million students owe a collective $1.4 trillion; a figure that dwarfs credit card and auto loan debt combined. Of that $41 million in debt, nearly 8.1 million of those people are currently in default. According to the Congressional Budget Office, over the next decade the federal government will make $81 billion in profit from student loans, over $8 billion a year. The Raycom investigative series used several federal databases along with shoe leather reporting to educate our viewers/readers on the biggest offenders and what needs to change. http://www.vimeo.com/leezurik/IREDegreeofDebt https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Y09_yQ9Bwo&feature=youtu.be
  • Black Arts

    This is an investigation of San Francisco's for-profit Academy of Art University, the country's largest private art school. I examine the questionable business model that produced a nearly billion-dollar fortune for its owners, the Stephens family. Meanwhile, the university produced abysmal graduation rates, high levels of student debt and poor job placement. Former employees alleged illegal compensation for high-pressure recruiting tactics. And the university had serious land-use violations on most of its 40-some prime properties, benefiting, critics say, from close ties to leading San Francisco politicians.
  • Sports At Any Cost

    We teamed up with The Chronicle of Higher Education to tell how in an era of soaring college costs and mounting student debt, universities are spending billions of dollars to prop up their sports departments. Our overview feature showcases deep reporting from Georgia State, which has invested millions into a football program that hasn't attracted much support.
  • Debt and Debtor

    "Debt and Debtor" examines New York University as a prolific generator of student debt. In fact, NYU create more student debt than any other not-for-profit school in the country- some students end up paying hundreds of thousands of dollars paying back and servicing the debt for their undergradaute NYU educations.
  • School's pursuit of profit leaves students behind

    This series is centered on the business of for-profit education. The first of two main articles took a broad look at the issue, and at Leigh Valley College in particular. The second focused on the school's financial impact on students. It examined the relationship between the country's no.2 education company, Career Education Corp, and the country's no.1 student loan provider, Sallie Mae. The article concluded that LVC is setting students up for a spiral of debt. Subsequent articles followed the impact of the first two.
  • Doctors in Debt

    Dallas Business Journal examines the federal government's "troubled efforts to collect on $168.8 million in student loans remaining from the defunct Health Education Assistance Loans (HEAL) program. About 1,700 chiropractors, dentists and other former medical students have found their starting salaries too low to repay their student debts, the story reveals. The Journal's analysis of the government data about the debtors shows "discrepancies in payment records, departures from agency rules and confusion among those running the system." The defaulted doctors' debts could cost some of them their licenses, Patrick reports.