Perdido 03

Perdido 03

Thursday, February 17, 2011

NYU Students Carry Most Debt Of Any Private College In Country

NYU students take to Washington Square to protest debt levels at the college:

NYU students have a lot of debt and they are sick of it, apparently. Earlier this afternoon a group of students raged (peacefully) against the machine in Washington Square Park, donning masks and t-shirts on which they had written how much they owe. The aim was to bring attention to the fact that NYU's students carry a cumulative $659 million in debt, the highest in the country for a non-profit college or university.

The majority of the peaceful demonstration revolved around those in attendance donning masks and shirts emblazoned with their debt while standing very, very still for a few moments. It was organized by NYU Local and MTV's Andrew Jenks.

The Local's EIC Charlie Eisenhood—who spoke in the park about the burdens of student debt without blaming anyone—had some high hopes. Before it he told the Washington Square News that "I'd like NYU to feel compelled to put out a statement both on their own policy on financial aid and maybe what we could do nationally. If anybody who could offer a solution, it should be NYU." We'll find out soon enough if NYU takes the bait.

Yeah, the brain trust at NYU was too busy buying up downtown real estate to respond to the protest.

They did, however, raise tuition and fees just a little bit to cover the higher real estate costs (the market's up these days, you know!)


  1. NYU, a non-profit university? Only by the narrowest of definitions. In reality, NYU is a real estate development company with a education subsidiary.

    The place is an ongoing fraud. Aside from its hostile takeover of Greenwich Village, the East Village, etc., the school lures students with celebrity academics, celebrities that undergrads will never see.

    I made the serious mistake of getting my Masters there, mainly for convenience sake (and, admittedly, they gave my a fairly generous financial aid package). Nevertheless, of the 16 graduate-level course I took, only three (!!!) were taught by full-time, tenured faculty. The rest were taught by low-wage doctoral adjuncts who ranged from ok to really awful.

    On a broader note, recent news stories have revealed that more money is owed for college loans - loans taken out in the hopes of qualifying for non-existent jobs - than credit cards.

    Seeing students as profit centers, leading them into lifelong debt, debt that will constrain their career and life choices, may provide the spark for a new wave of student activism.

    Come to think of it, could there be a link between student loan debt, which is bundled into securities by Wall Strreet, and the push by ed deformers to insist on college for everyone? Could they be using the public schools to create a captive market for their debt peonage model?

  2. if i decided to enroll at NYU for undergrad, i'd be in about $120k of debt....dodged a real bullet there