CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Three colleges in North Carolina are accused of getting rich off students in debt, according to the North Carolina Attorney General's Office.
Another nine schools are being monitored for potentially offering students high-cost, low-quality programs.
Two of the schools that have been flagged are in Charlotte.
Federal investigators said the Charlotte School of Law and Kings College is in the warning zone for misleading students by letting them build up more debt than their degrees could ever pay off.
"It's hard out here. People don't even have the money to get into college," Zavion Rice, a Kings College freshman, said.
Kings College is accused of taking advantage of students in the administrative assistance program who are now trying to pay off years of student loans with secretary salaries.
"A lot of people should have a backup plan," freshman Darius Morehand said.
Morehand is a graphic design student. He plans to work two jobs just to pay down his loans.
Investigators can't take any action to help students who are drowning in debt, because the Department of Education won't punish schools anymore.
Freshman Kristen Maw said, "We're struggling. It shouldn't be a good idea for them to not help us, because students can't really speak up for themselves. It has to be someone bigger."
United States Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos doesn't think the government has the authority to regulate which degrees can be offered to students.
Attorney General Josh Stein said he's suing the Department of Education because it won't protect students of for-profit schools.
Channel 9 asked him if students of those schools will ever get their money back.
"If it happened in the past where they were deceived, they should let my office know. We could have a claim against them,” Stein said. “We've gone after a number of for-profit schools, gotten refunds for students who were taken advantage of."
Seventeen other states are also suing the Department of Education, so Stein hopes that added pressure will lead to results for students soon.
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