Bachelor's programs cost an average of 20 percent more, and associate's programs an average of quadruple public school tuition. This isn't too surprising when you look at how for-profit colleges are spending their money. The Harkin report found that 22.7 percent of revenue at for-profits goes to marketing and recruitment, that for-profits have an average profit margin of 19.7 percent, and pay an average of $7.3 million a year to their chief executives. That's all money that drives up tuition without going to educational programming. Actual instruction made up a paltry 17.2 percent of expenses. As a consequence, a far greater percentage of for-profit college students are in debt:
You're paying for it
In the 2009-2010 school year, $7.5 billion in Pell Grants, 50 percent of Defense Department education aid, and 37 percent of GI bill aid went to for-profits, money that, because of the programs' much higher costs, financed significantly less education than it would have if directly at public or private non-profit institutions.