As noted in the Sept. 11 Economy & Business article “Borrowing crisis especially dire at for-profit schools ,” a significant factor that will determine whether federal student loan borrowers will repay or default — and whether the taxpayer is repaid — is the school they attended. As a servicer of federal loans, we use this and other relevant data, such as how often borrowers access their online loan accounts or whether they completed their degrees, to drive outreach strategies. As a result, borrowers whose loans are serviced by us are 48 percent less likely to default than other borrowers. In fact, when borrowers fall behind on their federal student loans, we find that nine times out of 10, if we can talk to them, we can help them avoid default. The federal student loan program should prioritize data-driven intervention strategies that focus on connecting with at-risk borrowers — before and after borrowing — to lead to better outcomes for borrowers and curb defaults.
Jack Remondi, Wilmington, Del.
The writer is president and chief executive of Navient.