Obama Administration Gives Orders to File ‘GI Bill’ Trademark

By Joseph Mandour on May 3, 2012

flag-200x132 Los Angeles – President Obama recently gave a speech to members of the military and their families where he spoke about his outrage that members of the military and their families were being targeted and taken advantage of because of their GI Bill. The President said to the crowd, “Sometimes you’re dealing with folks who aren’t interested in helping you” and “they don’t care about you, they care about the cash.” For this reason, President Obama ordered the Department of Veterans Affairs to file for the trademark ‘GI Bill’. The Obama Administration believes that trademark filing will help to stop for-profit schools with “deceptively and fraudulently” targeting military families.

In 2010, President Obama created a Consumer Financial Protection Bureau that was formed to specifically aid veterans, members of the military and their families. Within this Bureau was a special Office of Service Member Affairs which worked with these families to “make better informed decisions regarding consumer financial products and services.” However, after two years it seems as though military families are still being targeted by private for-profit colleges and universities that are eager to enlist these individuals for federal money in its pocket, also known as the GI Bill.

In his speech this week, Obama gave an example of a for-profit college that recruited marines with brain injuries who couldn’t remember what they signed up for. He called this example “appalling and disgraceful” and urged the crowd to be aware of these types of people by saying, “they’re trying to swindle and hoodwink you.” Many of these colleges and universities have created websites to give the appearance that it is connected to the government in order to appeal to these families in particular.

President Obama is scheduled to sign an order that includes programs such as “Know Before You Owe”, which schools can participate in through a voluntary basis. The “Know Before You Owe” program will allow potential students to get an estimate of just how much their education may cost them in total so that they are not blindsided by additional fees, interest, and/or penalties. This will also help with determining if a college or university is considered accredited before enrolling.

In an opposing view of the President’s actions, Sgt. 1st Class Brian Cain stated, “To me the president needs to be taking care of world-sized problems” and “this is kind of like trying to kill a fly with an M-1 Abrams tank.” Sgt. Cain stated that his chain in command already has programs set up to look out for these scams. The Association of Private Sector Colleges and Universities, a representative of for-profit schools, stated it was “disappointed Obama decided to bypass the Congress.”

The GI Bill is estimated to pay out a staggering $9 billion this year alone to educate approximately 600,000 veterans. It is no wonder that according to a recent report by the Senate, for-profit schools spend a combined total of $3.7 billion on recruiting and marketing alone.

Related Articles: