The Institute of Cost Accountants of India (ICMAI) has issued the admit card for Foundation, Intermediate, and Final examination 2018. The candidates who have successfully registered for the test can download their admit card online.

Earlier the candidates would get their admit card by post/ courier. However, from December 2013 term, it was decided that the dispatch of the hard copy of the admit card will be discontinued. Hence the admit card of ICMAI June 2018 is available on the Official Website of the Institute only, and student can download the same. 

To download the admit card, visit the official website of the Institute at icmai.in. On the homepage of the Institute, you will see a tab for Updates. Under the tab, click on the link for “Download Admit Card“. A new page will open in which the candidates need to select the course from the drop-down menu. Next, the students need to enter their rrent registration number. Click on Print Admit Card button to submit the details. Download and take a print out of it as you need to carry it on the day of the test.

ICFAI 2018 Admit Card

Along with the ICMAI 2018 Admit Card, the candidates also need to carry an identification proof.

The admit card will consist of details such as personal details of the candidate, exam date, timings and address of the test centre. The candidates must report to the allotted test centre as per the schedule given on their admit card.

The exam for Foundation/ Intermediate/ Final programme is a pen paper-based test consisting of questions to be answered descriptively.

The entrance test for ICMAI for Foundation/ Intermediate/ Final June 2018 will be held at Adipur-Kachchh(Gujarat), Agartala, Agra, Ahmedabad, Akurdi, Allahabad, Asansol, Aurangabad, Bangalore, Baroda, Berhampur(Ganjam), Bhilai, Bhilwara, Bhopal, Bewar City(Rajasthan), Bhubaneswar, Bilaspur, Bokaro, Calicut, Chandigarh, Chennai, Coimbatore, Cuttack, Dehradun, Delhi, Dhanbad , Duliajan (Assam), Durgapur, Ernakulam, Erode, Faridabad, Ghaziabad, Guntur, Guwahati, Haridwar, Hazaribagh, Howrah, Hyderabad, Indore, Jaipur, Jabalpur, Jalandhar, Jammu, Jamshedpur, Jodhpur, Kalyan, Kannur, Kanpur, Kolhapur, Kolkata, Kota, Kottayam (Malappuram), Lucknow, Ludhiana, Madurai, Mangalore, Mumbai, Mysore, Nagpur, Naihati, Nasik, Nellore, Neyveli, Noida, Palakkad, Panaji (Goa), Patiala, Patna, Pondicherry, Port Blair, Pune, Raipur,Rajahmundry, Ranchi, Rourkela, Salem, Sambalpur, Shillong, Siliguri, Solapur, Srinagar, Surat, Thrissur, Tiruchirapalli,Tirunelveli, Trivandrum, Udaipur, Vapi, Vashi, Vellore, Vijayawada, Vindhyanagar, Waltair.

The entrance test will also be conducted at two overseas centers at Bahrain, Dubai and Muscat.

The Institute of Cost Accountants of India (ICAI), was previously known as the Institute of Cost & Works Accountants of India (ICWAI). The Institute recommends the Cost Accounting Standards to be followed by companies in India to which statutory maintenance of cost records applicable. ICAI works closely with the industries, various departments of Government of India, State governments in India and other Regulating Authorities in India, such as Reserve Bank of India, Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority, and many more.


Aspiring Medico Turned Away From AIIMS MBBS Exam As Aadhar QR Code Couldn’t Be Scanned, Delhi HC Notice To Centre, AIIMS, UIDAI

As the results of AIIMS MBBS entrance examination is to be announced on June 18, the Delhi High Court has sought to know the stand of the Centre, AIIMS and the Unique Identification Authority of India on a petition filed by an aspiring medical studen…

Abhimanyu Bishnoi moved high court narrating how he was turned away from the examination centre in Gulbarga, Karnataka on May 25 with the mandatory admit card, photographs and his original Aadhaar card. To his shock, when he produced the Aadhar c… …

To his shock, when he produced the Aadhar card for verification at the gate of the examination centre, the staff engaged in the verification process told him that the QR Code on his card could not be scanned and that his Aadhar Card is not genuine….

He was not allowed to sit for the examination for which, he said, he had been preparing for over two years. In his petition filed through advocate Akshay Srivastava, Senior Associate at PSP Legal along with Advocate Prakhar Deep, Associate at Link L…

They also contended that the applicant was issued the admit card only after he had provided all his details including the Aadhar number in the online application. His counsel also informed the court that the QR Code of Aadhar card was being verified…

They have urged the court to quash the AIIMS Entrance Examination – 2018 and direct a fresh examination to be conducted within a reasonable period while also seeking a stay on the publication of final result cum merit list till the disposal of this P…

The counsel submitted that grave injustice would be caused to the petitioner if the results of the exam is declared without providing him another opportunity….


Student loan debt and the cost of college are out of control and climbing

Student loan debt and the cost of college are out of control and climbing

The benefits of higher education are on the minds of nearly 2 million college-bound high school students graduating this spring.

To make matters worse, federal student loan rates will rise 13.5 percent this summer. The long-awaited and urgently needed reform of our nation’s higher education system will have to wait at least another year.Advancing reforms to help make higher education more affordable were touted as a leading priority for the 115th Congress and the 2016 Republican Party Platform. Yet, the House has yet to pass its Higher Education Act, (Prosper Act).

Just a few days ago Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), Chairman of the Senate’s Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, told the New York Times education conference, “the Senate will not produce promised higher education legislation this year,” adding, “the Democrats won’t do it, they want to wait until next year to see if they’re in better shape politically.” Sadly, these two events are not among the many gifts Republicans were expecting to receive after the Obama administration’s “graduation.”

Federal student loan debt and the cost of college education are out of control and climbing at an unsustainable trajectory.

The primary reason for this is three-fold: unfettered access to federal student loans; a plethora of overly-generous loan forgiveness and multiple repayment plans which encourages over-borrowing and frees schools from the responsibility to charge prices that actually match the market value of the degrees they offer; and the fact that nearly half of undergraduates take at least six years to earn their degrees.

To underscore the meaning of this third cause, four years ago the average cost of just one additional year at a four-year public university was nearly $64,000 in tuition, fees, books, living expenses and lost wages.

The guardians of U.S. higher education complex will give you a litany of other reasons why college costs have increased, but as research fellow at the Family Policy Institute of Washington, Blaine Conzatti, summed it up two years ago, “Millions of students have become burdened with previously unimaginable levels of student loan debt needed to finance schooling that has been made artificially expensive by government intervention.”

Almost without exception, market costs rise whenever there is an artificial stimulus that acts to increase demand. Moreover, this phenomenon has been especially evident in the interaction between increased student loan availability and overall college enrollment and price inflation since 2010.

Progressive democratic thinking about tuition-free schools has increased access to federal student loans. Moreover, and overly generous debt forgiveness has led to unrealistic expectations on the part of millions of students which:

(1) helps explain current loan delinquency rates which are now nearly as high as they were on subprime mortgages during the housing crisis

(2) discourages personal responsibility

(3) contributes to rising college cost

Removing a sizable portion of a student’s financial responsibility to repay his/her federal student loans encourages students to borrow regardless of whether or not doing so is a smart financial decision. While federal student loans can help facilitate college access, they should not guarantee access to any institution at any price.

After several years of congressional hearings on higher education reform to explore opportunities for promoting innovation, access and completion; simplifying and improving student aid; reducing college costs and improving college affordability; empowering students and families to make informed decisions; and ensuring strong accountability and a limited federal role, the inability of the 115th Congress to produce and pass a bipartisan higher education reauthorization bill for the president is a national disgrace.

As sad as it is, it appears the only way a major overhaul of our outdated, costly and Byzantine system of higher education will occur is if the Republicans pick up more seats in the Senate.

Despite the pronouncements of political pundits, this may not be that difficult. Of the 35 senate seats on the ballot this Nov. 26 are held by senators who caucus with the Democrats, and only nine are held by Republicans.

Democrats will work very hard to protect their incumbents in the 10 states which Trump won in the 2016 Presidential Election. But this will not be easy considering Republicans have done pretty well in addressing the top four policy issues on the minds of voting Americans come this November, which are the economy, security, health care, and seniors issues according to a recent major poll by Morning Consult.

The real question is what will Republicans do to address education, the fifth top policy issue on the minds of voters this November? The good news is that House Republicans met last week to discuss the Prosper Act.

House passage of the Prosper Act will help Republican candidates defend the Act’s many worthy provisions when higher education reform emerges as front and center during coming debates.

Passage of the Act would be a fine addition to the long list of significant Republican accomplishments over the last year and a half. It also signals that Republicans tried really hard to pass the type of education reform that will promote our economic competitiveness and prosperity.

Unfortunately, having to wait another year or two for a major overhaul of the higher education is another example of how some Members of the 115th Congress refuse to work as responsibly as they should for the people who elected them. The inability of Congress to staunch the unacceptably high cost of education in a bipartisan manner has been a national disgrace.

Though not perfect, the Prosper Act is a very responsible step forward. Republican victories in November may very well depend on an astute and well-reasoned defense of the urgent need to streamline the student loan program, cap loan limits, cut unnecessary regulation and increase grants for undergraduates who truly need them. Students, parents and taxpayers deserve a higher education system that works for them.


The Dept. of Education Plans to Stop Using Private Debt Collectors

The Dept. of Education Plans to Stop Using Private Debt Collectors

The Department of Education will stop using private debt collectors to handle overdue loan payments. This decision came to light after a May 23 legal filing by department attorneys. In February, the department announced it ended contracts with several private collection agencies for giving borrowers inaccurate information.

Attorneys for the Department of Education asked the U.S. Court of Federal Claims to dismiss a lawsuit filed by several debt collection agencies. In the filing, they said the Department of Education plans to change its debt collection practices, thus rendering the lawsuit useless, The Washington Post reported.

Rather than relying on private agencies, the department plans to let the companies that service the loans collect on overdue payments. The department lawyers said this move will shift the focus to better customer service and proactive outreach to give options to borrowers who are late on payments. This will allow borrowers to make other arrangements before they end up defaulting on their loans.

This should come as a welcome change to consumer advocate groups who have long criticized the department’s use of debt collection agencies. Debt collection agencies can be aggressive in their approach and don’t work to help borrowers come up with a solution for managing their debt.

Clare McCann, a former policy adviser during the Obama Administration, said that not only are debt collectors unwilling to help borrowers but they actually “complicate the process by taking defaulted students out of one system and putting them into another.”

Furthermore, using collection agencies also costs the federal government quite a bit of money. In January, congressional Democrats sent a letter to Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, noting that collection costs take 20 cents on the dollar.

Last year, the federal government spent over $700 million to collect on the loans of less than seven million defaulted borrowers. This is equivalent to what the government pays to service 33 million borrowers who pay their loans every month, The Post reported.

This recent move by the department is part of their bigger plan to overhaul the way student loans are serviced. They are currently working on Next Gen, which is the department’s attempt to modernize the ways student loans are processed and simplify the way borrowers repay their loans.

It isn’t entirely clear how this will play out, but eliminating debt collection agencies from the picture will likely be good news for most borrowers. Hopefully, borrowers will be able to find more options to help them get in good standing on the debt and avoid default.


Working with drones: Still not a career for most?

Karan Kamdar, president, Indian Drone Racing League, hopes the government will relax norms; and Bhavesh Sangani (below) sees drone flying only as a part-time job. Photo: Aniruddha Chowdhury/Mint


While studying at an engineering college in Tumkur, Karnataka, in 2009, Bhavesh Sangani bought a small toy: a remote-controlled helicopter. Before he started flying it, he tied it with a thread, just like a kite, scared it might land somewhere else. Something worse happened—the flight crashed and the toy was wrecked. What remained with Sangani, however, was the desire to fly something with a remote control. The same year, he started a club in college that made DIY remote-controlled flights or drones. “By the time I graduated in 2011, we had built 36 remote-controlled electrical planes, all self-taught through the internet,” says the 28-year-old. The hobby helped Sangani land a job as an engineer with Quest Global, an engineering services company based in Bengaluru, straight out of college.

It has been nine years since Sangani picked up drone-flying as a hobby. In this time, he has seen it evolve from a geeky pastime to a fledgling, yet promising, career option that is in demand in several sectors—from movie shoots and public sector undertakings to mining companies and survey agencies.

Bhavesh Sangani with his drones. Photo: Hemant Mishra/Mint

“Since I have a lot of experience flying these birds, I can easily choose to become a full-time test pilot for new products for mapping or surveying in a few years. There is a lot of scope for future growth of this technology,” says Sangani.

Globally, the market for piloted drones is forecast to more than double by 2022, according to a European Commission impact assessment report released in December 2015. The report estimates some 150,000 jobs by 2050 in Europe alone. According to an estimate last year by the non-profit body, Consortium of Unmanned Vehicle Systems India (Cuvsi), there are 40,000 drones in the Indian sky and Indians have spent more than Rs40 crore buying civil drones, even though their civilian use is illegal.

Karan Kamdar, 33, president of the Indian Drone Racing League (IDRL), which organizes drone-racing events in colleges, moved from the US to India in 2014 to explore a start-up experimenting in drone photography, DIY drone kits and robotics. When the Indian Institute of Technology, Gandhinagar approached him in 2016 to conduct a First Person View (FPV) drone race (in which a pilot can view video feed from a camera attached to a drone through a headset or goggles) on its campus, he knew this would be big. “When this offer came to us, there was just a small group of Bengaluru hobbyists who did FPV racing. I decided to put up a website to request for teams,” he says. Within 24 hours, Kamdar and his team had hundreds of inquiries. The Gandhinagar event was India’s first competitive drone race; it was won by Sangani.

Soon, Kamdar started getting inquiries from institutes, drone pilots and students who wanted to make their own drones, and teams and individuals interested in participating in the races. “Since the first league, I haven’t had time,” he says. “We’ve conducted 17 events across the country in one and a half years, have grown to a community of 800 pro pilots who are training others on how to build and fly their own quads or drones, have a dedicated team of designers who create challenging tracks for their pro pilots, and have even held a night race. And this is just racing drones that I’m talking about.” Kamdar has also launched a marketplace for drone spare parts, runs workshops on drone-making and piloting, and is the go-between for projects and corporate events for the pro pilots in his community. Kamdar charges Rs15,000 for hosting an IDRL event, on top of actual cost. Most pilots work part-time since it’s a niche career. “Our pilots have a career in aerial photography, mining industry, testing for drone start-ups and many other undeveloped fields,” says Kamdar, adding that he hopes the government will relax its policies so that the hobby can become a lucrative career.

In October 2014, the directorate general of civil aviation (DGCA) imposed a blanket ban on all civil operations of drones in the Indian airspace, with permission possible on a case-by-case basis. “If I’m shooting a film and need government permission for drone flying, the law says that I have to get the permission for that day and time I plan to fly 90 days in advance. What if the weather that day doesn’t permit me to fly?” asks Raisin George, a documentary maker and digital communications professional at a Bengaluru-based start-up who has been practising drone flying since March 2016.

Using his DJI Phantom 4 drone, the 31-year-old has made films on treks in the Himalayas, of a few monuments outside Bengaluru, and beaches like Kaup in Karnataka’s Udupi district. He even managed to convince the Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC)—after chasing them for six months—to make a documentary on Bengaluru buses. In March, the documentaryWhat Bengalureans Think About BMTC Buses won an honourable jury mention award at the Indian World Film Festival in Hyderabad. Now George regularly gets inquiries from prospective clients for aerial photography and videography, but the moment he tells them about the permissions required from DGCA, they say, “Okay, some other day.”


USM Students Expand Horizons through Study Abroad Opportunities

The idea of living and studying overseas might seem a bit too foreign for many college students. But at The University of Southern Mississippi study abroad remain a vibrant, popular option for students hoping to expand their academic and cultural horizons.

From the United Kingdom to Italy; from Peru to The Netherlands; from Belize to Austria, USM’s study abroad programs offer opportunities for travel and education in more than 10 countries. During the 2017-2018 academic year, approximately 275 students participated in the program, which includes course credit toward their respective degree plans.

The program is open to all students (freshmen-seniors) who meet the minimum requirements – typically at least a 2.0 GPA, with no disciplinary or academic probation issues. The time students spend abroad can vary from two weeks to an academic year, depending upon the course of study. Students also are required to obtain a valid passport.

Sarah Egerer, director of the USM Office of Study Abroad, says that the benefits gained by students who participate in the program are practically too numerous to count.

“Students have cited things like a change in world view, an increase in self-confidence, a deeper interest in global issues, and improvement in foreign language proficiency,” said Egerer.

She notes that the experience can also lead to professional rewards.

“In a survey of 400 executives, 78 percent said all students should gain intercultural skills,” said Egerer. “And many other skills employers look for in job applicants can be attained by studying abroad, such as appreciating and interacting with individuals different from yourself.”

Sawyer Walters, a senior criminal justice major from Hattiesburg, Miss., is currently studying with a large group as part of USM’s British Studies Program. His first impressions of life in Great Britain have been eye-opening and unforgettable.

“My study abroad experience is allowing me to see sights and learn history that I would otherwise not be able to enjoy,” he said. “It has pushed me as a student and as an American, and I’ve enjoyed every moment of it. I can’t wait to see how much more that there is to offer.”

Walters does concede one small drawback thus far. “Now, if only we can get them on the sweet tea train,” he mused.

Dr. David R. Davies, director of the USM School of Mass Communication and Journalism, has been involved with the British Studies Program for the past 20 years and has served as the program’s director since 2013. He points out that the program’s primary focus is “active learning.”

“Our students experience London first-hand by going on field trips that inform them about their academic subject. They also hear from expert British lecturers,” said Davies.

There are currently 110 students participating in the British Studies Program which runs from June 1 through July 12. Students take one of 10 courses in the following subjects: art, business, dance, children’s literature, gothic literature, history, music history, library science, journalism, and psychology.

Davies emphasizes that studying abroad makes students more confident in their abilities and enhances their independence.

“Studying in another country is also a great resumé builder, since employers are looking for students with the independence, drive, and specialized knowledge that international experience provides,” he said. “In today’s international economy, studying abroad gives students the skills they need to succeed.”

Ceili Rassier, is a junior from Hattiesburg, Miss., seeking a double major in international studies and political science. She lauds the study abroad program for creating an opportunity to live for an extended period of time outside her customary confines.

“Just within my first week I have learned so much about the culture and history of London thanks to Dr. (Andrew) Wiest’s class. And just within a week’s time, I have grown more confident in my own ability to adapt to new, exciting situations,” said Rassier.

According to Egerer, academic research has shown that compared to students who study exclusively on their home campuses, students who study abroad are 10 percent more likely to graduate in four years and 25 percent more likely to graduate in five years. Four-year graduation rates are nearly 18 percent higher for students who have studied abroad.

“Returning students are also contributing to the University’s internationalization,” she said. “They can contribute to class discussions in new ways, share their stories with others and become involved in international organizations on campus.”

Egerer notes that the Office of Study Abroad hopes to offer a summer internship program in Prague, Czech Republic next year with placements in multiple disciplines in English. New summer exchange programs in Budapest, Hungary and Galway, Ireland are under consideration as well.

Further, efforts are being made to reach students who have been traditionally underrepresented in study abroad, such as first-generation college students and racial and ethnic minority students.

Whether standing in the shadows of London’s Big Ben or gazing upon the Sistine Chapel in Rome, studying abroad exposes USM students to a world of wondrous possibilities.

As Rassier so succinctly summarizes, “Studying abroad offers numerous opportunities for students of all classifications to travel outside their comfort zones and blossom into more enlightened and confident individuals.”


An open letter to Chinese students in the US: dealing with stress

Stress in Chinese students

Dear Friend,

I have been worried about you since you mentioned that you felt stressed about getting good grades while you’ve been at university in America. I have been researching this issue because I will also be an international student next year.

For all international students, it is essential to deal with the stress from studying, otherwise we will be exhausted and will find it difficult to adapt to our new environment. It is just as important to enjoy your time at university than it is to achieve good grades.

In America, lots of experts have explored this issue and understood the importance of it. Wei-Chen Tung, professor of community and mental health from the University of Nevada-Reno, says in his research paper that stress among Chinese students is now a pressing issue and cannot be underestimated because there are more than 691,000 international students (in total) enrolling in America, and many of these experience high levels of stress.

You might wonder why international Chinese students suffer more stress than other students. The main reason is the sharp difference in culture.

Ohio State University has studied the cultural causes and has found that the differences between Chinese and American culture can be a barrier for students. If the stress cannot be dealt with, it impacts on our time and energy. Then, if we are always busy studying, it is difficult for us to socialise and blend in with our new culture.

Mei Fen Wei from the department of psychology of Iowa State University has stated that Chinese overseas students display “maladaptive perfectionism”, which means we always combine our self-worth with our grades. That is why Chinese overseas students always bury themselves in studying to try to get better grades.

However, in America top grades are not the only things you are expected to achieve. If you are tied to assignments, you will lose the chance to gain other skills to become more well-rounded.

In addition, we are expected to uphold the honour of our family, because our parents will often subconsciously make us feel as though us getting bad grades will let them down.

Wei also argues that Chinese culture “values emotional self-control,” which means Chinese students often try to solve their stress on their own instead of asking for help, which also aggravates their conditions. In conclusion, although the difficulties in language and different educational system also matter, the majority of our stress comes from the cultural differences.

After realising this, you may find that you are able to overcome some of these differences, by understanding the cultural values of the US. You don’t need to just have good grades to be an excellent student, but also good communication skills, strong extracurricular activities and work experience.

Because of this, I recommend that you try not to take grades so seriously and spend your time doing other productive things. The first thing I want you to learn is to take some time off and not spend your free time worrying about studying.

Then, you can accomplish your goals of studying abroad and enjoy your life at university. Yale Study Abroad says that studying abroad is about “exploring a particular culture or new region and immersing yourself in language study”. Explore your town and the surrounding area, make new friends, experience the culture and take in their behaviour, customs and values.

Additionally, learning about possible career paths is another important thing to do when you study abroad. You can also practice your communication skills and make contacts in the industry you plan to pursue.

What we need to do is be more curious about the cultural differences, communicate more and explore more of the new environment. I believe those things are the most valuable when studying abroad.


DMRC Recruitment 2018: Application invited for Dy. General Manager (Design) and Manager (Design) posts

DMRC Recruitment 2018: Application invited for Dy. General Manager (Design) and Manager (Design) posts

DMRC Recruitment 2018: Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) has issued notification to fill up various positions. The positions for which the applications are invited are Dy. General Manager (Design) and  Manager (Design). The last date for reaching the applications to the department concern for the recruitment to the post of Dy. General Manager (Design) and  Manager (Design) is June 26. Eligible candidates can apply for the positions on or before 26 June 2018. For details, candidates must visit delhimetrorail.com. All the information will be availabe on the website.
Applicants have to send the completed forms to the Chief General Manager (HR), Delhi Metro Rail Corporation Ltd, Metro Bhawan, Fire Brigade Lane, Barakhamba Road, New Delhi’.

DMRC Recruitment 2018: Vacancy Details:
There are 2 Dy. General Manager (Design) posts and  3 Manager (Design) posts.

Eligibility Criteria:
The applicants should hold B.E./  B.Tech (Civil)    (4  Years)  with minimum  60 percent marks or equivalent CGPA from a government recognised University/institute.M.Tech (Structural Enggineering) desirable.

Dy. General Manager (Design): The applicants must be employed with the Government Organisation /PSUs for a period of at least 9 years in related posts.

Manager (Design): The candidate must have 9 years experience with government Organisation/PSUs in related field.
Age limit: The candidate should not be more than 45 years of age.

Candidates must read the notification carefully before applying for the position, as any mistake can lead to the rejection of the form.

Selection process:
This is a three-stage process, first there will be interview and the sencond round is Group Discussion followed by Medical Examination. Details  of Medical Examination are available on DMRC website.

Selected  candidates for Dy. General Manager (Design) and Manager (Design) will have to execute a surety bond of Rs. 4,00,000 and Rs. 3,00,000, respectively. They will also have to bear the cost of training and applicable service tax to serve the corporation for a minimum period of three years.


South Suburban woman’s student loans snowball when lenders transfer loans without notice

Image result for South Suburban woman's student loans snowball when lenders transfer loans without notice

A south suburban woman is demanding answers from the Department of Education after her son’s student loans were transferred to different companies and snowballed out of control. She said she wasn’t getting the bills.

“I will be forever on the hamster wheel,” Sharon Mack said of paying off the loans.

Mack took out approximately $24,000 worth of loans for her son in 2009. Now the Palos Hills woman owes the Department of Education almost $38,000.

“Because all of the loans were being bought and sold by different lenders, I didn’t receive anything in the mail saying it was now bought and transferred,” she said.

Mack says she didn’t know the loans were transferred three times and that she didn’t receive bills. That’s when they snowballed with interest and late fees. When she defaulted, the loans transferred from the private servicer to a debt collector and then back to the Department of Education.

“They put me in default status, income tax check comes around and they seize the second check so then I call them and I say I am making my payments you are taking it out of my checking account every month,” Mack said.

Mack wants the Department of Education to put her in good standing and stop seizing her federal income tax checks. She provided the I-Team documentation showing monthly payments to the Department of Education, she says since April 2016.

“It’s taken a toll on us, we just want it to be fair and honest,” she said.

The Illinois Attorney General’s Office said it’s working with Mack to get answers from the federal agency. The office is also working with the last lender and the collection agency to help get Mack get back into good standing, since she now has a history of payments.

“I would not ruin my credit over a student loan. This has plummeted my credit,” Mack said.

The Department of Education said it’s looking into the I-Team’s questions about Mack’s case but had not responded to the I-Team as of Friday evening.

It’s legal for lenders to transfer student loans, but they must alert consumers if the servicer changes. Under a new state law written by the Illinois attorney general, they will have to alert consumers 15 days before the transfer instead of 45 days after.

“Not everyone has a college fund, you want your kids to go to college and have a good education and have a good life and you take out a loan and without your knowledge it keeps being bought and sold by different lenders,” Mack said.

Borrowers also have a responsibility to inquire if they’re strangely not seeing bills or debits from a lender.

That loan is not going to disappear – it’s most likely been transferred or sold.

Also, Illinois law says that student loan lenders must offer a lower payment option to borrowers in financial trouble.


From Layoff At Age 50 To A Career Change And Promotion Within Three Months

This past May, Melinda Chu started as Account Director at IW Group, a marketing agency focused on the Asian-American and multicultural demographics and part of the Interpublic Group of companies. Announcing a new Account Director would normally belong in a press release among advertising firms, but it lands in this career column because it is an unexpected, positive career story: Chu wasn’t in marketing prior to this role; she wasn’t at the Director level in her previous career; and she was unemployed at age 50 before landing this career change. Chu’s successful job search exemplifies several encouraging points for other job seekers:

  • You can bounce back from a layoff
  • You can land a job quickly
  • You can change careers at any age
  • You don’t need to take a pay cut or a step back to change careers

Up until March of this year, Chu was a paralegal at Time Inc for 18 years when she was among the hundreds laid off when Meredith acquired her employer. Longtime active in Asian-American causes, Melinda was on the Board with the Asian Women’s Giving Circle and was a volunteer administrator to the Asian Affinity Roundtable, a collective of employee resource groups serving Asian-American employees of ~60 companies, including Time Inc. She hoped to continue her volunteer work, while looking for her next role.

However, the Asian Affinity Roundtable was for current employees, so Chu figured she would have to step down from the group. She emailed her fellow administrators and offered to stay on. Not only was the group supportive, but several members offered to help Chu in her search. One member introduced Chu to his employer, IW Group, and less than three months from being laid off, Chu has started her new career as Account Director, a promotion and significant salary increase (despite unemployed job-seekers often getting lower job offers) from her previous role.

I networked my way into this job, but I didn’t know it at the time – Melinda Chu

Networking certainly played a pivotal role in Chu’s career change, and this is something all job seekers can do to help their search progress. Here are six more things you can swipe from Chu’s successful job search:

1 – Build your network before you need it

Chu was active in her community and in professional associations, so her network was varied and independent of her current employer. How can you get more involved outside of your immediate area?

2 – Stay active after a layoff

I know other job seekers who isolate themselves after a lay off. If you’re down and need to take some time off, absolutely do so, but you will get more help (and probably feel better) when you’re interacting with others. Chu stayed in touch with her professional groups after her layoff. Who can you reach out to during your job search?

3 – Focus on adding value

Chu did not email her list asking for help, but instead offered her help to the group. Being generous is the best way to demonstrate your value. How can you be helpful to your network?

4 – Start your career change before it’s official

Chu is passionate about working with the Asian-American community, which guided her volunteer and after-workday commitments. This made her a natural fit for the Account Director role, and now even her day job is focused on her interests. If your day job is not (yet!) focused on your passion, how can you incorporate these interests in other ways?

5 – Use your unique skills and expertise in your job search

Chu is a researcher by background and knows the Asian-American demographic from her outside commitments. She tapped her research skill and existing expertise during the long series of interviews. She didn’t just expect her warm introduction to carry her all the way to the offer. How can you bring your unique value to your job search? Are you practicing and preparing throughout the interview process?

6 – Negotiate based on the new role, not your old one

Too many job seekers look at their current salary, add a small amount on top, and use that as the anchor for their next salary negotiation. In the case of a career change, your old salary is not related to your new one, so you risk completing missing your market. Instead, Chu researched salaries for the new role and at the Director level and was confident enough to ask for a salary based on her new market. Do not assume you have to take a pay cut or a step back to change careers. Are you carrying assumptions from your old career to your new one? Have you researched the compensation and career path of your new target career?