It is pretty simple. These 'universities' sell worthless degrees and the 'graduates' get jobs in proportion to their degrees (e.g., most get very low pay). The graduates, with big loans and tiny pay checks, end up defaulting on their loans in high numbers. The 'for profit' universities made the investors happy by taking money from students in exchange for as little as possible. But like any scam artists, they have a really nice story that is bound to work some of the time. The students pay up front for delayed gratification. It just happens that the gratification is delayed for ever. If the universities were forced to 'invest' in the education for a piece of the eventual increase in pay, they would be incented to deliver real education so they could share in the increased value of the student's labor. But they can make more, at least in the short run, by playing this con game.