The rising costs of college and the student loan industry that fuels it has been the subject of much debate and deliberation recently.

President Barack Obama recently embarked on a two-day "college affordability bus tour," where he laid out his three step plan to "connect financial aid to school performance, support academic innovation and competition, and make college affordable," aimed to help ensure college is available to all young Americans.

Over the last decade, the amount of student loans outstanding has quadrupled, even in the face of student loan reform through the 2010 Student and Fiscal Responsibility Act. This seemingly out-of-control industry impacts student, private lenders, and taxpayers!

Patrick Morris owns shares of Bank of America and Discover Financial Services. The Motley Fool recommends Bank of America and Wells Fargo. The Motley Fool owns shares of Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase, and Wells Fargo. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days.

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