ANY STUDENT who has the desire and gumption to take on a low-paying public service job after graduation should be able to do so, regardless of his or her indebtedness. And Harvard should not shirk its responsibility to encourage public-spiritedness in its students. But that doesn't mean the College should be paying for or subsidizing work and services that it is the responsibility of government--local, state and federal--to provide.
The federal government subsidizes most undergraduate loans to begin with. Who better, then, to alleviate the debt burdens of students who are understandably wary of acting on their generous impulse to teach, counsel, feed, entertain or just plain help society's less fortunate members?