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posted by LaminatorX on Wednesday June 25 2014, @01:39AM   Printer-friendly
from the alma-emptor dept.

Corinthian Colleges, with about 75,000 students in the US and Canada as well as online classes, owns 3 for-profit higher education brands: Everest College, Heald College, and WyoTech schools.
Corinthian receives $1.4B a year from federal education financing programs ($4 out of every $5 of its income).
Late last week, the company appeared headed for permanent closure, but an agreement reached Monday with DoE will allow it to stay in business with Federal oversight.

The US Department of Education has limited its access to federal funds after it failed to provide documents and other information to the agency.
That follows allegations that the company altered grades, student attendance records and falsified job-placement data used in advertisements for its schools.
[...]
The Education Department said that it heightened its oversight of the company after requesting data "multiple times" over the past five months

The company, based in Santa Ana, California, has previously been sued by California Attorney General Kamala Harris

for marketing fraud, arguing that the company mislead prospective students about how its graduates fared in the job market.

Worse, Everest officials paid nearby companies to hire their graduates for just long enough to make the school's statistics look better, then let them go. One Everest campus in Georgia paid companies $2,000 a head to keep Everest graduates on staff for 30 days.
[...]
the company will reportedly get the bridge funding it needs long enough to act on several DOE requests, including closing some of its schools and bringing in an independent auditor for its remaining operations. The DOE is weighing whether or not to reauthorize several Corinthian-owned schools for participation in the federal financial aid system, according to the Associated Press. The company will attempt to sell off significant parts of its 107-campus network.

 
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  • (Score: 2) by VLM on Wednesday June 25 2014, @11:35AM

    by VLM (445) on Wednesday June 25 2014, @11:35AM (#59791)

    "what was this company doing wrong?"

    Its a problem of magnitude not direction.

    They tell the same lies all higher ed institutions tell, but they went a little overboard compared to other higher ed institutions.

    The .biz model Everest uses is advertise heavily on lower class TV (judge judy, that type of thing) promising the world (easy classes, high paying jobs in the game design field, etc) then open a campus in a diverse (poor) neighborhood, sign up students for as many loans as the .gov will allow at the absolute maximum amount allowed, then close. Almost none of the kids will get a job in the field, of course. A stereotypical example would be the Milwaukee experience.

    Its strongly implied by society if you go to ... UW Madison ... and get an education degree, you'll automagically end up in a $100K/yr public school job. And if they had over the top TV commercials like Everest they'd probably be in the same legal trouble. Reality is most ed grads end up waitresses, real estate agents, bartenders, etc, very few indeed end up spending a significant length of their career as "wealthy public school teachers" or as teachers of any sort (note no one ever says the phrase, "wealthy catholic school teachers" LOL as my sister in law ended up well under minimum wage working there before getting her big break into pub schools after a decade or so).

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  • (Score: 1) by SecurityGuy on Wednesday June 25 2014, @04:32PM

    by SecurityGuy (1453) on Wednesday June 25 2014, @04:32PM (#59948)

    They tell the same lies all higher ed institutions tell, but they went a little overboard compared to other higher ed institutions.

    Nah, if they're really paying companies to hire their grads for 30 days in order to boost their stats, they're engaging in blatant fraud and people should be in jail for it. When I went to university, stats were readily available for % of students with an offer by graduation, or 3 months after, I forget, and average salary. I graduated and made 20% over the average they quoted. Maybe things have changed in the last ~15 years, but real data wasn't at all hard to come by when I looked for it. The difference is that these guys are being accused of fraudulently manipulating the data.

    • (Score: 2) by VLM on Wednesday June 25 2014, @05:53PM

      by VLM (445) on Wednesday June 25 2014, @05:53PM (#59988)

      Eh, one mans "blatant fraud" is anothers advertising. I am told this is now BAU at most law schools, to boost rankings. Harvard Law will take care of itself, I'm talking about the less prestigious places.

      Sometimes I wonder about that and how manipulated it is. I'm sure when I finally graduated night school with my BSCS they were thrilled to add the salary of a highly paid 30-something experienced programmer to their new grads stats, that doesn't mean some 22 yr old kid who can barely compile helloworld.cpp with googles help would have any relationship to the warped salary average.