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August 8th, 2010
10:41 PM ET

Changes Vowed After Allegations At For-Profit Colleges

Students applying to for-profit colleges are encountering high-pressured sales tactics and sometimes encouraged to lie about their finances, according to a report released by the Government Accountability Office on Wednesday. Undercover investigators allegedly found deceptive practices at all 15 for-profit schools they visited, including University Of Phoenix, Kaplan College and Everest College. The Career College Association represents more than half the campuses cited in the investigation. In an interview with CNN, Harris Miller, the head of the CCA, promises changes to the way these schools do business, but defends their validity as academic institutions.

Filed under: CNN Newsroom • Don Lemon
soundoff (7 Responses)
  1. Charlie Eppes

    I am shocked to hear of this, considering I attend Kaplan University Online. Encouraging students to lie about their finances? OH MY GOD!

    August 8, 2010 at 10:53 pm |
  2. Michael Turismosan Wilson

    I am completely blown away by the obviously corrupted recruiting tactics of some of the for-profit colleges. Especially when I heard Don Lemon metion Kaplans' name. I am a current student of Kaplan University (online) and my enrollment process was very informative and I was fully aware of what the financial ramifications of my enrollment were. I hope that Harris Miller conducts a thorough investigation and that the overall issue is resolved. It is disheartening to think that these institutions would put the value of the dollar ahead of the value of an education.

    August 9, 2010 at 12:42 am |
  3. Joan Hausman

    I know how young people are conned into enrolling in these "private
    schools" and have witnessed it first hand.
    They are not informed that the credits are not transferable and find out that the "diploma" is literally worthless.
    We had one of these "schools" in the lehigh valley, Pa and they closed after getting heat from the Pa. AG. There is another private school run by
    McCann that opened up recently and I know that they ignore informing students of non-transferable credits. I also read the fine print on screen for ITT and the Criminal Justice program , also non transferable.
    The best value is the local community college and legitimate tech schools.
    Heck, you wan to be a cop in my state go to a state accredited police academy, like I did!

    August 9, 2010 at 11:00 am |
  4. john

    It is crazy that the school puts so much pressure on their admissions advisors by threatening their jobs. People would rather take their chances breaking the rules than getting fired in a bad economy.

    August 9, 2010 at 11:04 pm |
  5. john

    I work for kaplan university and have seen many people do unethical things even the management. The whole problem stems from the directors of the organization and the way they set up the business. The turnover rate of employees is about 85%, which is why they do not uphold ethical behavior. When employees see so many other employees getting fired because they are not meeting their quotas, the others will feel the pressure and do what they have to do. The company is not willing to take responsibility for it, rather they blame the advisors.

    August 9, 2010 at 11:07 pm |
  6. Stephanie

    I attended Kaplan College in 2002-2004 when it was named Heritage College then and let me tell you a huge disappointment and money.I enrolled because I had been layed-off and I wanted to go back to school the 1st thing is when I applied for financial aid they said I made too much money the next year I applied for financial aid since I'm unemployed they said my $7,000 unemployment benefits was too much to qualify for a full grant.Which is not what I was told of course I tried to speak to the financial aid rep who initially told me this info of course she was no longer with the school.Kaplan School will lie and cheat you out of your money they have no internship programs unless you're a medical student.I was taking the paralegal degree course and I was very disappointed that there was no internship.Their idea of job placement after graduation is a joke all they have a bulletin board with jobs tacked on to it.Not that many jobs posted on the board.When I started applying for jobs and lawyers saw my degree they didnt even recognize this college as even being reputable.
    I was receiving letters saying I had to pay back the loan I had with the school for part of the tuition while I was still in school.The arrangement was 60 days after graduation you begin to pay back the loan and they were already trying to get money out of me I hadn't even graduated.This school charges in the upwards of $25,000 and they do nothing!I have graduated in 2004 and still haven't found a job in my field but yet I'm paying this loan back.It is not right and not fair to the students that are trying to make a better way for themselves and to be gouged by these what I call fake schools is not acceptable.
    When I seen this story in CNN I thought to myself"finally someone sees what's going on" in these tough times people are looking to improve their skills and go back to school to find a decent job and there are these schools ripping people off.I am pissed!

    August 10, 2010 at 3:41 pm |
  7. Lou

    Kaplan is not the only school using these unethical techniques. There are several Technical school in Florida whom are enrolling studnets who can't even speak english and wait until they complete the first two weeks in order to get paid fromthe goverment. Once the funds are receive, if the students complain they just drop the students, knowingly that they were not prepared for the education. These For profit institution are there for one thing only to generate "Profit". I have worked at these institution and 90% of these studnets that enrolled have no clue of what they are signing or what they are about to plunge themselves into.

    These schools are convenient if you want an education on the fasttrack but it would be only fair if the schools abide by the rules and regulations and assure that the student is ready and understands the process without enforcing any kind of pressure.

    August 10, 2010 at 6:37 pm |