College administration bribery scandal

missing

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The FBI called it the Operation Varsity Blues.

https://boston.cbslocal.com/2019/03...-college-admissions-scheme-yale-stanford-usc/

Nine college coaches face charges in the scheme, though schools and students have not been charged as co-conspirators.


“The coaches were allotted slots for athletic recruitment, the coaches worked with Singer, meaning they accepted bribes,” Lelling said. “Singer gave the coaches sufficiently impressive fake athletic credentials. The coaches used those athletic profiles to convince everyone else internally that this was a good recruit for the team, the person was admitted and the coach pocketed the bribe.”


Rudy Meredith, who was the Yale women’s soccer coach for 24 years, is accused of receiving $400,000 to accept a recruit despite knowing she did not play competitive soccer. Once the student was accepted to the school, her family paid $1.2 million.
 

ilovepaydays

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Wow. If you can afford to pay that much money, you should have known of better ways to use that money to help your child’s future. Just sayin’!
 
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alexikeguchi

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I subscribe to the NY Times and felt compelled to write a comment there on this disgusting outrage. I am an alumni interviewer for Yale and am used to seeing compelling candidates get rejected just because of the overwhelmingly competitive nature of elite college admissions, but this behavior is beyond the pale. I think even though the students were possibly unaware of the bribery and will not be charged, Yale should rescind the recent acceptances and expel current students admitted under these circumstances. There have to be dire consequences.
 

Aceon6

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I’m surprised this is news. This has been happening since the 50s. I guess the news is that some people stopped looking the other way.
 

judiz

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So what happened after a student, accepted on a fraudulent athletic admission shows up at school and doesn’t participate in the sport?
 

Vagabond

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clairecloutier

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I am totally not surprised at this scandal. As evidence continues to mount left and right that this country is turning into an oligarchy where inherited wealth, access, and privilege, including access to Ivy League colleges, gives people a huge leg up in life, the logical next step for people with money is to start bribing their way into the Ivies. If putting your kid through extensive tutoring and test prep classes doesn’t work, just throw money directly at the problem. :rolleyes:
 

skateycat

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It’s all pretty awful, but an angle I think is especially despicable, is that they arranged for fake disabilities for kids so they could have accommodations on standardized tests.

Can I tell you about all the hassle, and expense, and general extra effort that goes into supporting a kid with dysgraphia? And how hard it is already to get accommodations legitimately?

:mad::mad:
 

Winnipeg

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Call me naïve, but this does surprise me.

How does one make the grade upon acceptance if you can't legitimately make the grade to get accepted n the expected way? And, taking a spot away from a legitimate person is really bad.

What a way to start one's adult life - by cheating and showing poor character.
 

Jenny

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I am totally not surprised at this scandal. As evidence continues to mount left and right that this country is turning into an oligarchy where inherited wealth, access, and privilege, including access to Ivy League colleges, gives people a huge leg up in life, the logical next step for people with money is to start bribing their way into the Ivies. If putting your kid through extensive tutoring and test prep classes doesn’t work, just throw money directly at the problem. :rolleyes:
As some have already said though, is this really that new? Parents (and other relatives, and potentially people inside who really really want someone on their sports team who is otherwise unqualified for example?) doing whatever they can to get their kids into the best schools, whether it's outright bribes or making donations or pulling strings to get their application higher on list and using whatever alumni/legacy connections they have to make it happen?

Not to mention keeping their kids in those schools even if they don't have the marks or do have the bad behaviour that might otherwise prevent them from graduating?

And I imagine this happens all over the place - lesser colleges, top secondary and primary schools, even pre-schools no?

I wonder what entirely separate EVILLE things the target was suspected of doing.
Like say, how Trump and his kids got into A-list schools and managed to get degrees in the process? Just sayin'
 

Aceon6

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Flunking out of Harvard, or any other top tier school is a lot harder than getting in. .They might invite you to take a semester off, but when you come back, you can switch to a less taxing major with a lot of support. If you’re paying full boat, you have to quit as it’s unlikely they’ll fire you.

This does not apply to anyone with a lot of aid. You aid will go away if you dont maintain at least a certain GPA.
 

Susan1

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The first thing I thought of was that trump (I can't even say 45 anymore because that indicates he is the president!) will use this against democrats/Hollywood people.
 

Skittl1321

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Call me naïve, but this does surprise me.

How does one make the grade upon acceptance if you can't legitimately make the grade to get accepted n the expected way? And, taking a spot away from a legitimate person is really bad.

What a way to start one's adult life - by cheating and showing poor character.

Well, there is continued cheating. And as Aceon says, there is a lot of support.

But often, these students actually can make the grade. But a huge percentage of those rejected can. There just aren't enough spots for everyone who is capable.
 

Prancer

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Color me cynical, but I actually laughed when I read "There can be no separate college admission for wealthy,"

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news...ue-legacy-admissions-harvard-wealthier-whiter

http://theconversation.com/youre-no...ed-into-a-top-university-on-merit-alone-87985

https://www.businessinsider.com/acc...n-of-wealthy-amplifies-us-inequalities-2017-8

https://www.townandcountrymag.com/s...r/news/a8718/daniel-golden-college-admission/

https://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2...hat-problem/dC8NG2jViPGfgLWaB2wEZO/story.html

I could post so many links about this. These people may have taken it to an extreme--and they were unquestionably wrong to do so--but it's not like any of the Ivies are pure meritocracies that take only the best and brightest or that the playing field is ever even to begin with.
 

Debbie S

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As some have already said though, is this really that new?
Favoritism for children of wealthy alumni and wealthy potential donors has always existed. Many top colleges have something called a Parents Committee - parents of current students and alumni who make donations and fundraise for the school. There was an article in the NY Times some years ago (maybe early 2000s?) that talked about this practice in detail - current committee members would recruit/recommend potential future parent members, i.e. high net worth families with kids seeking admission to the school, and of course the kids would get in. And yes, colleges do give preference to legacies - children of alumni or siblings of current students or alumni, particularly if the alum is a donor. But the kid does have to be reasonably credible, otherwise they place him/her on the waiting list and call it a day. I remember a kid in my high school class whose father was a Princeton alum, he applied and there was much talk behind his back that it wouldn't be fair if he got in and [much smarter/more accomplished students who were applying] didn't. He got waitlisted.

It's often said the hardest aspect of Harvard (or any elite college) is getting in. It's unlikely anyone would flunk out as long as they are doing the work (if they don't turn in assignments or show up for class, that's another matter). Thousands of applicants are rejected from Ivies each year and nearly all of them are qualified to go there. Application fees are expensive and people don't apply to a college just for fun.

Re the current scandal....what I find most unbelievable is that coaches were accepting students as athletes who never played on the team and nobody seemed to notice. There should be some sort of verification, not just taking a coach at their word, if the athletic ability is the reason for the kid's acceptance.

Re the SAT cheating...sounds like the College Board is just as much at fault if their test administrators were bribed into allowing someone to violate their security procedures.

ETA:
At the end of the article:

Ten years ago elite universities were already so selective and gave preference to so many groups (legacies, development admits, athletes, underrepresented minorities, etc.) that candidates who didn't fit any of these categories faced steep odds. ..... Today the prospects for these unconnected applicants, who are predominantly middle-class whites and Asian-Americans, are even bleaker.
There are many factors that boost one's chances for Ivy League admission.
 
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hanca

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It’s all pretty awful, but an angle I think is especially despicable, is that they arranged for fake disabilities for kids so they could have accommodations on standardized tests.

Can I tell you about all the hassle, and expense, and general extra effort that goes into supporting a kid with dysgraphia? And how hard it is already to get accommodations legitimately?

:mad::mad:
A bit like fake medical conditions so that athletes can take medication that would be otherwise banned for their competitors (who didn’t have medical conditions and don’t fake them either)?
 

el henry

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I guess because it involves celebrities, this is news?

File it under the “no crap, Sherlock” for me.

My undergrad and law degree are from Ivies. Spousal unit’s BA and PhD are from Ivies. (The MA is from Oxford). My parents didn’t graduate high school; his father was career military. They didn’t take us for our money :lol:

Now granted it was a million gazillion years ago, but were folks at those schools who got in because mommy and daddy and granddaddy had money? well, hell to the yeah. Like poor pitiful working class me didn’t know that money provides like, access, even at 17? Uh, yeah.

The one thing I would say was that a million gazillion years ago you could, and did, flunk out. Based on grades. Just showing up and being your own sweet self would not get you through.:rolleyes:
They were only too willing to narrow down the premeds somehow :D

And in spousal unit’s 40 years at local large private university, he gave failing grades. To students who had not mastered the material. But showed up.

So that to me, would be news.....
 
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AxelAnnie

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But Lori Laughlin? Miss sweetness and purity?
The documents alleged that Loughlin and her husband, Giannulli, "agreed to pay bribes totaling $500,000 in exchange for having their two daughters designated as recruits to the USC crew team – despite the fact that they did not participate in crew – thereby facilitating their admission to USC."
I don't know why anyone is surprised. Buy a building, get your kid in. Endow a chair, get your kid in. I believe it has always been thus.
 

AxelAnnie

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I guess because it involves celebrities, this is news?

File it under the “no crap, Sherlock” for me.

My undergrad and law degree are from Ivies. Spousal unit’s BA and PhD are from Ivies. (The MA is from Oxford). My parents didn’t graduate high school; his father was career military. They didn’t take us for our money :lol:

Now granted it was a million gazillion years ago, but were folks at those schools who got in because mommy and daddy and granddaddy had money? well, hell to the yeah. Like poor pitiful working class me didn’t know that money provides like, access, even at 17? Uh, yeah.

The one thing I would say was that a million gazillion years ago you could, and did, flunk out. Based on grades. Just showing up and being your own sweet self would not get you through.:rolleyes:
They were only too willing to narrow down the premeds somehow :D

And in spousal until’s 40 years at local large private university, he gave failing grades. To students who had not mastered the material. But showed up.

So that to me, would be news.....
Shoot,,,,,,,,,,,,,,and a million gazillion years ago you did not get a trophy for turning up. And, if you misbehaved in school or did not master the material......(yes.....get ready.....elementary school) You could get left behind GASP. A world of logical consequences.
 

el henry

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Shoot,,,,,,,,,,,,,,and a million gazillion years ago you did not get a trophy for turning up. And, if you misbehaved in school or did not master the material......(yes.....get ready.....elementary school) You could get left behind GASP. A world of logical consequences.
No one can do the “I walked eight miles barefoot in the snow to school, uphill both ways” better than me, but I do think kids today for the most part understand consequences. :) there are goof offs in every generation

After all, a million gazillion years ago Richelle Rich got in because the Rich library, dining hall and rest stop were all on campus, right? ;) That wasn’t consequences, that was money:summer: but Richelle could fail if she didn’t find the right basket weaving classes.......
 

BaileyCatts

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I am shocked, SHOCKED I say, to think that Hollywood elite 1%ers would be bribing their kids way into college. :shuffle: Even when I was in high school I realized if you are mega rich Hollywood stars you will be able to buy your kids way into elite schools. I'm surprised this even made the news. That's just par for the course in college admissions for Hollywood stars kids as far as I'm concerned. :blah:
 

overedge

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I think the difference here is not that celebrities are involved, although that certainly is a news hook, but that there was explicit cheating for payment, as in the parents paying the agent $$$ for him to produce fake exam results or fake athletic credentials. It's sleazy for Mommy and Daddy Rich to make a big donation to their school of choice so their child has a better chance of getting in there, and it deprives a truly deserving and qualified student of a place, but AFAIK it isn't illegal.

There's also universities who look the other way *after* a student is admitted if their parents might give $$$ to the school:
https://www.chicagotribune.com/news/ct-xpm-2004-11-25-0411250302-story.html
 
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Yehudi

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I think why this is news is because it involved blatant fraud. The kids got admitted on the basis of performing in a sport at a high level and they didn’t even participate in that sport and it seems, they committed fraud during the exams by having others take the test for them.
 

overedge

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Shoot,,,,,,,,,,,,,,and a million gazillion years ago you did not get a trophy for turning up. And, if you misbehaved in school or did not master the material......(yes.....get ready.....elementary school) You could get left behind GASP. A world of logical consequences.
This has nothing to do with people making donations to schools with the expectation that their kid would get a leg up in a competitive admissions process.
 

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