Dallas, TX (Law Firm Newswire) January 27, 2011 – An investigation recently found that for-profit colleges, also called proprietary colleges, are devising scrupulous recruiting practices that target single parents and low-income wage earners. These colleges then rake in federal funding by inflating their tuition costs to receive Federal Student Aid and Pell Grants.
For-profit colleges’ are growing rapidly because two-year community colleges are becoming more and more over-crowded. The National Association of College Admission Counseling issued a Higher Education Act Fraud Alert through reports that were made by Government Accountability Office.
GOA’s investigation found that at 15 of the schools they investigated, for-profit college recruiters inflated the numbers that potential students could be earning after graduation, what ere found to be exaggerated, unrealistic potential salaries. They also found that a typical for-profit massage therapy certificate tuition was $14,000, as opposed to a mere $520 at a community college, according to their investigation.
Not only that, some were also encouraging the undercover officers to falsify their financial aid forms. By doing so, these for-profit colleges are attracting students who would not otherwise qualify for a private loan, increasing the amount of federal money the school receives.
“If you think that you have been defrauded by a for-profit school by misrepresented facts and accreditation status, seek legal counsel,” said Ty Gomez of Gomez Law Group of Dallas. “At Gomez Law Group, we are helping students fight back.”
Undercover agents found not only defrauding and other unscrupulous practices, but also aggressive marketing tactics.
Recruiters were found to pressure student to sign enrollment contracts even before speaking to a financial aid advisor and often confusing them about the true cost of their programs. As soon as some of the GOA officers registered an online application, no later than five minutes after did they begin to receive phone calls that bombarded them all into the day and night by the for-profit colleges.
GOA presented their findings to a Senate Education Committee in August and heard from witnesses that said they were harassed from relentless phone solicitation from these for-profit colleges.
It is believed that the federal funds that the for-profit colleges receive are used for aggressive marketing strategies. It has also been revealed that sometimes the college credits earned from these for-profit schools are not transferable and not even recognized under the national Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools because many schools disregard this rating and will not recognize the credits received from these for-profit schools.
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