College Admissions Scandal

Mike
tomcat said:
And why is anyone surprised?

Yes.  Every person's response to this should be 'duh'.


DaveSchmidt
flimbro said:
So what happens to current students who benefitted from this scam- expulsion? What about graduates? Do their degrees get voided?

Been looking but haven’t found any info. Since no students were charged, I’m guessing those who received degrees can keep them and those still enrolled and doing the work can continue.


DaveSchmidt

Right after posting, I saw this from Sports Illustrated:

Universities might also review whether to expel students who partook in the cheating scam. Based on the criminal complaint’s depiction, it appears that some students were not aware or were not fully aware of the cheating, while others were more active participants. Expect university academic rules and honor codes to come into play. For the currently enrolled students whose parents allegedly used bribes to get them admitted, they ought to become intimately familiar with their schools’ academic and honor code rules. They might also be advised to retain an attorney.

https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.si.com/college-football/2019/03/12/admissions-scandal-fbi-investigation-ncaa-violations-felicity-huffman-lori-loughlin-rick-singer


galileo

Listening to the live testimony today,the students are not guilty,the parents are. Most of the students were unaware of the whole procedure.


campbell29

universities use all sorts of data points to decide admits, so it would be pretty hard to prove who got in because their parents committed fraud.   At elite colleges there are so many factors, very few of which are objective unless there is a paper trail like this, it would be impossible to prove.


At schools with 10-15% admissions, there are thousands of applicants that are equally qualified, it would be hard to prove that your kid was given preferential treatment.   For athletes, it would be really easy to indict coaches who partipated because athletes leave a pretty good paper trail and coaches are pretty informed about which kids are elite and which are not,because they know who’s good and not because they watch the kids compete regularly.


Also , it makes no sense for parents to try to bribe coaches and AD’s because small spots=small scholarships and by the time they are elite athletes looking for scholarships, you have already paid twice that to get them to the point where recruiters would even look at them.


campbell29
campbell29 said:
universities use all sorts of data points to decide admits, so it would be pretty hard to prove who got in because their parents committed fraud.   At elite colleges there are so many factors, very few of which are onjective unless there is a paper trail like one for athletes, it would be impossible to prove.


At schools with 10-15% admissions, there are thousands of applicants that are equally qualified, it would be hard to prove that your kid was given preferential treatment.   For athletes, it would be really easy to indict coaches who partipated because athletes leave a pretty good paper trail and coaches are pretty informed about which kids are elite and which are not,because they know who’s good and not because they watch the kids compete regularly.


Also , it makes no sense for parents to try to bribe coaches and AD’s because small spots=small scholarships and by the time they are elite athletes looking for scholarships, you have already paid twice that to get them to the point where recruiters would even look at them.

 


yahooyahoo
DaveSchmidt said:


flimbro said:
So what happens to current students who benefitted from this scam- expulsion? What about graduates? Do their degrees get voided?
Been looking but haven’t found any info. Since no students were charged, I’m guessing those who received degrees can keep them and those still enrolled and doing the work can continue.

My guess is that some will withdraw from school pretty soon.  They will be harassed unmercifully.


DaveSchmidt
yahooyahoo said:

My guess is that some will withdraw from school pretty soon.  They will be harassed unmercifully.

I don’t know about the universities that have come up in these arrests, but everyone I knew at mine had too many other captivations to give a thought to harassing fellow students.


yahooyahoo
DaveSchmidt said:


yahooyahoo said:

My guess is that some will withdraw from school pretty soon.  They will be harassed unmercifully.
I don’t know about the universities that have come up in these arrests, but everyone I knew at mine had too many other captivations to give a thought to harassing fellow students.

This is the age of online bullying.


Mike
yahooyahoo said:
This is the age of online bullying.

 you're assuming that the prospective harassers pay attention to news. 


DaveSchmidt
campbell29 said:

Also , it makes no sense for parents to try to bribe coaches and AD’s because small spots=small scholarships and by the time they are elite athletes looking for scholarships, you have already paid twice that to get them to the point where recruiters would even look at them.

As yahooyahoo replied earlier, the students were not getting athletic scholarships. In addition to scholarships, coaches — especially in lower-profile sports that get little scholarship money — are generally allotted a number of spots for special admits. That is: spots for athletes who aren’t widely recruited but can fill out a team. In this case, coaches and ADs were allegedly bribed to tell the admissions office they wanted nonathletic students as special admits.


bub

When I see scandals like this, I always think "this isn't an isolated event but the tip of the iceberg."   If it happened once, it happened a 100 times.  A 1000 times.   It may be necessary to come down hard on the kids as well as the parents to serve as a deterrent.


j r
Red_Barchetta said:
 you're assuming that the prospective harassers pay attention to news. 

In the case of at least one student, who had enjoyed a lucrative career as an "influencer," public social media accounts were crammed full of harassing vitriol by yesterday afternoon. 


John

I wonder if this is how colleges produce fine citizens like Pharma Bro, Afluenza kid, Ivanka and on and on.


mrincredible
Formerlyjerseyjack said:
I wonder if this is how colleges produce fine citizens like Pharma Bro, Afluenza kid, Ivanka and on and on.

I'm not sure you can draw a direct line. But this is one more example of how wealthy people can use money to gain an unfair advantage in something which should be based on merit. Such a system will certainly engender feelings of entitlement in a young mind who has had all paths made straight and mountains laid low before them. 

It's a caricature of how unbalanced things can be overall in our society. I got unfair societal advantages simply by being born a white heterosexual male. Did that give me a disproportionate sense of my own merit? Maybe a little (hopefully just a little). I have to imagine if my parents were fabulously wealthy and could just buy my entrance into any college such a sense of superiority and entitlement would have been pretty high.

Especially if I could have just ****** off in school and focused my time on being an "influencer" instead of getting decent grades.


tjohn

There have always been "influencers".  As with so many things, the Internet has amplified existing human behavior.   Having said that, I find it kind of bizarre that people gaff about what some of these "influencers" say and wear.




cramer

I don't know if this has been mentioned in this thread: The parents who paid bribes to get their kids into colleges also got a tax write-off, since it was done through the consultant's purported charity, according to prosecutors. 

Query whether Kushner's father took a charitable deduction for the $2 million he gave to Harvard to get Jared in. This would be legal, as would any contributions made by parents to a college in order to get their kids in. 


sportsnut
cramer said:
I don't know if this has been mentioned in this thread: The parents who paid bribes to get their kids into colleges also got a tax write-off, since it was done through the consultant's purported charity, according to prosecutors. 
Query whether Kushner's father took a charitable deduction for the $2 million he gave to Harvard to get Jared in. This would be legal, as would any contributions made by parents to a college in order to get their kids in. 

They touched on this topic in the indictments - if you receive something of value in return for your contribution it is technically not deductible.  In the parts that I read it was noted that the receipt received by the some of the parents indicated that "no goods or services were exchanged" or something similar in return for the "contribution".  I would suspect the IRS will now be looking at these contributions.


kriss
sprout said:
In the example of Huffman's daughter, it seems likely her kid knew someone else would be taking the test. 
https://www.huffpost.com/entry/college-admissions-scam_n_5c87d1e7e4b0fbd7661e15fd

ETA: Now that I'm reading again, in two of these example SAT cases, the student appears to have accommodations, like extra time. In other words, they may have a learning disability. For some learning disabilities (such as dyslexia) SATs may result in low scores for students who could exhibit much higher abilities in other mediums. In other words -- I'm starting to see how this route may have felt justified in some cases. 

 What you're not seeing is that these kids did not have learning disabilities.  In order for the test taking scam to work, they NEEDED to be granted accommodations so that they could take the test one on one with a proctor who was in on the scam, and would either feed them answers during the exam, or fix them afterwards.  If you read the complaint (with a lot of the transcripts from tapped phones) you can see that Singer is telling the parents that the first thing they need to do is to get their kid's designated.  He recommended "friendly" psychologists or psychiatrists who would attest to the fact that the kid needed the accommodation.  These weren't previously classified students - these were kids whose parents dragged them to a doctor and paid $$$ to get them the special accommodation so that the fraud could proceed.  It's revolting, when you think about how hard families have to fight for resources and accommodations for their children who actually NEED them and these folks are just like, Oh, we need him/her to get a doctor's evaluation that says they have some sort of learning issue so we can they have someone else take their test? Yeah, no prob!

Here's the affidavit in support of the criminal complaint, if you can stomach it.

https://www.justice.gov/file/1142876/download


kriss
DaveSchmidt said:
As yahooyahoo replied earlier, the students were not getting athletic scholarships. In addition to scholarships, coaches — especially in lower-profile sports that get little scholarship money — are generally allotted a number of spots for special admits. That is: spots for athletes who aren’t widely recruited but can fill out a team. In this case, coaches and ADs were allegedly bribed to tell the admissions office they wanted nonathletic students as special admits.

 Exactly.  An athletic director at USC, for example, was one of the people working the scam.  Singer paid her bribes to put these kids (who were not athletes, and had their applications doctored to say they were, sometimes with the assistance of said athletic director) into the pool of athletes.  Like, every sport gets a number of admission spots they can use to admit almost anyone they want.  So the paid-off athletic director would use these fake-*** profiles to go to the crew coach and say, here's a great candidate for crew, can we give her one of your spots.  Here's all her credentials.  The coach counts on the athletic directors' word and says, ok.  Then the kid has a conditional acceptance as an athlete-scholar, and if that spot is reserved for the and nobody comes along and takes it away and gives it to another kid (and we've got the gate-keeper AD making sure that doesn't happen) then in March, the kid is admitted.  If you read the complaint (the affidavit in support of), you can see how the whole scheme worked - both the bribe to get in and the fraudulent test taking . It is truly entitlement and hubris at a spectacular level.

https://www.justice.gov/file/1142876/download


tjohn

It's all quite sad, really.  On the one hand, I want to law to crush the perps.  I actually believe in leadership by example and that white collar crime is more serious than a lot of street crime in terms of damage to society.

On the other hand, I find it terribly sad to see parents who don't start to know their own children's abilities somewhere in the K-12 years.  I find it terribly said to see parents who don't understand that there are many colleges that will open the world to any student willing to take advantage of the opportunities provided.  You hardly have to attend a top 100 college.


kriss
cubby said:
Isn't this what Jared's daddy did? Really, how is this any different?

 Well what Jared's father did didn't break the law.  As, Nancy, I believe, said above, everybody knows that little twerp can't find his own *** with a map and a sherpa - and everybody knows the only reason he's got into Harvard is because of the donation.  

This scam, these people were breaking the law, giving/taking bribes, doctoring test scores, promoting their kids as elite athletes when they weren't, taking away spots that _actual_ scholar-athletes could have taken.  

In any given year, who is pledging 2.5 million to Harvard?  I could see a scenario where maybe Jared's not taking someone else's spot, but maybe they're making room for one more rich db b/c his dad gave money.

In the current case, very limited athletic admission spots were taken up by fraudulent athletes. Not to mention, these kids have, on record, test scores that are not indicative of _their_ work.  And then there's the whole getting special accommodations to take the test, when you don't even qualify for them.  What's the backlash going to be there?  Kids who really need them are going to be denied going forward so we don't have a repeat?  I think when crap like this happens, the blowback tends to be scorched earth, and who's going to bear the brunt?  The kids of the 1%, who are always going to find a way to do what they need? Or everyone else, who never had the means nor the will to do something like this, who are going to be penalized b/c these ******** screwed up?

And again, legal.  Not legal.  Big distinction.  The morality/ethics of it we can debate another time, but the legality of one vs. the other is pretty clear cut. 



tjohn

The kids who were admitted on the pretense of being rowers should be made to row as a condition of remaining in school.  Rowing, along with swimming, is one of the sports I would recommend for people who want to look and actually be really fit.


j r

On CNN this morning, Asha Rangapaa made the interesting point that there are three categories of harm: Qualified applicants who were displaced by the cheaters; the universities, whose degrees have been devalued through association this scheme; and students in the future who, believing the system is hopelessly rigged, will be discouraged from ever applying to some of these schools.


tjohn
j_r said:
On CNN this morning, Asha Rangapaa made the interesting point that there are three categories of harm: Qualified applicants who were displaced by the cheaters; the universities, whose degrees have been devalued through association this scheme; and students in the future who, believing the system is hopelessly rigged, will be discouraged from ever applying to some of these schools.

 Cool.  Does that mean that the perps could be sued for damages?


Mike
j_r said:
On CNN this morning, Asha Rangapaa made the interesting point that there are three categories of harm: Qualified applicants who were displaced by the cheaters; the universities, whose degrees have been devalued through association this scheme; and students in the future who, believing the system is hopelessly rigged, will be discouraged from ever applying to some of these schools.

 

I think we're all riled up over this because it's a chance for the 99% to stick it to the 1% for the entitlement they act on every day.  The three harms posted by j-r / CNN are really only harms on paper.  With the exception of the tax deduction possibility, I'm not really sure why any of this is crime.  Throughout history certain people have been able to cut the line in doctor's offices, get better seats at restaurants or shows, get out of traffic violations, get hired to positions for which they are unqualified, ... Do we really expect this to change?  

Surely a university can expel a student or fire an employee they discover involved in such practice,  but why does the average taxpayer have a grudge against either of them?  Why is university admission different than any other facet of life?  Is it about public vs private schools?

 


Mike
tjohn said:


j_r said:
On CNN this morning, Asha Rangapaa made the interesting point that there are three categories of harm: Qualified applicants who were displaced by the cheaters; the universities, whose degrees have been devalued through association this scheme; and students in the future who, believing the system is hopelessly rigged, will be discouraged from ever applying to some of these schools.
 Cool.  Does that mean that the perps could be sued for damages?

 How can any of that be quantified?


tjohn
Red_Barchetta said:


tjohn said:

j_r said:
On CNN this morning, Asha Rangapaa made the interesting point that there are three categories of harm: Qualified applicants who were displaced by the cheaters; the universities, whose degrees have been devalued through association this scheme; and students in the future who, believing the system is hopelessly rigged, will be discouraged from ever applying to some of these schools.
 Cool.  Does that mean that the perps could be sued for damages?
 How can any of that be quantified?

 Beats me.  Somehow lawyers have been able to sue claiming at affirmative action harmed their clients.  I suppose similar logic would apply.


Stanley

A very rich person might do better by their child by setting him/her up in a business rather than sending him/her to College at all.


conandrob240

if a rich kid were going to wind up in a family business or with preferential career placement anyway, what difference did it really make where they went to school?



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