Actors and other rich folks charged in scheme to defraud colleges by faking test scores and school accomplishments

Bedridden as I am, and unable to brain, all I can do is pass the news onto you (see CNN here and here and the New York Times for the details).   But I do know the two most well known people among those just charged and arrested, since I used to watch television in the days when they were famous.

These are the two actors Felicity Huffman, who was in “Desperate Housewives” and Lori Lauglin, from “Full House”. They joined 31 other rich folk, including executives and magnates of all stripes in faking SAT scores and athletic records of student applicants for positions in prestigious colleges. Others charged were school administrators and coaches who were bribed to create the faked records. The cheating parents, whose kids were unaware of the scheme, paid about $400,000 to $600,000 in fees and bribes, but one hapless parent paid $6 million! Both Huffman and Loughlin were charged with  felony conspiracy to commit mail fraud and “honest services mail fraud”, both felonies.

The pdf of the indictment is here, and given the breadth of the case, the Justice Department itself has released a chart with the names and crimes of those charged. I don’t recognize any of the other names, but the ringleaders face other and more serious charges, including obstruction of justice, racketeering, and conspiracy to commit money laundering.

As the New York Times reports:

The case unveiled Tuesday was stunning in its breadth and audacity. It was the Justice Department’s largest ever education prosecution, a sprawling investigation that involved 200 agents nationwide and resulted in the arrests of 50 people in six states.

The charges also underscored how important college has become as a primary determinate of prosperity and success in America, at the same time that admissions have become more competitive and cutthroat. The authorities say the parents of some of the nation’s wealthiest and most privileged students bribed and cheated to secure spots for their children at top universities, not only cheating the system, but potentially cheating other hard-working students out of a chance at a college education.

“The parents are the prime movers of this fraud,” Andrew E. Lelling, the United States attorney for the District of Massachusetts, said Tuesday during a news conference. Mr. Lelling said that those parents used their wealth to create a separate and unfair admissions process for their children.

But, Mr. Lelling said, “there will not be a separate criminal justice system” for them.

The other details are available at the site, and it looks grim given that there are incriminating phone recordings, including from both actors.

85 Comments

  1. GBJames
    Posted March 12, 2019 at 12:31 pm | Permalink

    The cynic in me suspects that these folk will suffer less from the justice system than your average drug offender.

    • Posted March 12, 2019 at 12:37 pm | Permalink

      Thinking back on the “affluenza” kid, I tend to agree with you. I imagine they’ll buy lighter sentences somehow.

    • Dragon
      Posted March 12, 2019 at 12:50 pm | Permalink

      The cynic in me suspects the teachers and coaches who were bribed will get more time than the rich people.

      • Ken Kukec
        Posted March 12, 2019 at 1:06 pm | Permalink

        They’ll deserve it, too. They occupied and abused positions of trust and were presumably motivated purely by greed. However despicable their acts in this case, the parents were presumably motivated by a desire to help their children.

        • Dragon
          Posted March 12, 2019 at 1:24 pm | Permalink

          I had hoped, but did not expect, the parents and teachers/coaches to get similar sentences and the ringleaders to get considerably more.
          But you make a great point. Thank you.

      • Posted March 12, 2019 at 2:43 pm | Permalink

        As a university teacher, I agree with Ken: They should!

      • JohnE
        Posted March 12, 2019 at 9:51 pm | Permalink

        I would normally share your pessimism, but remember that this entire case is about rich people buying favoritism. The judges in these cases are going to be under enormous public pressure not to let these people buy favoritism all over again in connection with their criminal prosecutions.

        OK, I know what you’re thinking — “But what about Manafort.” (Sigh.)

    • Starr
      Posted March 12, 2019 at 2:27 pm | Permalink

      I don’t know. This is essentially rich people defrauding rich people (or rich institutions in this case). If there is one thing that can get a rich person locked up, it is messing with other rich people.

    • Posted March 12, 2019 at 2:42 pm | Permalink

      Still it will be big progress if they suffer, because such schemes have likely been going on for decades and no one of the crooks has suffered.

  2. Nicholas K.
    Posted March 12, 2019 at 12:33 pm | Permalink

    Trying to understand my feelings at having slaved and worked my own way through college and grad school to achieve my life goal of lecturing to these privileged morons and legacy students.

  3. Posted March 12, 2019 at 12:43 pm | Permalink

    Wow it’s about damn time that that these rich people realize that they’re not above the law. This is very upsetting to me an my family because we weren’t able to send our children to college because we didn’t have the funds for them to attend. But for these freakin rich people to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars to have their poor little rich kids to attend an elite college is so freakin disgusting. If they would have been real parents then they wouldn’t be finding themselves in this position. But instead of being parents an making sure that they’re children were studying an doing their homework they were out partying an living life an leaving their children in the care of their nannies or housekeepers. So in other words I hope an pray that they get exactly what they deserve including prison time because they cheated several an I mean several children from attending college because they didn’t want to look bad to their families friends an the media . So since they have thousands of dollars to bribe colleges then they should be made to pay for other children that weren’t able to attend because of them because I’m sure they’re are plenty of young people who would love to attend college but aren’t able too because they don’t have the money to get in

    • Posted March 12, 2019 at 1:25 pm | Permalink

      They better all do time.

    • Posted March 12, 2019 at 1:30 pm | Permalink

      While it’s true the parents could have spent more time and resources to improve their kid’s and other kid’s chances of getting in, this does not imply the kids were not without some merits that distinguish them.

      It is intensely stressful for parents to have their kids apply to colleges and chances that any kid gets in is very small, almost random, when recognizing patterns of acceptance.

      For most of the top schools, not being able to afford the school is not usually a reason why they do not get in. Recent endowments provide a significant fraction of kids unrestricted financial aid.

      I do not pray (I don’t pray at all) that the parents serve prison, but I hope they turn their lives around so their kids have a chance not to repeat the suffocating entitlement which appears to afflict many wealthy people in this country.

      • Mark Perew
        Posted March 12, 2019 at 6:19 pm | Permalink

        Apparently the lady from Full House has not yet been apprehended. The police are saying that they wish that they had Jesse’s girl.

  4. Posted March 12, 2019 at 12:43 pm | Permalink

    If something is capable of being corrupted, it will be.

  5. Nicholas K.
    Posted March 12, 2019 at 12:47 pm | Permalink

    Any University Admissions staff involved in this must really be held to account.

    • Filippo
      Posted March 12, 2019 at 4:38 pm | Permalink

      I wonder if university ethics codes generally require admissions staff to report bribery attempts. If not, surely they will now. (Or not?)

      • Posted March 13, 2019 at 12:06 pm | Permalink

        One of my professors in graduate school at UBC told the story of receiving a bribe submitted in an exam booklet. I got the impression *that* had to be reported. So I suspect other people would have to; though that might be a loop hole in policy for all I know.

  6. Randall Schenck
    Posted March 12, 2019 at 12:50 pm | Permalink

    My reaction concerning these schools is – just how poor is the oversight at these institutions. You would think this is part of the Trump administration.

    In some cases fake layouts were presented to get the kid into the school with photo shopped pictures doing whatever sport that a bribed coach was working. Sometimes they had others take the SAT tests or sometimes manipulate the score after the fact. Where is the NCAA in all this corruption? And what the hell is the school administration doing that allows this to go on since 2011 at UCLA and Yale and Sanford. Parents paid from $200,000 up to over $6 million to get their kids into this fraud. The guy running the plan did over $15 million and 40 to 50 kids who had no business being there, got in.

    • W,Benson
      Posted March 12, 2019 at 2:10 pm | Permalink

      . . . and 40 to 50 deserving kids were kept out.

      • harrync
        Posted March 13, 2019 at 3:14 pm | Permalink

        Depends on your definition of “deserving”. Remember, those 40-50 “deserving” true athletes were all going to displace a more qualified non-athlete. If you were one of the 40-50 kids bumped by the athlete preference, does it really make any difference to you whether you were bumped by a real athlete or a fake one?

    • Posted March 12, 2019 at 2:51 pm | Permalink

      I don’t think it has started under Trump, or even under Obama. The schemes are elaborated, so I suppose much longer history.

      • Mark R.
        Posted March 12, 2019 at 4:23 pm | Permalink

        Randall was just comparing, since this is so corrupt and involves wealthy folk…you would think they were a part of Trump’s administration, but he knows it isn’t connected.

    • eric
      Posted March 12, 2019 at 7:31 pm | Permalink

      …just how poor is the oversight at these institutions.

      Even before this, I think a lot of people thought sports coaches were given way too much deference and power. Hopefully (ok, I can dream can’t I?) this will put pressure on schools to take a better look at just what the heck these coaches are allowed to get away with.

  7. Kevin Meredith
    Posted March 12, 2019 at 12:55 pm | Permalink

    This needs to be called what it is — affirmative action. But instead of historically disadvantaged kids who get a small hand up but who still must meet high standards, this is rich kids who get a huge hand up and meet no standards.

    Imagine a time in America when every child of the wealthy is looked at with the same suspicion that well-educated minorities are looked at today. Parents like this make that day more likely.

    • Posted March 12, 2019 at 1:06 pm | Permalink

      We do not necessarily know that the kids did not meet standards.

      I’ve been interviewing kids for years (for one of the schools implicated) and many of the kids deserve to go to these types of schools. Acceptance is about 4%.

      The kids are likely less to blame than their parents and school officials.

      • enl
        Posted March 12, 2019 at 8:04 pm | Permalink

        4% acceptance is not a meaningful measure, despite the popularity of that as *THE* measure.

        I presently teach pre-university engineering (my students bring 1 to 3 semesters of AP credit) as the day job, and when I hear `my child applied to Harvard’, all I can say is `my dog can apply to Harvard, and has as good a chance to get in’.

        Compare the `top’ competitive schools to other schools with comparable programs (first and second tier), and the data doesn’t show a significant difference a few years after graduation.

        I am a product of the prestigious institutions, and I know that the cabinet of curiosities some of these schools cultivate is little more than statistical variation, tainted by financial privilege. (I will refrain from mentioning specific names and incidents, but I can say that there are at least a few elected representatives of the people that are not in prison solely due to the financial backing of the familial unit, and I am confident that there are many more than I know of).

        It was no secret 40 years ago how many of my compatriots got in, so why is it a surprise now?

      • Posted March 13, 2019 at 12:09 pm | Permalink

        True – there are programs where the standard is also relative to the pool. McGill says this about their MD program, for example: something like A- average in principle is enough but in practice more since there are fixed places and so they have to set a higher bar.

    • Nicholas K.
      Posted March 12, 2019 at 1:08 pm | Permalink

      I disagree — this is quite different from affirmative action. This is deliberate fraud and bribery.

      Coming from a background of historical disadvantage is not a crime. This is.

      • Kevin Meredith
        Posted March 12, 2019 at 1:44 pm | Permalink

        I should have used a different term, didn’t mean to disparage affirmative action, was trying to disparage those who do.

    • Posted March 12, 2019 at 2:55 pm | Permalink

      Many people, including me, view the children of the wealthy and the privileged with suspicion. First in my country, then in others as well. A moment of realization was watching Bush Jr.

      • Filippo
        Posted March 12, 2019 at 4:43 pm | Permalink

        Yes, a legacy graduate of Yale, and a graduate of Harvard Business School.

  8. DrBrydon
    Posted March 12, 2019 at 1:09 pm | Permalink

    Comment on this story from another site: “Who do they think they are, the NCAA?”

  9. Posted March 12, 2019 at 1:12 pm | Permalink

    You’d think they could just give a big donation and preferential treatment? Like $6M???

    • Randall Schenck
      Posted March 12, 2019 at 1:30 pm | Permalink

      Yes, usually the really rich just build a building or a wing on the place and the kid gets in. But here you have one crook who creates a company, a non profit type charity and hangs out a shingle. The rich parents call him and he works out a plan customized for their kid. He takes their money and makes deals with corrupt coaches and others in the system. Everyone wins except the kid who did not get to go to school because the rich one took his or her place. All you need is people who take bribes and risk prison and heck, that is almost everyone. This is the kind of thing Micheal Cohen did for Trump for 10 years or so. Paul Manafort did more before breakfast on a Saturday morning. Just don’t get caught.

      The FBI and Justice have been working this college thing for more than a year and this morning they dropped the hammer. More than two hundred feds swooped in and arrested everyone. It’s like another weekend in the Trump firm.

    • eric
      Posted March 12, 2019 at 7:33 pm | Permalink

      Yeah no kidding. If you’re going to blow $6 mil, just buy the University a building and get your kid in that way. That’s also a form of corruption (IMO), but it’s legal and above board.

      Methinks that part of the reason for the parents going this route rather than hiring tutors etc. is that they didn’t want their kids to know that mommy and daddy had no confidence in them.

  10. merilee
    Posted March 12, 2019 at 1:22 pm | Permalink

    Disgraceful! As a Stanford alum I’m disgusted by all involved😖

  11. Posted March 12, 2019 at 1:28 pm | Permalink

    I know of cases back in the sixties where unqualified students got into major private universities by their parents making six figures or more contributions directly to the universities. I don’t know if that is possible now but it happened back then.
    As an example, Trump was not qualified to get into Wharton. He was admitted as a favor by an admissions officer to Ttump’s father. Don’t know if their was a cash payment but likely that the favor was repaid somehow. Or maybe he just liked Trump’s father.

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted March 12, 2019 at 2:20 pm | Permalink

      Trump’s son-in-law and chief White House policy advisor, Jared Kushner, was admitted to Harvard shortly after his father made a $2.5 million (tax deductible) donation to the school.

      Trump spent is “Birther” years casting animadversions about Barack Obama’s having been unqualified to attend Columbia and Harvard Law (even though Obama had graduated magna cum laude from the latter and had served as editor of its law review). Trump even purported to offer a $5 million reward for the release of Obama’s academic records. At the very same time, Trump was having his “fixer,” Michael Cohen, write letters to Wharton and Fordham (where Trump spent his first two undergraduate years) and his private military high-school and the SAT boards threatening them never to release his records.

      A paragon of character and consistency, that fella.

      • Posted March 12, 2019 at 3:00 pm | Permalink

        With this academic record of his own, Trump would better keep his mouth shut about other people’s records.

      • Randall Schenck
        Posted March 12, 2019 at 3:05 pm | Permalink

        Yes and Trump should be far more concerned about his taxes than his grades no one cares about. All know he didn’t pay his taxes but it is more to find where the money comes from than how he screwed the taxes out. Just because the bank is German does not mean the money is not Russian. Uncovered criminal conduct is far more important than impeachment.

        Speaking of taxes, it is about that time.

        • Ken Kukec
          Posted March 12, 2019 at 3:40 pm | Permalink

          Deutsche Bank — one of the few that would lend Trump money after he stiffed US banks in the bankruptcy following his Atlantic City casino bust-out — has been fined $630 million for laundering over $10 billion in dirty money from Russian oligarchs, and that’s rumored to be just a drop in the bucket of all the filthy Russian lucre it’s washed.

          You do the math.

        • Mark R.
          Posted March 12, 2019 at 4:32 pm | Permalink

          I’ve been hearing/reading some reports (not on MSM) that the majority of Americans are going to get stiffed this year. I always extend, so don’t know what my 2018 taxes will be until October. But refunds aren’t going to be what people expect. Maybe the only thing that could shake the cult would be a big bite out of their pocket books. Then again, the cult members will undoubtedly blame Democrats (esp. if Trump tweets it, which I’m sure he will).

      • infiniteimprobabilit
        Posted March 12, 2019 at 7:18 pm | Permalink

        “Trump was having his “fixer,” Michael Cohen, write letters to Wharton and Fordham (where Trump spent his first two undergraduate years) and his private military high-school and the SAT boards threatening them never to release his records.”

        Coming soon on Wikileaks? We can only hope…

        cr

    • Posted March 12, 2019 at 5:48 pm | Permalink

      Darwinwins’ Law. As an internet discussion grows longer, the probability of a comparison to Trump approaches 1.

      • infiniteimprobabilit
        Posted March 12, 2019 at 7:20 pm | Permalink

        😎

        cr

  12. Steve Pollard
    Posted March 12, 2019 at 1:42 pm | Permalink

    Pretty disgraceful. But if money can buy these things, then some people will find the money to buy them.

    Much more importantly, thanks for taking the trouble to post this from your sickbed, Jerry, and get well soon.

  13. W.Benson
    Posted March 12, 2019 at 2:04 pm | Permalink

    Many, many athletic coaches on the cheater list but no scientists. Just an observation to make of as one may.

    • Gabrielle
      Posted March 12, 2019 at 2:39 pm | Permalink

      Athletic coaches were targeted because a small percentage of freshman slots are set aside for recruited student athletes, for the coaches to select.

      No such freshman slots are set aside for students who are academically gifted in the sciences. If such slots existed, science professors would have been approached.

      • Posted March 12, 2019 at 2:46 pm | Permalink

        These types of universities get high level students for sciences without doing a thing. Its, historically, harder to find talented athletes who are also as competitive academically, therein lies the motivation for these colleges to have ‘slots’.

        • Posted March 12, 2019 at 3:41 pm | Permalink

          My opinion is that those slots should not be allowed. College sports should be for academically qualified students.

        • Posted March 12, 2019 at 3:42 pm | Permalink

          Well, why does a university need talented athletes in the first place? (Unless it is a sport academy.)

          Reading the report, I thought that it matters little whether the rich kids were real athletes or passed as such: in both cases, they were preferred to more deserving young people.

          I think it would be best if the universities selected the candidates with best academic performance by anonymous exams. No slots for athletes, no legacy admissions, no affirmative action, and no efforts to select “well-rounded” students that look very much like forcing youths to work for free.

          • Posted March 12, 2019 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

            Like Steven Weinberg, I think football should go, but without affirmative action, college admissions would hardly come close to representing a diverse population.

            Athletes take about 2% financial aid, and account for typically less than 5% of the student population and about 99% of all athletes who graduate will not make a career from athletics but from the skills they collect from an education.

            Without athletics, the alternative for thousands of students in America would be not to go to college at all.

            • Posted March 12, 2019 at 4:57 pm | Permalink

              The same number would go to college, it would just be different students, the more qualified academically, the way it should be. Now thousands of more gifted students are not getting to go.

              • Posted March 12, 2019 at 5:57 pm | Permalink

                Places like Stanford, Princeton and Notre Dame admit athletes who are far superior, on average, academically, than many other universities. They may, on average, be inferior, to their counterparts.

                The application pool is a fixed number. All those who are genuinely qualified for Harvard should be qualified for Stanford or Williams etc. Any academically interested student will find a place to study. Take athletics away and many persons from our society will simply elect not to go to school, which is not necessarily a bad thing:

                Jim and Joe

        • CR
          Posted March 12, 2019 at 4:10 pm | Permalink

          50 years ago at this time, I was anxiously awaiting the April letters (thick envelope or thin?) from several prestigious schools. I was discussing my top choice (I was later wait-listed) with a classmate, who told me with certainty that he would be admitted there, despite not having commensurate academic credentials. How did he know? He was successful at a certain sport (not a major one, and one I quit due to lack of success)and the coach there assured him he was in. I’m sure no money changed hands; the coach just needed some good athletes who were at least academically qualified, and the school let him choose.

  14. Mark R.
    Posted March 12, 2019 at 2:35 pm | Permalink

    I can’t tell from the reporting so far if any of the children were complicit. I feel sorry for the one’s who weren’t, because they’ll know any success they have/had wasn’t due to their own merit. I also wonder if some of these kids will be expelled or re-tested.

    • Martin
      Posted March 12, 2019 at 3:14 pm | Permalink

      I think they should be expelled.
      It won’t repair the potential damage done to honest students whose places were stolen by the crooked parents.

    • Posted March 12, 2019 at 3:21 pm | Permalink

      I have read a report that there will be no consequences for the students, that many if not most of them had been kept in the dark about the schemes, and some have already graduated.

      It is impossible to know how they would cope on their own merit. Maybe some would make it after all. Others would go to not so elite universities where they might have been even better off.

  15. Mark R.
    Posted March 12, 2019 at 2:44 pm | Permalink

    And meanwhile in the UK… Lots of big news today; and for once, Trump isn’t a culprit.

  16. Martin
    Posted March 12, 2019 at 3:03 pm | Permalink

    I can only imagine the embarrassment for some of these students who may not have known what their parents did to get them accepted to these schools.

  17. Curtis
    Posted March 12, 2019 at 3:13 pm | Permalink

    This seems very odd. If you are stupid, you are likely to flunk out of these schools once you get there. Admission bribes won’t make a student who belongs at community college into a Stanford grad. These bribes could only upgrade your school by a little.

    Also how much is a degree at some of these schools worth? While most of these schools are pretty good, could a University of Texas degree really be worth $500,000 more than one from University of North Texas?

    • Posted March 12, 2019 at 3:30 pm | Permalink

      Where I live and work, it is difficult to kick out a student who has been let in once. I suspect that it is the same worldwide, including the USA.

      Only yesterday commenter Curtis wrote on this site: “the Harvard alumni my wife and I have met have generally been clueless dunces. I have probably met only a dozen but most seem to have been educated well past their abilities… Some have been so incompetent that I checked to see whether they actually went to Harvard.”

      How did George Bush Jr. graduate? Or, for that matter, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez?

      • Curtis
        Posted March 12, 2019 at 3:36 pm | Permalink

        Touche.

      • Posted March 12, 2019 at 3:38 pm | Permalink

        Private schools do not like to flunk people out. It makes them look bad not to have a high graduation rate. A few do flunk out but not many if they go to class sans read the assignments. The hard part is being selected to get in.

      • Martin
        Posted March 12, 2019 at 7:28 pm | Permalink

        As far as I know, AOS was not born into a family of millionaires and did not enjoy the same privileges as GWB (or you, probably).

        • Posted March 13, 2019 at 1:32 pm | Permalink

          Her father was well-to-do. You do not need to be really rich to sneak through a back door or two. If this phenomenon was restricted to the really rich and privileged, it would not be so scary, because they are few.

          I don’t know what privileges AOC has had (or not), but the facts are that she has a diploma in economics (cum laude) from a top university, yet everything related to economics that comes out of her mouth suits more a 5th-grader. The Boston University must do an internal investigation how she has passed her exams and graduated. With this high-profile alumna, they have become a laughing stock. Still good that she did not choose medicine or civil engineering.

    • Harrison
      Posted March 12, 2019 at 4:03 pm | Permalink

      It almost doesn’t matter if the kid can complete coursework or get a degree worth having. They just want to buy the prestige of the institution’s name.

      It doesn’t make sense to us peons because we cannot comprehend faking our way through our entire lives, but the children of the extremely wealthy can and occasionally do.

      • Posted March 12, 2019 at 8:26 pm | Permalink

        This is how I understand it. Even if they perform at a mediocre level in a posh school, just having graduated from there is a perk in the job market.

    • infiniteimprobabilit
      Posted March 12, 2019 at 7:35 pm | Permalink

      “This seems very odd. If you are stupid, you are likely to flunk out of these schools once you get there.”

      The wrongly-admitted students aren’t necessarily stupid. But only a small proportion of bright people ever get admitted.

      I’d guess that, in their own self-interest to avoid questions being raised, the people running the scheme would try to ensure that only students of adequate intelligence were so favoured.

      cr

    • Posted March 13, 2019 at 12:17 pm | Permalink

      That presupposes there aren’t *quotas*. Lots of schools at programs do not simply say “everyone with this academic standing or higher is in”, because that might be too many.

  18. Posted March 12, 2019 at 3:15 pm | Permalink

    Hopefully the parents will get their just deserts when their kids come home from college with blue hair, unpronounceable pronouns and a head full of woke.

    • Posted March 12, 2019 at 3:32 pm | Permalink

      The parents fully deserve this! Poor kids, however.

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted March 12, 2019 at 3:49 pm | Permalink

      “Head full of woke” — Can we set that to the Yardbirds’ tune “Heart Full of Soul”?

    • yazikus
      Posted March 12, 2019 at 6:31 pm | Permalink

      r’Amen!

  19. Filippo
    Posted March 12, 2019 at 4:56 pm | Permalink

    Here in The Land of the Fee and The Home of the Craven.

    Conrad Hilton IV comes to mind.

  20. yazikus
    Posted March 12, 2019 at 6:30 pm | Permalink

    Wow. So much money – and such risk, for what? Could their kids not get into a decent state school? What, exactly, do they think those institutions would provide that would make these choices worth it? Cynical me wonders whether the connections one makes at these elite institutions really can make or break a successful life, regardless of academic acumen. Pragmatic me sees these parents tossing bucket loads of money, and their kids’ futures down the drain – all for a fancy brand.

  21. Posted March 12, 2019 at 11:20 pm | Permalink

    Just plain disappointing … and sadly not surprising

  22. Jonathan Wallace
    Posted March 13, 2019 at 5:20 am | Permalink

    $6 million seems to be a poor investment in a college place. What is the difference in the earning potential of someone from Harvard and someone from a less prestigious university? It would probably make more sense to set the kid up in business with that money and it wouldn’t involve any fraudulent activity!

  23. SnowyOwl
    Posted March 13, 2019 at 8:38 am | Permalink

    The Cornell Sun had a story this morning about a Greenwich CT alum/parent:
    https://cornellsun.com/2019/03/13/gordon-caplan-88-paid-75000-to-rig-his-daughters-act-score-the-fbi-says-he-and-nearly-50-others-were-charged-with-fraud/

  24. Matthew North
    Posted March 13, 2019 at 10:11 am | Permalink

    I find it hard to believe the kids were unaware of the scheme. The parents worked with the architects of the scheme with boatloads of money changing hands. Their kids may not have been involved with the mechanics of the scam but their parents coached them to “be stupid and “be slow” during evaluation for extra time while taking exams for kids with learning disabilities. I believe the kids were well aware of their parents shenanigans. They just didn’t care because they hugely benefited.

    https://slate.com/human-interest/2019/03/college-admissions-scam-imagine-finding-out-your-parents-bought-your-way-in.html

  25. merilee
    Posted March 13, 2019 at 4:46 pm | Permalink

    Great New Yorker cartoon on this subject:
    https://www.newyorker.com/cartoons/daily-cartoon/wednesday-march-13th-college-admissions


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