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A Persistent Pattern of Unlawful Conduct
Dreaming of a great career and a good life after college, Eric Parms only enrolled at Everset College because he was lured to the school in the suburbs of Atlanta by ruthless recruiters.
Everest College is a system of for-profit colleges in the United States and the Canadian province of Ontario. The schools are owned and operated by Corinthian Colleges, Inc. which also owns Everest University, Everest Institute, Heald College, and WyoTech. They offer education programs in fields such as accounting, business administration, computer information science, criminal justice, health care, paralegal studies, and massage therapy.
Eric Parms had seen the school’s television commercials, he’d heard the pledges of admissions staff, and he had listened to their rates of job placement by staff who assured him that the campus career services office would help him to find work in his field once he graduated.
Corinthian Colleges is under investigation by several states attorneys general for deceptive advertising and other fraudulent acts. “According to California Attorney General Harris’ complaint, CCI’s predatory marketing efforts specifically target vulnerable, low-income job seekers and single parents who have annual incomes near the federal poverty line. In internal company documents obtained by the Department of Justice, CCI describes its target demographic as “isolated,” “impatient,” individuals with “low self-esteem,” who have “few people in their lives who care about them” and who are “stuck” and “unable to see and plan well for future.” It is alleged the schools targeted people meeting these targets through aggressive and persistent internet and telemarketing campaigns and through television ads on daytime shows like Jerry Springer and Maury Povich.
According to Huffington Post Former employees in career services offices at Everest College campuses in six states described a culture of data manipulation inside the company, one where hitting monthly employment targets took priority over finding quality positions for students.
“Everest was one of 15 for-profit colleges cited by the Government Accountability Office for deceptive or questionable statements that were made to undercover investigators who went in posing as applicants. Two unnamed campuses were cited in this report.”
In September of 2010, a group of Everest College graduates sued the school for fraud, alleging deceptive recruitment practices concerning costs of attendance, the value of the degree, and whether credits earned there would transfer to other schools. Generally, credits from nationally accredited institutions are not transferable to other colleges and universities.
In October 2013, the California Attorney General filed suit against Corinthian Colleges, alleging “false and predatory advertising, intentional misrepresentations to students, securities fraud and unlawful use of military seals in advertisements.”
Image Credit: www.huffingtonpost.comA Persistent Pattern of Unlawful Conduct by Jaan