For-Profit College Exec Now In Charging of Overseeing For-Profit College Fraud

Higher education is in crisis, thanks in large part to for-profit colleges. These institutions often promise skills and job placement, only to ultimately provide students with a worthless degree that employers don’t take seriously. All the while, the students have racked up a lot of student loan debt that leaves them in an even more precarious financial situation.

Unfortunately, Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos doesn’t seem to view this situation as a problem. After all, she does work for a man who ran a bogus college – Trump University – that was forced to pay back $25 million to scammed students.

Demonstrating how little she cares about this issue, DeVos has chosen Julian Schmoke, Jr., a former DeVry University executive, to be in charge of the Federal Student Aid Enforcement Unit, an agency that oversees for-profit college fraud cases.

Enlisting a former bigwig from DeVry reads as a giant middle finger to students who want to receive a legitimate, quality education. Just last year, DeVry agreed to pay a $100 million settlement for intentionally deceiving students with false advertisements about placement rates.

In fact, the Federal Student Aid Enforcement Unit was created in direct response to DeVry’s widespread fraud. How in the world is it a good idea to put someone who held a leadership position at that for-profit college in charge of policing DeVry and similar colleges moving forward?

Calling Schmoke’s appointment a coincidence would be naïve given DeVos’s previous actions. Two months ago, DeVos also helped for-profit colleges avoid accountability by “pausing” two Obama-era rules designed to stop schools from scamming their students. Without these rules, some students will still be on the hook for their extensive student loan debt, even if the schools lied about the services and education they could provide.

In advance of DeVos’s choice, a group of Democratic senators had sent a letter imploring the secretary to choose someone independent with consumer protection job experience. Once Schmoke’s selection came out, Senator Chris Murphy tweeted, “This is a joke, right? Basically akin to nominating influenza to be the Surgeon General.”

Those who love playing devil’s advocate may argue that Schmoke is an appropriate choice for the job since he may know firsthand how to defraud students and can better monitor others with that knowledge.

However, that would require Schmoke having some experience in investigation, which would seem to be the top qualification for the job. MarketWatch reports that Schmoke’s résumé lacks any sort of relevant experience in that area. Whereas Robert Kaye, the person who last held this position, had years of previous experience investigating consumer fraud, Schmoke doesn’t have the skills necessary to do the job well even if he wants to.

Hiring Schmoke appears to be DeVos’s way of signaling to the millionaires who run these educational money-making centers that they need not worry about being watched too closely. These schools now have an important friend on the other side.

56 comments

Stephanie s
Stephanie Yabout a year ago

Thank you

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Stephanie s
Stephanie Yabout a year ago

Thank you

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Stephanie s
Stephanie Yabout a year ago

Thank you

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Stephanie s
Stephanie Yabout a year ago

Thank you

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Stephanie s
Stephanie Yabout a year ago

Thank you

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Stephanie s
Stephanie Yabout a year ago

Thank you

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Stephanie s
Stephanie Y1 years ago

Thank you

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Stephanie s
Stephanie Y1 years ago

Thank you

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ERIKA S
ERIKA SOMLAI1 years ago

noted

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Chad A
Chad Anderson1 years ago

What's next? Arsonist in charge of the fire department?

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