Don’t Stop Investigating Reportedly Fraudulent For-Profit Colleges

Target: Betsy DeVos, U.S. Secretary of Education

Goal: Continue investigations into allegedly fraudulent practices by for-profit colleges.

Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos has essentially dismantled the Department of Education’s team charged by the Obama administration with investigating alleged illegal and deceitful practices by for-profit colleges. This move by Secretary DeVos renders enforcement nearly impossible and greatly reduces oversight of for-profit colleges, which in recent years have been accused by students of overinflating enrollment benefits such as degrees and job placement.

Secretary DeVos and several other high-level staffers in the Department of Education have ties to the for-profit colleges they are meant to be regulating. Several of these institutions, such as DeVry University, have been under investigation over the last few years due to allegations of falsifying job placement rates and other fraudulent activities to persuade students into attending these colleges. The team conducting this investigation has been reduced from approximately 12 investigators to three, and the scope of their work greatly reduced, transitioning away from the alleged for-profit college frauds. Meanwhile, some former students of these for-profit colleges cannot get jobs as advertised by the colleges to pay the student loans taken out under the supposed promise of career support and job placement.

How can there be oversight from the Department of Education, when many of the players involved have or had ties to the very institutions accused of fraud? Any hope the former students of these allegedly fraudulent colleges had in getting reparations for their crushing loan debt is waning under the new guidance from the Secretary DeVos. Sign the petition to urge the Department of Education staffers to recuse themselves from actions with conflict of interest and to continue the investigations into the serious claims by students against these for-profit colleges.


Dear Secretary DeVos,

The claims by former students of many for-profit colleges of fraud and broken promises are alarming. More alarming, though, is the fact that you and some of your staffers have ties to these institutions and are greatly rolling back oversight, including the investigation into alleged fraudulent activities.

If for-profit colleges such as DeVry University are misleading students regarding the potential outcomes of their education, or lack thereof, these organizations need to be held accountable. The first step in doing that is to reinstate the investigations into these claims to determine their validity. You cannot hope to support students wishing to better themselves through higher education if these institutions have no oversight from the Department of Education. These institutions’ priority is revenue, not the welfare of the students they have allegedly deceived.

Please, do not strip the investigative team of its scope and team members. Reopen the investigation into these alleged fraudulent activities.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore

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  1. Time to do your job, Barbara.

  2. Greed and Corruption! Real Christian of you….

  3. gen agustsson says:

    report fraud now!

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