The College Admissions Scandal – Can Money Buy Everything?

On March 12, 2019, fifty people were charged in federal court by the U.S. Attorney for the District of Massachusetts for illicitly gaining admission for their children to highly selective universities, including Georgetown, the University of Southern California, Stanford and Wake Forest. Among these fifty people are high profile individuals like actresses Lori Loughlin and Felicity Huffman, CEOs, as well as executives from a major asset manager, an investment firm, and a prestigious law firm.
Their goal was to get their children admitted to prestigious colleges across the U.S. The parents allegedly paid between $200,000 and $6.5 million each for an approximate total amount of $25 million.
The main character in this alleged scheme is William Singer, a college counselor based in Newport Beach, California. He operated The Edge College & Career Network, a for-profit counseling and admissions company, and The Key World Foundation, a nonprofit organization.
To get the children admitted, Mr. Singer would bribe college entrance exam officials, who would either help the kids or change their answers at the end. In other cases, he bribed university coaches, to have applicants recruited as athletes when in reality they had never played or participated in the sport. There are also allegations of third parties taking classes and exams in place of the children, and submission of falsified applications.
The investigation is ongoing but Yale University already took some measures. The University is the first to officially rescind the admission of a student linked to the Admissions Scandal. The student’s parents allegedly paid $1.2 million to get their child into Yale.

On March 25, 2019, the first 12 defendants appeared in a Boston federal courtroom and pleaded not guilty to charges of racketeering conspiracy. More hearings with other defendants are scheduled for the end of March and the beginning of April.  
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Reinhard von Hennigs