Thread regarding ITT Educational Services Inc. layoffs

ACICS active player in ITT-Tech fraud scheme

I don't understand how ITT can be operating still, even by ACICS standards. ACICS has to be participating actively in the fraud. Disgusting and frightening how long this has gone on.

ITT-Tech reminds me of the sports doping scandals in the news. Regulators keep trying to find tests to detect doping, while the dope providers keep coming up with new ways of doping to foil the regulators. Sports heroes turn out to be dope users for decades before they are finally caught. This level of deception requires a huge number of businesses and individuals complicit in the fraud, at the same time an enormous amount of denial. Isn't this same thing going on in for-profit, publicly traded career "colleges?" ACICS has to be complicit in this scam.

ACICS standards for retention are 60%, or programs can be shut down. My understanding is that retention refers to students who continue their programs into the second year. At the campus I worked at, half the students had dropped by the time the second year rolled around.

Is this some kind of loop hole for ITT-Tech? ACICS also has standards on placement rate, of 60%, but this is easy to fudge (students who have any kind of job using direct or indirect skills count.) Disclosures on ITT Tech websites show placement, not retention!

It seems like it would be easy for ACICS to nail ITT-Tech on retention, since it is not so easy to fudge -- students are enrolled or they aren't! Also it seems ACICS could nail ITT-Tech on low nursing exam pass rates -- pass rate data is even publicly posted, so no hiding from that!

ITT-Tech used to change around their program offerings all the time -- I think this was to avoid being held accountable for any kind of standards.

Is retention still a public secret? Is ACICS giving schools a break on this, letting them slide by with "improvement plans?" Most websites, like College Navigator and College Scorecard, don't show retention yet, unfortunately. ITT-Tech campus disclosures don't show retention.

But everyone knows the graduation rate is really low at ITT-Tech, 36% on average. This is on government websites and articles have been written on it (Propublica, / This usually refers to students who graduate from 2 year programs by the time 3 or 4 years have gone by. It seems likely that by the time one year has gone by, the retention would be less than 60%.

Eventually the fraud at ITT-Tech will be exposed conclusively, just like doping in sports finally came out. Unbelievable that it is taking so long, when the victims here are hundreds of thousands of former students, with ruined lives, along with millions of taxpayers. Obviously there has to be enormous amounts of denial, along with many, many individuals and businesses complicit in this fraud.

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Maybe ITT-Tech is failing now because it depends on such a big network of game players. Maybe ITT-Tech can't adapt and thrive because it relies too much on CEO Modany, ACICS, and other long-term players. Is this some kind of a rule for corrupt businesses?

ITT-Tech's parent company is Educational Services, Inc. We all know now that the company doesn't provide education or services to its many victims. It has no real product. It has to be relying on a complicated web of deceit to last this long. Someone will crack.

Maybe Modany will write his business tips in jail.

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Some directors may care, but when they are riding their own staff hard to follow corporate revenue directives regardless of academic standards or student welfare it is clear that they have become part of the problem. Actions speak louder than words!

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, that is one of the most tragic parts of ITT-Tech, to me.

I used to work at a campus near a high poverty area, and the new dean had to be recruiting at a homeless shelter or tent city. I guess she really wanted to make her numbers. She got a bunch signed up for a program that has a placement rate of 27%, Criminology and Forensic Technology.

I quit! But I agreed to sub for one day in a science class this group had to take, their first quarter. Only half the people showed up for the first day of class. One told me about her roommate, who had been arrested for trying to lure a child into a van at a local park -- she believed he was innocent. Several students had rudimentary computer skills, and one did not have the reading glasses she needed to see the keyboard.

So here are individuals spending $6000 for three classes, victims of ITT-Tech advertising campaign, instead of being treated with the care and respect they deserved, instead of getting the help they really need.

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The campus directors care only about the numbers that corp office calls them on and thus don't care at all about academic standards.

That's probably harsh--there are many that do care a lot, but they are constantly ridden HARD by HQ to meet nearly impossible goals. ITT fires nearly everyone on a routine basis (the meet next quarter plan by firing method). It's like caring a lot about setting up a wonderful family reunion & doing a great job getting 40 relatives to attend, all is well, then HQ says you MUST have 150 relatives attend (even if there are only 65 in your family) suddenly your long lost uncle from Tanzania is coming and the stranger around the block that looks like he might possibly pass as being related is brought along to fill in. Desperate measures to satisfy despots.

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Yes, it is clear that ITT-Tech has deliberately chosen their path of evil.

The recruiters's presentations, which are carefully scripted, have no doubt been engineered with the help of the best commercial psychologists. You know, the people who council casinos not to have clocks or windows -- discouraging patrons from keeping track of time.

For example: “We work with industry representatives in developing our course content. The goal is to teach you knowledge and skills used in the industry. Employers also seek other basic skills, like problem solving, the ability to communicate effectively and work well as part of a team. These “soft skills” are also taught in our programs.”

What really happens: I taught the first quarter class called "Problem Solving" at ITT-Tech for a few quarters. It has a mix of problem solving techniques, for personal, business, and math problems among others. Sounds like it may be okay, and employers say they want students who can problem solve. Our assignments were stuff like "how to choose the best pet."

I finally had to stop teaching "Problem Solving" for many reasons, as the curriculum has serious flaws. But the main issue for me was that the students should be addressing this personal problem: finding the best way to go from where they are now to where they want to be, career-wise. But to do this, students would need to investigate what career they really want, and alternatives to ITT-Tech. And that is a forbidden topic -- every student is supposed to be marketed to at all times by all employees. This is probably around the same time I began to feel like I working in a loony bin -- another story.

ITT-Tech could have spent their money on the best educators -- designing programs with real academic bite, and finding ways to assess how well students are learning, etc.

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This all sounds very familiar - a concentration on the numbers that might have to be reported and a tendency to use every trick possible to massage those numbers in ITT Tech's favor.

The campus directors care only about the numbers that corp office calls them on and thus don't care at all about academic standards.

It is clear that ITT Tech has systematically ensured that academic staff have no standing and no independence and are themselves judged on "pass rates" with no reference the students' capabilities.

This is academic fraud pure and simple.

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At ITT it is an unwritten (or maybe even written?) policy that a student visiting for the first time MUST complete a FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). All students interested in financial aid for college will need to complete this form). First-time visiting student prospects are not supposed to be "allowed" to leave the building without completing FAFSA or getting an exception to this approved by management. Otherwise, the "admissions rep" will be "chewed out", glared at, or heatedly questioned for not following procedure.

Every single call must me logged into an antique dos-style database, so HQ can know what every rep and chair is doing to call students to enroll or reenter.

HQ has reentry conference calls every week with every single campus, to badger or put pressure on each campus to get students. Missing a call is a bad move.

HQ has additional special weekly calls for identified campuses that came up short in the previous put on even more pressure--this would also include all the chairs.

ACADEMIC Chairs are required to schedule multiple phonathons every term to badger students into reentering the programs. They are required to spend at least 10 hours every week on such calls.

Another link with some specific documented instructions--to get a better sense of what the ACADEMIC chairs are/were doing.

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Amazing that ITT-Tech tracks attendance and "starts" and retention, etc, with daily updates and accuracy.

Yet they can't keep their catalogs updated properly at all -- updated only once a year, then forgetting to remove chairs and deans who have been gone for years!

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What is creepy to me is that everything at ITT-Tech is geared toward keeping the student enrolled - from the minute they show up for first visit on. Recruiters want to get person to state they think ITT can help them in some way - a specific program, preferably. From them on, its sell sell sell! Sign 'em up and get them seated in class!

The director of recruiting once addressed the faculty at my campus, during faculty inservice, telling us to send any confused student to their recruiters first. He said he knew the students best, and since they came to ITT-tech in the first place, they know they need help. Therefore, he said, the recruiters were obligated to do everything they possibly could to "help." Talk about twisted logic!

This director of recruiting was promoting fraud -- the catalog says students should go to chairs and deans for personal and student advising. Of course now, with chairs laid off, and dean and director position sometimes combined, the only people advising are directly involved in recruiting as well, anyway. FRAUD!!

Recruiters and faculty are rated on retention.

A colleague of mine taught first quarter "Strategies for Technical Professional" last quarter. One student had grade of 5% near the end of the first quarter, in her class, and had dropped other classes part way thru quarter. The instructor had to give the student a ride home one time, since student would be abandoned at campus otherwise. The instructor begged the registrar not to re-enroll the student for the next quarter. But the registrar at my campus told the instructor she was not allowed to discourage any student from continuing in school the next quarter.

So the goal at ITT-Tech is to funnel the students into classes, no matter what. So twisted!!

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Thanks for correction . Some students are earning less than the average - how many depends on the actual distribution of salaries.

Some states (California) require showing prospective students an actual list of salaries -- so these allow computing a median. The medians in these cases aren't too different from average.

Data on standard disclosures is presented as averages; range is also listed.

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Remember (or if you don't know)..that under the "cake" reporting rules, a grad only has to work ONE DAY to be counted as graduating and working in their field. They could get a proper job, last 2 days, yet still be counted in the reported totals.

We did have several VERY respectable companies show up & give great offers & placement to top students (who bothered to study and learn)...but those top students are a low fraction of the many enrollees. These companies were really happy with the grads and often came back for more..BUT they were very selective & probably carefully chose 1 out of 200 grads.

Some remedial brushup training is "officially offered" (CR100-math/101-English courses), but turns out almost every enrollee needs it. One issue is that if students need math remediation they may be taking it at the same time they are taking their actual math course. That's like taking advanced chemistry while at the same time learning basic chemistry.

Way too many of the "students" are not really students at all, they have no car, no pencils, maybe have a felony, have no transportation or even any interest at all in going to school. Some couldn't add 2+2 on a calculator--literally. They get repetitively badgered to enroll/show up, just long enough for ITT to collect the dough. Then they leave in a few weeks & ITT has a process called "reentry" to badger them repeatedly to return for more the next term. Some unwilling students are probably called 100+ times (multiple times daily for 2 months) to enroll, and may do so just to end the constant calling/begging.

On the first day of classes, top staff is required to visit every class within the 1st half hour to verify that new enrollees showed up. These numbers (counts) must be reported to headquarters multiple times a day (& within the first hour). Anyone missing class must be called immediately to encourage them to show up (called a sit). Each sit represents 10's of thousand of potential dollars.

With the removal of most of the full time faculty and many chairs, a lot will have to be fixed to make the situation better.

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I think you are confusing average with median.

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New gainful employment rules should shut down ITT-Tech -- but they don't go into effect until 2017. I am just adjunct faculty, but I have seen disclosures students are given regarding average starting salaries in their programs.

Students might be given the disclosure, by recruiter, once they have decided on a program --- I don't think believe prospective students are allowed to compare programs at their campus. But I have seen disclosures for several programs.

At my campus, the average starting salary for Network Systems Administration associates is $38,100; and the follow-up bachelor program, Information Systems and Cybersecurity, has average starting salary of $36,600. That associates' starting salary in the IT field is not so bad. But notice the salary is LESS for bachelor graduates in IT the same year!

The results in the Electronics programs are similar. For associates in Electrical Engineering Technology, the average starting salary is $37,000. For the follow-up bachelors degree it is $35,600!

Maybe this was just a bad year for my campus. But Kevin Modany doesn't disclose average starting salary for bachelors programs, and it is likely not much better on other campuses, from what I have seen. $36,000 yearly salary may be enough to keep above water on student loan from 2 year program. But for a 4 year program loan, that is not going to cut it!

And on average only a third of students graduate from ITT-Tech, anyway. And at best, 80% or so of students are employed in their field on average. Half of the students who have jobs are earning less than the average starting salary - this is mathematical definition of average. Does not leave many people who enroll at ITT-Tech that end up graduating and getting a well paying job in their field -- let alone earn enough to pay off student loans!

How has this scam gone on for so long!?!?!?! How to stop it???

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