Farmington University - Customs Sting

Discussion in 'Accreditation Discussions (RA, DETC, state approva' started by AuditGuy, Dec 6, 2019.

  1. AuditGuy

    AuditGuy Member

  2. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly Staff Member

    What a vile and reprehensible operation. How were students supposed to know the place was fake when they listed it as approved on the DHS web site and enlisted ACCSC as an accomplice to publicly state the school was accredited? As a former PDSO I'm well aware there are students who play fast and loose with the rules, but this isn't the way to find them.
    Maniac Craniac, Phdtobe and chrisjm18 like this.
  3. Phdtobe

    Phdtobe Well-Known Member

    Very sad indeed.
    Maniac Craniac likes this.
  4. Steve Levicoff

    Steve Levicoff Well-Known Member

    Why not? I like laughing at dumb-ass foreigners . . . as much as I like laughing at dumb-ass Americans. It's a matter of equal rights - laughing at all dumb-ass people equally.

    Besides, I'm sure the ICE agents had fun time at this ruse - who are we to deprive them of such entertainment? It certainly seems more constructive than their other form of entertainment, separating young children from their families at our southern borders.
  5. Maniac Craniac

    Maniac Craniac Moderator Staff Member

    Jokes aside, because entrapment is a bad thing and because government should prevent bad things, not cause them.

    I know you're joking, and that's fine, but sometimes it's really hard to figure out what point you're trying to make with your jokes. If there even is a point, that is, although it's also fine if there's no point. What I'm trying to say is, I really don't know if I should agree with you, disagree with you, or just be happy that you're enjoying yourself in this thread.
    SteveFoerster and chrisjm18 like this.
  6. msganti

    msganti Active Member

    The Admissions Counselors (also recruited by DHS) assured students that they can "complete the degree entirely online, without losing their student visa status".
    According to the F1 student visa terms, one has to be a full-time on-campus student, and can not be doing ALL of their courses online. DHS says the students "willfully" violated the visa terms and abused their visa.

    So according to DHS, any foreign student SHOULD NOT BELIEVE WHAT THE SCHOOL TELLS THEM. The foreign student is expected to completely understand the US accreditation system, the US immigration laws etc before they can apply for admission. How cool is that?
    Phdtobe and Maniac Craniac like this.
  7. Phdtobe

    Phdtobe Well-Known Member

    No government especially an American’s government that espouses all the great values should ever do this. The government used education to go after citizens of India. That is should be wrong in America, maybe not in South Korea, Russia, and China, but should be wrong in America. As lover of education, I think we all should all agree that an education institution owned by the Federal Government should be legitimate.
    I also think that America should all that it can to protect its borders. Unfortunately, the fake university is about government abuse and not border security.
  8. heirophant

    heirophant Well-Known Member

    I realize that they were foreigners, but even total idiots must have realized that they weren't legitimate university students and were in violation of the law when they weren't taking any classes.

    Read the indictment. From paragraph 7, p.4:

    After a foreign citizen completes his or her course of study, that individual is required to depart the United States within 60 days. Conversely, if the foreign citizen student is no longer enrolled as a full-time student in an approved educational program, making normal progress toward completion of the course of study, stops attending school, or drops below the full course of study without authorization, they are considered as being "out of status" or having "failed to maintain status." Once the foreign citizen is "out of status" or having "failed to maintain status", they must depart the United States within 15 days.

    Why not? Once again, none of these students were indicted on criminal charges. The only criminal indictments named the recruiters. (All Indian nationals, apparently.) The "students" were simply required to leave the country, something the law already required them to do anyway, since they were obviously out of status.

    If they desired to remain in the United States on F-1 student visas, and if their purpose in being in the United States was really to take classes and get an education (which they weren't getting at Farmington) their option would have been to transfer to a different school. (A real one this time.)

    Par.9 of the indictment:

    Once in the United States, a foreign citizen student is permitted to transfer from one SEVP-certified school to another, as long as that individual maintains valid F-1 student status and is pursuing a full course of study. To effect such a transfer while maintaining valid status, a foreign citizen student must first obtain a school acceptance letter and a SEVIS transfer form from the SEVP-certified school to which the student intends to transfer. The foreign citizen student may then transfer to that school, obtain a Form I-20, and remain in the United States as long as he or she pursues a full course of study at the new SEVP-certified school.
    Helpful2013 and Maniac Craniac like this.
  9. Helpful2013

    Helpful2013 Active Member

    I really do sympathise with those coming to western countries seeking a better life, but there are legitimate ways to go about that. The education systems of the west provide an avenue that has been exploited, sometimes by people looking for a shortcut, sometimes by genuine baddies. In Britain, students who have entered on student visas must check in with office staff or tutors (signing and showing their visas), a couple of times per term, and those records get passed to the Home Office. It’s a pain for all concerned, and my initial reaction was that a smart person scamming the system would just come to campus on those days and maintain the fiction that they are students. However, some didn’t, immediately disappeared to pursue (ahem) counter-productive agendas, and were tracked down by Security Services and the police.
  10. Phdtobe

    Phdtobe Well-Known Member

    Heirophant, you are an excellent writer and in almost all cases you have brought clarity to a confusing situation. On this one, in my opinion, you haven’t. I am not dismissing your opinion. I am just saying in almost all cases, except this one, you have brought some clarity to the issue. For example, I “J walk” all the time, it is illegal and dangerous.
    Farmington and other institutions like them are the problems and government should do everything to root them out, by the imprisonments of operators for fraud . DI is constantly exposing fraud in education.
    The other issue is immigration and border security. If Farmington was an unground institution run by shady operators then my opinion of ICE’s raid would have been completely different.
    Maniac Craniac likes this.
  11. Helpful2013

    Helpful2013 Active Member

    It is not clear from the article if the students were taking a full load of classes online and did not understand the requirement for classroom time, or if they just were not attending at all. The indictment makes it clear there were no classes, so their characterisation of it as a 'pay to stay scheme' seems spot on.
  12. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly Staff Member

    Except that a lot of the students were asking when classes would start and trying to make sure they'd be classroom-based. That's hardly the approach of those trying to skirt the rules.
    Maniac Craniac likes this.
  13. Helpful2013

    Helpful2013 Active Member

    Steve, did a Farmington student make that claim in another source? I didn’t catch it in the article or indictment, but did note that the indictment explicitly claims that they made students aware that the operation was illegal and they should be careful about discussing it with others.
    If some genuinely confused folks seeking actual education got swept up in this, that’s very sad indeed.
  14. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly Staff Member

    Yes, there was an hour long panel discussion of this on NPR recently, I believe on the Kojo Nnamdi show.

    That the institution was listed as legitimate on the DHS's own web site and on ACCSC's site so that it would be as convincing as possible should be enough to show that the purpose of this wasn't to find students looking to skirt the rules.
  15. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

  16. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

  17. Phdtobe

    Phdtobe Well-Known Member

    Very disconcerting! Had DI known about this school it would have been recommended it after all it was accredited. And you don't expect accredited institutions to get involved in this kind of deception. In Canada, the system is sort of half/half, foreign students are openly recruited and foreign students are giving limited work opportunities. Most foreign students stay after graduation giving us the quality of life we have now. In the US, I believe the stats show that foreign students after graduation are more likely to start businesses, employing million of Americans. I think the government should crack down on people skirting the immigration rules. Institutions that are current doing this practice should be shout down and operators jailed. I truly don't see this as cracking down on bad immigrants, but an elaborate abuse perpetrated against citizens of India who are quite possible some of the USA best immigrants.
    SteveFoerster likes this.
  18. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

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