Graduate LaSalle University, Mandeville, Louisiana

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by Lost4words, Jun 25, 2009.

  1. Lost4words

    Lost4words New Member

    I would like to connect with anyone who has been hurt by what happened when our degrees became invalid. I am English and I worked hard for a Masters and PhD with LaSalle before I came over to US in 1996 - I wanted to ask if anyone could let me know whether the Apostille Certificate allows you to use the Degree from LaSalle even though it was a non-accredited organization? Also, what is the process to get the Apostille? I would love to be acknowledged for all the work I submitted for these degrees, and would like to hear from other people who feel the same. We should get credit for all the work we produced at a minimum and best case scenario is that we get our degrees recognized. I look forward to hearing from anyone who has degrees from LaSalle University, Mandeville Louisiana.

    Also, I didn't get to hear about the possibility of obtaining sealed transcripts from the University before it closed down - so unfortunately, I don't have a transcript with raised seal to get certified or Apostilled... (whatever that is)
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 25, 2009
  2. Bill Huffman

    Bill Huffman Well-Known Member

    An apostille would simply prove that you have a diploma from LaSalle. It does not indicate any validity to LaSalle or a degree from LaSalle. Diploma mills will sometimes try to convince people that an apostille would prove more than this but it does not. See
  3. Lost4words

    Lost4words New Member

    Re: Bill Huffman's reply

    I take objection to you calling it a Diploma Mill - I worked very hard for the two degrees and my doctorate was outstanding - as a published writer I can testify that the standard of work expected to gain an "A" at LaSalle was that of an average college. Whilst Kirk and his coherts may have abused the system, those of us who worked hard are the ones who have been punished the most; and it doesn't help when these comments about Diploma Mills are used in ignorance - we genuinely worked for a degree - that work should be recognized and credit should be gained for it - some of the doctorate projects which were submitted were worthy of publishing (as a fellow grad has had his published by the government) and I wish I could get my hands on the work I submitted to show people like you just how hard I worked, how competent my submissions and how tainted we grads are by the Diploma Mill tag attached to a degree we worked hard for. I am British, when I researched distance learning colleges, LaSalle was accredited - I had no idea it would some day not be. So, be careful when using the term Diploma Mill to someone who has worked hard for a useless piece of paper.
  4. Bill Huffman

    Bill Huffman Well-Known Member

    I call LaSalle a diploma mill simply because the owner was put in jail for running the place. To me, that seems like a very reasonable and safe criteria for calling a place a diploma mill. Just because it was a diploma mill it doesn't mean that no one worked hard for their degree though. It means that people can't know who did and did not work hard for the degree and that the diploma is essentially a useless piece of paper. Being a diploma mill also means that it doesn't really matter whether you were one of the people that did minimal work for your diploma or did lots of work for your diploma, both diplomas have the same value to others.

    Anyway, since you've been in the USA for a while, perhaps you know about notary publics. The notary public function proves that the person signing the document was who they say they were. It does not mean that the document itself is valid/valuable/true. An apostille is very similar.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 26, 2009
  5. Lost4words

    Lost4words New Member

    I wasn't aware there were graduates who didn't work for their degree. You mean, they could be bought with little to no work done? I find it hard to believe because of the expectations I had placed upon me - I didn't get the impression one could turn in rubbish and still get a diploma. At one point, I was asked if I would be an academic advisor (which on reflection I thought was a little strange) but also flattering.. Anyway, its old hat now... a couple of useless pieces of paper. But, the fact is, I do have a PhD. N'est pas?
  6. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

    Non, pas vraiment.
  7. Randell1234

    Randell1234 Moderator Staff Member

    I am sure many people put in hard work and held themselves to a higher standard. While it is true you have a PhD, using a PhD from a degree mill may hurt more then help. Let's say you apply for a position that requires a bachelors degree and you apply with a respectable bachelors from a traditional school but a masters and a PhD from a mill, your integrity and/or judgment may be called into question and you may be never get the position even though you met the minimum requirements with your bachelors degree. Does that make sense?
  8. Robbie

    Robbie New Member

    Lost4words - As a natural American citizen, I apologize for our patchwork accreditation system and how accreditation works here. People who are not well versed in this topic can and do get duped. By law, any agency can be an accreditation agency here in the USA and can voluntarily submit to be recognized by US Dept of Ed or CHEA. If they don't, then there is nothing illegal about it as long as they state they are not recognized by the US DoE or CHEA. Any group of schools can form their own peer review accreditation process and become an accrediting agency. They may be nothing at all, do nothing but use a name, but, they are still considered an accreditation agency. I blame on it on our laws. If they would enforce and develop laws to describe exactly what an accreditation agency is to do, then we would not have these mom and pop accreditation agencies run by crooks. I am very pro national accreditation overseen by the US Dept of Education. One accreditation for one national education system. Then there would not be any guess work of which one is legit and which one is slippery. And the transfer of credits from college to college would be a lot easier.
  9. mbaonline

    mbaonline New Member

    Not coincidence...

    Two "wronged" graduates from LaSalle in one day?

    This can't be random. It seems like a concerted effort to get some sort of recognition.

    Lost4words, I suggest you enroll in an accredited "dissertation-only" PhD program (i.e. from UK, South Africa or Australia) and apply your knowledge to a new (perhaps related) dissertation and get a real PhD. You might feel that this is extra work, but nothing good comes from trying to use an unaccredited PhD in most instances. Good luck.
  10. TCord1964

    TCord1964 New Member

    Object all you want; the place was a degree mill. I remember a piece about LaSalle on 60 Minutes, in which a former employee of the school stated that the guy who ran the place would use a postage meter to weigh written assignments submitted by students. The heavier they were, the higher the grade. Do you really want to be associated with a place like that? I know I wouldn't. But hey...don't just take my word for it:

    Sorry, but you'll have to do the work all over again at a legitimate school to get the degrees you thought you had earned.
  11. Radek Gadek

    Radek Gadek New Member

    I've seen a short TV report on schools that go "under" and seeing the interviews with the students who attended, corresponded, or completed their degrees online was grueling. Many of them were on their last breath when they started, and now their degree meant nothing.

    Sorry you had to go through that. Even if you obtained your PhD while the school seemed to be in "good standing" with the rest of the World, the present reputation of the school makes your title obsolete at best.

    As Randell1234 stated, a Bachelor degree from an accredited institution recognized by the U.S. Dept of Education is much better of alone than it being combined with a PhD from LaSalle University.
  12. Lost4words

    Lost4words New Member

    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 12, 2018
  13. Lost4words

    Lost4words New Member


    Thanks for the replies and comments and for taking the time to help and make suggestions.
  14. Dave Wagner

    Dave Wagner Active Member

    Oh, gnat flatulence! Sorry, I don't apologize for States rights and unaccredited schools... however, I do feel sorry that the individual was hurt by criminal activity; I say "criminal" meaning the responsible person was indicted, tried, and convicted.
  15. Radek Gadek

    Radek Gadek New Member

    White-Collar Crime is a criminal offense. You are in the right :)
  16. Denver

    Denver Member

    I can understand how LaSalle duped people. Unlike many such schools, there was a campus near New Orleans. I visited it after the school close and it was impressive, there was even a large chapel. I taught at a community college with an individual who worked for five years on his LaSalle dissertation (they sent it back three times for revision) and a retired professor from a B and M school served as his dissertation advisor. He finally graduated in 1994, right before the scandal hit. However, I also recall a radio interview with a former LaSalle staff member who said the only review was to weigh the dissertations. That is the problem, which dissertation is which? Is it the one someone spent five years on and was reviewed, or is it the one someone weighed? There is no way to tell. The registration laws for universities in Louisiana were incredibly weak at that time – so at best you can say state approved, but that does not mean much either. I was in politics at the time and even registered a university as a joke to show my associates how easy it was. The laws of Louisiana were changed as to not to allow this to occur, but there are numerous graduates from schools during this time that are in academic limbo.
  17. Chip

    Chip Administrator

    I received a delightful call today from Steve Windham at the Louisiana Secretary of State's office on this issue. Apparently his office has received a bunch of requests for apostilles, and has had to explain to each person that the document they are seeking won't do any good in legitimizing their bogus degree.

    Steve seems very sincere and interested in helping to get the word out about this, and also seems concerned about the issues with unwonderful schools in Louisiana.

    I've posted a more complete description of the Apostille problem and why it does not confer legitimacy or accreditation on a degree here
  18. Bill Huffman

    Bill Huffman Well-Known Member

    Here's the proper address
  19. John Bear

    John Bear Senior Member

    A poster writes, "I take objection to you calling it a Diploma Mill.."

    LaSalle is one of the rare cases in which the proprietors of a diploma mill pleaded guilty. James Kirk (also known as Thomas McPherson) and his two colleagues were indicted by a federal grand jury on 18 counts of mail fraud, wire (computer and phone) fraud, tax fraud, and conspiracy. All three pleaded guilty. Kirk was sentenced to the maximum term possible in a federal penitentiary, five years.

    The FBI recovered about $12 million in LaSalle assets (about $10 million in cash, and the balance from the sale of Kirk's riverfront mansion -- he had taken a vow of poverty, and his church owned the property). The money was made available for refunds to LaSalle students and graduates.

    The U.S. Attorney wrote to every person in the LaSalle files, informing them that the LaSalle operators had pleaded guilty to running a diploma mill, and that funds were now available for refunds, for those who turned in their diploma(s). Some people did, many didn't.

    The long investigation by the FBI leading to their application for a search warrant, stated that LaSalle had one faculty member serving 15,000 students. (Her only degree was a Bachelor's from LaSalle.)

    Incidentally, when LaSalle students signed their application form, many did not read the small type on the back which made clear that signing that document made them Ministers of Kirk's World Christian Church, and that any degrees they might earn would be religious degrees, regardless of what subject they were in.

    When Kirk arrived at the federal penitentiary at Beaumont, Texas, he promptly started his next diploma mill, Edison University, run from his prison cell, with the help of his wife on the outside. Edison was almost immediately accredited by Maxine Asher's World Association of Universities and Colleges.

    LaSalle was allowed to re-open, with an entirely new and respectable board of directors, who hired the VP of a regionally-accredited school to be their president. But the reputation was so miserable, few people enrolled. They changed the name to Orion College in hopes of making a fresh start, but that didn't work either, and they went out of business.

    --John Bear, diploma mill consultant to the FBI (1979-1990);
    co-author (with FBI Special Agent Allen Ezell) of Degree Mills:
    the billion-dollar industry that has sold more than a million fake degrees
    ; Prometheus Books, 2005.
  20. Bill Huffman

    Bill Huffman Well-Known Member

    In my opinion, one of the sad things about diploma mill degrees is that it can be argued that people that did extra work for the degree can reasonably be considered gullible and foolish. They could have earned the same worthless diploma by doing as little work as possible. Is it fair, absolutely not. I'm saying that it is just sad when people can be considered gullible or foolish for doing the work.

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