Even as the students enrolled in the tainted Herguan University at Sunnyvale scratch their heads on what to do next, disclosures of how the institute was a glorified ‘diploma mill’ are coming to surface. The university had reportedly resorted to luring students with monetary benefits and cut-offs for the players facilitating admissions.
Often ‘seniors’ at Herguan University recommend the institute to aspirants and are given tuition waivers or monetary compensation to the tune of US $1,000. Further, consultancies get paid around 10 to 15 per cent of the tuition fee shelled out by the student for glossing over the fact that such sham schools lack accreditation.
“Now I thank god that I was saved from joining Herguan University as my visa was rejected by the US consulate,” said Rahul Thumma, who was accepted at the varsity in the fall of 2010.
Shedding light on the nexus between consultancies and schools such as Herguan and the infamous Tri-Valley university, Rahul said that it is often the desperation of students which lands them in trouble. “I was working on my application process to pursue my higher education abroad through a consultancy in Hyderabad. They gave me a very attractive picture of Herguan University and did not mention anything about accreditation. Further, I was asked to speak to a senior in the university whom I did not know personally. He sold the idea of applying for the course there and only after my visa was rejected by the US consulate did I realize that it was not a credible organization,” Rahul said.
Though the fee charged by these universities are a fraction of what other private schools in US charge, the students are often burdened with additional levies after admission. “We are often asked to pay for delayed submissions and other sundry things,” said a student of the university who did not wish to be named.
The directions given by the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) requiring students to seek transfers to accredited schools within a fortnight will lead to an more burden on them. As most of the universities are unlikely to accept the transferred credits, the students will have to start afresh and will have to pay the tuition fee again.