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Most people go to university to get a degree and get a good job. In a competitive job market, it helps to make connections. So when a college or university claims to have relationships with reputable employers, it may convince you to join. But beware: Claims like these can be a ploy to attract new students — and your tuition fees. In fact, the FTC says that’s something a for-profit university can do as part of a broader advertising campaign.
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In a proposed settlement announced today, the FTC says the for-profit University of Phoenix and its parent company, Apollo Education Group, Inc., falsely claimed that their relationships with top companies created employment opportunities, particularly for Phoenix students. They work with these companies to develop courses.
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The FTC says the University of Phoenix used a multi-media advertising campaign to attract students, including ads specifically targeting the military and Hispanics. The companies’ “Let’s Get Hired” campaign featured several top employers, including Microsoft, Twitter, Adobe and Yahoo, giving the false impression that UOP was working with these companies to create job opportunities for its students.
As part of the $191 million settlement, the companies will refund $50 million to former students and pay $141 million in student loans directly to the school. The proposed order prohibits companies from engaging in other deceptive business practices. In addition, it requires reporting agencies to delete loans from individuals’ credit reports, notify people that a loan has been canceled, and ensure that individuals have access to their transcripts and transcripts.
Before enrolling in school, it is important to do your homework. You can find important information about each school in the US College of Education Navigator. For example, if you enter a school’s name, you can find out whether it’s public or private, for-profit or for-profit, accreditation status, and actual student loan rates.
Also, see what people are saying about the schools you are considering. Search online for the school name and words like “review,” “complaint,” or “fraud.”
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If you’re looking to further your education, do your homework to know what you’re paying for. See Choosing a College: Questions to Ask.
Added December 19, 2019: FTC will identify individuals eligible for $50 million at University of Phoenix with FTC. You do not need to apply or claim to receive payment. If you would like to receive email updates about this settlement, please sign up here.
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Declining Enrollment At University Of Phoenix Suggests Much Leaner Apollo Ahead
We do not edit comments to remove objectionable content, so please make sure your comment does not contain any of the above. Comments published on this blog become part of the public domain. To protect your privacy and the privacy of others, please do not include personal information. The opinions expressed in this blog are those of the individuals who expressed them. They are not affiliated with or represent the views of the Federal Trade Commission. The University of Phoenix, after five years of precipitous enrollment declines, is dramatically preparing for the near future with thousands fewer students and a smaller student footprint. The for-profit education industry.
Its parent company is trying to stabilize hiring at 2002 levels, which saw a few thousand fewer employees. The move could have far-reaching implications for the high-profile Apollo Education Group and its Phoenix headquarters.
Apollo has ended operations at dozens of school sites in other states and has told investors that their student populations are likely to decline for at least another year. Last week, it cut 50 locations in 12 states, including Arizona, a spokesman said.
Its net income is estimated at $2.6 billion this year, down 47 percent from $4.9 billion in 2010.
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Investors once held about $11 billion in shares of the company as the company outperformed competition in the for-profit education space. It remains profitable, but investors have less than $1 billion in it, meaning Apollo isn’t the best-funded education company in Phoenix.
“Despite near-term headwinds, I believe the long-term future is bright for Apollo Education Group,” said Greg Cappelli, the company’s CEO. In a written statement
, he noted that the university is in the midst of “dramatic changes” that will still affect the company and its top executives even as it grows internationally.
The problems are not unique to Apollo. Eight of the 13 publicly traded companies in nonprofit education have lost 75 percent of their value in the past five years, Cappelli said.
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The University of Phoenix, a pioneer of distance learning, now faces competition on all fronts, from a new generation of cost-conscious students, investigations into its military recruitment and more stringent federal regulations.
Apollo executives have operated retail and distribution of educational offerings for years; They hope the free fall in freshman enrollment stops and the company regains its footing.
“We haven’t seen any material improvement in the underlying business,” said Michael Turken of Compass Point Research and Trading in Washington, DC. does
“They’re going back to their roots of trying to focus on the student population that’s going to have really good results,” said Corey Greendale, senior vice president of First Analytics in Chicago. “Based on the results, that’s kind of the right thing to do.” But that means it’s a smaller target population, and the drop was longer than any of us thought when they started.
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Cappelli acknowledged a “small but strong” university and said “our workforce numbers will always remain dynamic.” He won’t calculate the changes before Apollo’s year-end earnings report on Oct. 12.
The University of Phoenix’s staff-to-student ratio has remained largely the same for more than 20 years, suggesting a significant reduction in jobs if enrollment drops to 150,000.
“It’s clear the company is full of middle managers. I expect at least a round of thousands of layoffs,” said Alternative Research Services Inc., a Connecticut-based firm that provides research for investors. said Robert MacArthur, president of
It’s unclear how that will affect Phoenix, which now has less than a fifth of the company’s workforce, mostly at the metro Phoenix campus where the company is headquartered on Interstate 10 southeast of Phoenix and has its main office in Tempe.
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Few believe that Apollo is headed for the corporate graveyard. It is still the third best funded company in the country and remains a major presence in adult post-secondary education.
People who want to earn a college degree — but need a flexible schedule — are the main market for Apollo’s other schools, including the University of Phoenix and Western International University. The company also focuses on non-traditional students, often working adults.
Many of the company’s students rely heavily on federal student loans, money the US government gives schools to pay for classes, to finance their education.
Online education joined Apollo forces in the mid-2000s when federal student loans became more readily available, then the Great Recession combined with sending older students back to school.
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Now, traditional universities, including Arizona State University, are catching up. They have improved their online offerings and emphasized their educational quality. Companies like Grand Canyon Education, parent of Grand Canyon University in Phoenix, are competing with their own innovative offerings.
Cappelli, who earned $23.7 million in compensation from 2009 to 2014, has said for years that Apollo has a turnaround strategy that will keep the company and its university profitable and thriving.
He has repeatedly mentioned
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