Dear Commons Community,
The Chronicle of Higher Education is reporting that the national advocacy group for student veterans that kicked out 40 chapters at for-profit colleges earlier this month for allegedly providing misleading information to prospective students plans to released the names of 26 chapters that remain suspended. The article states:
“The organization, Student Veterans of America, or SVA, revoked the 40 chapters’ membership three weeks ago after officials discovered that the institutions had listed administrators, not students, as primary contacts and used institutional Web sites and recruitment pages as chapter sites. The group has since reinstated 14 chapters, with up-to-date contact information, after verifying that they are indeed led by students.
The announcement on Thursday will name the 26 chapters—including those at 13 campuses affiliated with Education Management Corporation, the nation’s second-largest publicly traded for-profit higher education company—that have not been reinstated.
Michael Dakduk, executive director of SVA, said he was concerned that some for-profit colleges were taking advantage of the organization’s well-known brand to legitimize their programs. If a campus lists a registrar, an enrollment adviser, or other administrator, as the 26 ousted chapters allegedly did, that compromises the organization’s goal of connecting veterans directly to one another, said Mr. Dakduk. It threatens its credibility, he said.
“We’re worried that some may just be using it to appear that they’re veteran- or military-friendly,” he said in an interview.
The student-veterans’ group has 35 for-profit-college chapters in good standing, including the 14 that were reinstated, Mr. Dakduk said. The recent scrutiny is “not because we’re picking on the for-profits,” he said. “It’s because we don’t know that for-profits have the same standards of handling student organizations that traditional brick-and-mortar institutions have.” This week, SVA officials sent a 10-question survey to its 35 for-profit-college chapters to determine how much independence they have from administrators.”