Private agencies are targeting veterans and eager students. Jobs are scarce and education is more important than it has been in years. The cost of education continues to rise, and agencies are employing tactics to access Post 911 GI Bill dollars. Veterans are left without degrees, or with degrees that hold little value. In addition, veterans are forced to repay large student loans they cannot afford. Help stop predatory practices against veterans by large corporations.
Sonorra C. (Ray) McMath, MA, LMFTA, MHP
Refund GI bill and student loan funds acquired through predatory practices
Private agencies are targeting veterans and eager students. Jobs are scarce and education is more important than it has been in years. The cost of education continues to rise, and agencies are employing tactics to access Post 911 GI Bill and student loan funds. Veterans are left without degrees, or with degrees that hold little value. In addition, veterans are forced to repay large student loans, while institutions continue to employ deceptive practices, targeting unsuspecting students.
After attending this school for over 2 years, attempting to obtain my PsyD, I was informed that the school was closing the program due to lack of enrollment. From the first day I expressed interest in this school this agency was seeking APA accreditation, which motivated my decision to continue.
The last response was, "...there were no guarantees." It is consider fraud when an agency advertises to provide a service verbally or in writing in order to obtain financial gain, and later fails to make good on the offer. To later say, "There are no guarantees;" is not good enough.
The school offered to refund any credits that could not transfer to another "Argosy" campus, meaning another state. Relocation allowance and housing were not options. In this economy, I cannot afford a mortgage payment and rent in another state to complete this degree. I explained this, and still there was no support.
A second option was to transfer into another program at the Seattle campus. Surely you can understand that I enrolled in a PsyD program, and had I a desire to pursue another degree, I would have done so from the start. There were attempts to convince me to pursue a second Masters in Psychology, of which I have from an accredited school.
I asked to transfer to University of WA, with a refund for those credits that would not transfer. In addition to assuring me none of the credits would transfer over, I was informed, "That is not an option."
When a school decides to close a program, it has an obligation to make reasonable accommodations. To do so otherwise is negligent. I used my 911 GI bill and student loans. Now I have no money left for my GI bill and all the money used on books and the monthly stipend is no longer available. Local lawyers acknowledge I have a valid case, but I do not have $30,000.00 to obtain legal services. I have filed state and federal complaints, including complaints with the state veteran agencies, and seem to get the run around.
I simply requested assistance in providing the opportunity to continue my education. I am a service connected disabled veteran (over 50%). You have no idea how difficult it is to go to school, work, and care for a family as a single parent. If the school is offering a refund to those who remain with Argosy, the same should be offered to those who choose to leave Argosy. This is not the case.
I have been bullied, dismissed, and readmitted into the program since expressing a desire to transfer to another school. I have chosen to seek support from the public, because I feel ignored by agencies that are designed to prevent this behavior.
Please provide a refund of GI bill and student loan funds acquired so that I might obtain a degree at a more creditable institution. I cannot get the time back, but I can certainly benefit from a proper education, less debt, and compensation.
Sonorra C. (Ray) McMath, MA
Sergeant First Class (SFC) Retired