Contact: Shanda Ivory
Arlington, VA (March 12, 2019) — The National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC) urged its members today to redouble their commitment to integrity within the college admission process following news reports of efforts by wealthy individuals to get their children into selective colleges and universities as part of a long-running cheating scam.
“This is an unfortunate example of the lengths to which people will go to circumvent and manipulate the college admission process, particularly to gain admission to highly selective colleges,” Stefanie Niles, NACAC president and vice president for enrollment and communications at Ohio Wesleyan University, said of the allegations, calling them an “extreme response to the commodification of the college admission process—one that is focused on college acceptance as an end unto itself.”
The alleged crimes included cheating on entrance exams, as well as bribing college officials to say certain students were coming to compete on athletic teams when those students were not in fact athletes, according to The Washington Post. “The criminal complaint paints an ugly picture of high-powered individuals committing crimes to get their children into selective schools.”
“Admission and counseling professionals understand and have valued ethical behavior as stated in our Code of Ethics and Professional Practices for well over 80 years,” Niles said. “We strive to ensure that all students are treated equitably throughout the process.”
The National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC), founded in 1937, is an organization of more than 15,000 professionals from around the world dedicated to serving students as they make choices about pursuing postsecondary education. NACAC is committed to maintaining high standards that foster ethical and social responsibility among those involved in the transition process, as outlined in the association's Code of Ethics and Professional Practices.
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NACAC was in high demand as a source for comment on the massive admission scandal. Both Stefanie Niles, NACAC president, and David Hawkins, NACAC's executive director of educational content and policy, provided the perspective of the association and its more than 15,000 counseling and admission professionals.
- Education Week, March 12
- NPR Morning Edition, March 13
- New York Times, March 13
- Inside Higher Education, March 13
- Politico, March 13
- Philadelphia Inquirer, March 13
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