UW Madison associate professor on recent college bribery scandal

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MADISON, Wis. (WSAW) -- An associate professor at University of Wisconsin-Madison is speaking out after Secretary of Education Betsy Devos says the department is looking into a recent college bribery scandal that violated federal education rules.

Fifty people have been charged with bribing coaches and other school administrators to get their children into elite universities. The coaches worked at colleges including Yale, Stanford, Georgetown and the University of Southern California. Most are private schools that accept federal funding and are bound by federal education rules.

"I think there is this exceptional pressure for what they call enhancement strategies, where there's test preps, there is cover letter and admission letter consulting firms or consultation services, as a whole range of ways that families are enhancing their services of getting into these schools," noted associate professor Nick Hillman. "Because they think that that's an important--it's an important social indicator for their child and their child's future."

Hillman adds that most colleges are not as selective, if at all, about admitting students. For the most part, he says, students and parents are applying to colleges the right way.