Real Talk: A Scandal That Shocks No One

Reports of systemic cheating have the public angry, but unsurprised

Marian Sahakyan and Rory Cohen

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Was anyone surprised that some of the children of the rich and famous lacked the merit to attend top-notch universities and bribed their way in (either knowingly or unknowingly)? In an informal poll of newsroom students (close to 30), the majority said they weren’t surprised. One student even said she was “shook,” that she has no idea that bribing one’s way in was actually a federal crime.

Between 2011 and February 2019, William “Rick” Singer, a Newport Beach, Calif., resident was charged in a “racketeering conspiracy, money laundering conspiracy and obstruction of justice,” according to the Department of Justice’s District of Massachusetts office.

Singer has allegedly conspired with parents, coaches at top-tier universities, an administrator, and others. His scheme was so elaborate that it included two SAT and ACT test administrators who provided an unfair advantage in time for “elite” students, outright allowed cheating, or changed test choices for students.

If you want to read the full charges, El Vaquero has created a custom link: bit.ly/DOJMAS

In a special podcast, we sat down to discuss the implications of the scandal, especially from a context of a college professor who graduated from University Southern California, one of the universities implicated, and a student who considered attending the university.

You can go to this custom link to listen to the full radio segment:

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