'This is a joke right?'
A former official at the for-profit college DeVry University is going to run the Department of Education's unit investigating fraud at for-profit colleges. BuzzFeed News reported Wednesday that it had obtained an email confirming that Education Secretary Betsy DeVos had selected former DeVry official Julian Schmoke to lead the enforcement unit, which is currently looking into claims that DeVry defrauded its students.
Schmoke was the head of DeVry's science and engineering school until 2012, which BuzzFeed noted means he likely was not "closely involved" with DeVry's slew of recent cases. Last year, the for-profit college reached a $100 million settlement with the Federal Trade Commission over claims it "misled students about their chances of getting a job," BuzzFeed reported.
The decision to tap a former for-profit college official to head the unit has left many scratching their heads. People within the Department of Education are reportedly worried this could complicate the unit's capacity to hold for-profit colleges fully accountable. "This is a joke, right?" tweeted Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.). "Basically akin to nominating influenza to be the surgeon general."