Academic Fraud

UNC Chancellor Carol Folt at a BOT meeting in September 2016
Emily Kristina Gabbard / WUNC

The academic and athletic scandal at the University of North Carolina dominated headlines for years.

Allegations of paper classes and inappropriate assistance to student-athletes prompted internal and external investigations. And newly released correspondence shows what was going on behind-the-scenes in the midst of revelations about academic fraud. 

multiple choice test
Alberto G. / Flickr Creative Commons

This is a rebroadcast of a show that aired earlier this year.

College athletics programs are under a lot of pressure to make money for their schools. That means, among other things, keeping players academically eligible.

Kenan Memorial Stadium at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
William Yeung / Flickr/Creative Commons

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill announced today it has received a Notice of Allegations from the NCAA. It is the second set of allegations UNC has received in the past five years.

The NCAA reopened its examination into academic irregularities at UNC last year. The notice is expected to outline allegations of fraudulent classes taken by student-athletes at the university.

multiple choice test
Alberto G. / Flickr Creative Commons

    

College athletics programs are under a lot of pressure to make money for their schools. That means, among other things, keeping players academically eligible.

The scandal at UNC-Chapel Hill is one example. An investigator there found that over the course of 18 years, nearly 3,000 students took classes that did not require them to show up. About half were student athletes, and the report pointed the blame at a few administrators.

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Transcript

LOURDES GARCIA-NAVARRO, HOST:

A group of faculty at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill are pursuing the idea of a new ethics policy.

At a Faculty Executive Committee meeting Monday, epidemiology professor Jim Thomas proposed developing a comprehensive ethics policy for the university as a whole. Thomas says he first suggested the idea a decade ago, but the recent scandal involving sham classes has allowed the proposal to gain traction.

classroom
Malate269 / Wikimedia Commons

A regional accrediting agency is launching another probe into UNC-Chapel Hill's academic fraud scandal.

The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges is reviewing the findings of the independent Wainstein Report. That document showed that more than 3,000 students were enrolled in no-show classes and bogus independent studies.

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Now a conversation with UNC's Chancellor Carol Folt. I began asking by her about the accusation you just heard - that this report is a whitewash.

Fake classes, inflated grades and one academic department that facilitated it all. Those are all detailed in a newly released report on grade-fixing at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.

The scandal came to light in 2011, but the report out Wednesday offers the most wide-sweeping look yet at how some school staff members boosted the grades of more than 3,000 students — nearly half of them athletes — over nearly 20 years.

    

From 1993 to 2011, more than 3,000 students at UNC-Chapel Hill took classes that did not require them to show up.

They were told only to submit a final paper, and they got artificially inflated grades. Nearly half were student-athletes who benefitted from the classes by remaining eligible to play.

Those findings were released Wednesday from former federal prosecutor Kenneth Wainstein, who had been commissioned by the university to investigate academic fraud.

#SocialMediaNC via Twitter

On Wednesday, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill announced the results of an independent investigation conducted by former federal prosecutor Kenneth Wainstein into past academic irregularities at Carolina. WUNC's Jeff Tiberii was at the press conference. Here are his tweets, along with some others (most recent tweet first):

Kenan Memorial Stadium at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
William Yeung / Flickr/Creative Commons

Update Thursday 9:04 a.m.:

Kenneth Wainstein says academic fraud at UNC Chapel Hill began more than 20 years ago. The former federal prosecutor detailed the findings of his eight-month investigation Wednesday. It’s the latest in a series of investigations that marks one of the worst scandals in the school’s 225-year history.

unc.edu

On Saturday UNC Chapel Hill inducted its first female chancellor, Carol Folt.

UNC Athletics Logo
UNC-Chapel Hill

A second indictment has come out in the UNC football scandal. Georgia based sports agent Terry Watson was in Orange County Court Wednesday. He is alleged to have provided improper benefits to former UNC football players with the hope of later signing them as clients. Documents allege Watson funneled more than 18-thousand dollars to wide receiver Greg Little and gave cash and gifts to defensive lineman Marvin Austin. The agent is charged with 13 counts of athlete-agent inducement – a felony, and one count of obstruction of justice.

Holden Thorp
UNC-Chapel Hill

  Holden Thorp will serve as provost at Washington University in Saint Louis after he steps down as chancellor at UNC-Chapel Hill.

Thorp announced the move in a campus-wide e-mail Monday morning.  Thorp had said he would stay at UNC to teach and conduct research in the chemistry department, but he says the new position will allow him to return to teaching and research while keeping administrative duties.

A UNC Board of Governors panel says it agrees with most of the findings from an earlier investigation of academic fraud at UNC-Chapel Hill.

An academic department at UNC-Chapel Hill is under fire after a scathing internal report discovered numerous no-show classes and grade changes from 2007 to 2009.