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"Race" in College Applications FAQ & Discussion 12

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Replies to: "Race" in College Applications FAQ & Discussion 12

  • 1NJParent1NJParent Registered User Posts: 578 Member
    Here's the link to TM Landry's official website:
    http://www.tmlandrycollegeprep.org/index.html

    Harvard's Fitzsimmons is featured prominently.

    And a link to its school profile:
    http://www.tmlandrycollegeprep.org/TMLandry_school_profile.pdf

    Not sure if any part of it is also falsified.
  • circuitridercircuitrider Registered User Posts: 3,029 Senior Member
    @hebegebe wrote:
    6. In summary, most of the students at Landry ended up worse off than if they attended a supportive school system that made the most of their abilities. This is the basis for mismatch theory.

    Mismatch theory posits that the adcom *knowingly* accepts an applicant that may not have all that it takes to succeed at an elite college. Let's be clear. That is entirely different from accepting a student whose transcript has been doctored and ECs have been woven from whole cloth. The Times article points out that there are few defenses at a college's disposal against out-and-out institutional fraud, especially where the high school in question has no track record with them.
  • 1NJParent1NJParent Registered User Posts: 578 Member
    Yes, the colleges are victims too. But are they been victimized willingly?
  • ChangeTheGameChangeTheGame Registered User Posts: 415 Member
    I took a look at the current ACT Test locator and it looks like the only place close to the school that offered the ACT is at the local public high school. That doesn't mean that the website isn't being deceptive as well, or that the school didn't have another way to doctor the tests, but it looks like it isn't on site (at least for this current year).

    @1NJParent We will see how the colleges that accepted students from the school react. I am sure this is the nightmare scenario for them. What is scary for me is how easily the entire system was manipulated.
  • DolemiteDolemite Registered User Posts: 1,997 Senior Member
    Sad but not surprising. There was a Charter School here in Philadelphia that touted how all the students scored Advanced on the PSSA (Pennsylvania Standardized Tests for grade schools) when in reality it was run like a boot camp for PSSA test preparation.
  • OHMomof2OHMomof2 Registered User Posts: 11,945 Senior Member
    @circuitrider you beat me to it.
    most of the students at Landry ended up worse off than if they attended a supportive school system that made the most of their abilities. This is the basis for mismatch theory.

    No, @hebegebe this isn't about mismatch at all. This is about fraud on the part of an unaccredited private school with zero government oversight making up and submitting to colleges fake student qualifications.
  • hebegebehebegebe Registered User Posts: 2,305 Senior Member
    Ok, apparently somewhere along the way I missed that mismatch explicitly meant that the college chose someone who would then struggle.
  • ucbalumnusucbalumnus Registered User Posts: 72,213 Senior Member
    Re: #3262

    By that definition of "mismatch", less or non selective colleges take chances on many students who, based on prior academic records, are at significant risk of struggling, because those colleges exist to give more students a chance (e.g. community colleges), or because they have no other way of filling seats. Some such students do succeed, but those who struggle become "mismatch" examples by that definition.

    Super selective colleges have the luxury of a deep enough applicant pool so that they need not admit high risk students, regardless of admission goals (e.g. "hooks") that may go counter to just taking the academically strongest applicants.
  • websensationwebsensation Registered User Posts: 1,785 Senior Member
    So the students knowingly went along in submitting “doctored” college applications? Is that fair to say? Or were they coerced to do this? What was the coercion?
  • websensationwebsensation Registered User Posts: 1,785 Senior Member
    edited December 2
    I am curious as to how this came to light? Someone must have talked to spur the investigation. Whether the enrolled students struggled or are doing well is not all that relevant imo because even at top colleges there are certain easy courses you can take, and isn't Brown a Pass or Fail option for 2 years?
  • Data10Data10 Registered User Posts: 2,483 Senior Member
    edited December 2
    So the students knowingly went along in submitting “doctored” college applications? Is that fair to say? Or were they coerced to do this? What was the coercion?
    According to the NYT article quotes below, it sounds like many students were aware of the "doctored" college applications and knowingly went along with it. However, Mr. Landry threatened to ruin their futures, including submitting transcript falsified in a negative way, if they didn't go along with the program. He also has physically threatened students.


    "Mr. Landry told students that he would ruin their futures if they left the school or told anyone what happened there, according to 20 current and former students interviewed and Terica Fuselier, a former teacher. They said that Mr. Landry threatened to alter or withhold their transcripts, or force them to enroll in a lower grade.

    Megan Malveaux, 16, said she believes she received a mediocre transcript from T.M. Landry because..."

    "A half-dozen current and former students said that Mr. Landry told them to lie on their college applications. In exchange for students’ loyalty, Mr. Landry produced glowing transcripts, including what several students said were high marks in advanced coursework they never took. "

    "Kelvin Simon said that when he found out the school wanted to submit a fraudulent transcript for his daughter’s application to Yale, he told Mr. Landry that he would not pay tuition until the school produced a real transcript. Mr. Landry refused,..."

  • collegemomjamcollegemomjam Registered User Posts: 1,573 Senior Member
    I am not surprised at all that this all came out. The behavior is so egregious, it was only a matter of time. Cheating always catches up with you. I definitely feel badly for the kids. Very interested in how this will be resolved.

    I seem to remember about 10-20 years ago, there was a male student at Yale that had doctored his own transcript and got away with it. He was a B student at Yale and quite comfortable academically, but then started bragging about what he did to some friends and word got out. Pretty sure he was expelled, and totally should have been.

    This whole thing makes me wonder if this happens incidentally in other cases. We will probably never know. I know that my kids' high school would NEVER falsify records, nor do I know any others that would. But I wonder if there are some applicants that might be able to figure out a way to do it? I'm thinking rarely if at all, but still makes me wonder.
  • OHMomof2OHMomof2 Registered User Posts: 11,945 Senior Member
    @websensation I am curious as to how this came to light? Someone must have talked to spur the investigation.

    I hope folks who are commenting on this read the article first? There are others besides the main NYTimes one if you have exhausted the free monthly quota of articles there. Yes, some families came forward.

    https://www.npr.org/2018/12/03/672817734/the-reality-of-t-m-landry-prep-a-school-in-small-town-louisiana (listen)

    or read: https://newrepublic.com/minutes/152478/fairytale-school-now-sounds-like-nightmarish-cult
  • OHMomof2OHMomof2 Registered User Posts: 11,945 Senior Member
    @collegemomjam This whole thing makes me wonder if this happens incidentally in other cases. We will probably never know. I know that my kids' high school would NEVER falsify records, nor do I know any others that would. But I wonder if there are some applicants that might be able to figure out a way to do it? I'm thinking rarely if at all, but still makes me wonder.

    Most schools have oversight at the local and state level that wouldn't allow this to happen. This school, Landry, was unaccredited and privately run. And the false transcripts were not produced by the students, but by the owner of the school. There is a process for sending transcripts from high school to college that bypasses the student for this reason - submitted via common app by counselor, mailed directly from school, etc. This assumes the school is honest, as most schools have an incentive to be.

    But here we have a cultish leader who abuses his students physically and emotionally, where parents see this and still think it's their kids' best shot because the other options for poor black kids in Louisiana are so awful - and that's if the parents even knew the level of abuse that was going on - he threatened students to keep them quiet. He threatened students who wouldn't write the kind of essay he wanted them to write. He withheld transcripts form students who left the school. He was personally enriching himself here as well - these students paid tuition and the better his school looked the more students and the more money he got.
  • collegemomjamcollegemomjam Registered User Posts: 1,573 Senior Member
    @OHMomof2 thanks. Yes, I already fully understood the process for sending transcripts, etc. I'm actually sickened by what has happened in that school.

    Your point about this still possibly being the best option for some poor black kids from Louisiana is perhaps the most important point of all and the more important point that this thread should address. The Landry case is disgusting and horrifying....but it definitely shouldn't be a factor in discussing the overall question of how race should be treated in college admissions. I hope people don't twist it around to somehow use it as an example of why race should NOT be a factor.
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