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College admissions cheating scandal: What happens to the students?



Coaches accused of fraudulently presenting potential students as athletes have been fired or dismissed by their universities and schools are reviewing their enrolled students to confirm that no one else was involved.

But it remains to be seen what will happen to the students themselves. According to the crime confirmation, some of the students were aware of cheating, but others had no idea.

Should students be expelled or allowed to continue school? What repercussions will they face, if any?

CNN spoke to two college assumptions experts and higher education law about the potential outcome of students whose parents pulled strings to get them to prestigious universities.

Here's what they had to say.

The fate of the students will be determined "from case to case"

Christine Helwick, the former Secretary General of the California State University system, said "there is no right solution" to the future of these students.

"It will have to be a definite thing," she said.

If a student was found to have been cheating on a degree such as SAT or lying on their application to the school, their fate would depend on where in the application process they were and whether they were already enrolled or graduated when the cheats were discovered, Helwick said.

If they were in the application process, the school could easily remove them. At least two universities have said they will deny students' assumptions if they are connected to the scandal.

If they already have a degree, Helwick said she doubted that a school would withdraw a degree.

Universities are facing the most difficult decisions for students who are still enrolled, Helwick said, and said the schools were looking at whether these students were aware of cheating or whether their parents were behind the student's back.

Ed Boland, a former Yale University admissions officer and author of his memoir, "The Battle for Room 31

4", agreed and said that a school's dean of students would likely initiate an investigation to investigate whether the student was aware of cheating – and if so, whether the student was complicated in the process.

Those who knew should be faced with expulsion, says expert

According to the crime statement, not all students were aware of the cheating their parents arranged. Currently, no students are facing the scandal.

Two students who say they were aware are the daughters of Elizabeth and Manuel Henriquez, who are accused of paying hundreds of thousands of dollars and benefiting as part of the bluff. Affidavit says their daughters actively participated. CNN has reached out to Henriquezes for comment.

According to the statement, a proctor, who had been paid to sit at Henriqueze's eldest daughter's side and give an answer during the test, was "gloated" with her and her mother "about the fact that they had been deceived and gone with it."

  Stanford students are handling court proceedings against college submission scandals

In the case of students who were complex in the cheating company, Boland said that such behavior entitles to "immediate expulsion", and to add universities must show everyone that they do not tolerate the scamming admission process.

"This scandal undermines the public's belief in this process," he said, "and schools must act fast and fast to show the public that they are as worried as the public is".

Asked if it was credible that some students did not know about cheating, Boland said he thought it was. If fewer people were on the process, he said it would be easier to control.

According to the statement, a student who had been admitted to the University of Southern California as a trace satellite was unaware of the arrangement and was surprised when his adviser asked him for directions on orientation.

Boland also pointed out that many students would not want to "take advantage of this despite their parents' wishes".

Helwick did not necessarily agree and pointed out that the alleged bluff involved cheating on SAT or ACTs, or was presented as a prospective athlete for a team they did not intend to play on.

"It's hard to imagine that a student would not be knowledgeable about any of them," she said.

Would they get another chance?

Both Helwick and Boland indicated that students could have a chance of redemption, depending on their case.

Some schools may be willing to see if the current students have so far proven whether they could stand at the institution on their own, Helwick said they would decide whether to stay.

"How far have they evolved?" she asked. "How good have they done? Have they shown that they could really do the same with someone who came in under normal circumstances?"

  What we know so far in college admissions cheating scandal

Otherwise, a student might be asked to leave university and attending another institution to prove their academic abilities on their own, Boland said, which is "a very common practice", often for a student who may have failed or partied too much and did not take his education seriously enough.

And, Helwick said, "Community colleges are available to all kinds of people."

CNN's Melanie Schuman and Mark Morales contributed to this report.


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