DeVry will reportedly be paying some of its students $49 million for its misleading ads. Among other requirements, students eligible for this refund have to have enrolled for the first time at the university between January of 2008 and October of 2015.
According to the “Federal Trade Commission’s” announcement on Wednesday, it will start mailing around 173,000 refund cheques, of a total of $49 million, to DeVry students in order to compensate them for the school’s misleading advertisements. The advertisements reportedly deceived many students about how likely they are to find jobs that are related to what they majored in. Each student will be receiving around $280 each.
Last year, DeVry as well as its parent company settled with the FTC for $100 million after they were sued by the “Federal Consumer Protection Agency” for its misleading ads. The school also agreed to forgive students of a total of $51 million in student debts.
According to the FTC complaint, DeVry “deceptively claimed that 90% of its graduates actively seeking employment landed jobs in their field within six months of graduation and that graduates had 15% higher incomes one year after graduation on average than the graduates of all other colleges or universities.”
Who Is Eligible for the Refund?
The students that are eligible for the refund cheque are the ones who first enrolled at DeVry between January in 2008 and October 2015 for either an associate’s or a bachelor’s degree program. They also had to have paid over $5000 in cash, military benefits or student loans. They also need to have completed more than one credit and also are required not to be among the students receiving “debt or loan forgiveness.” The cheques will remain valid for up to two months, or 60 days.
“Adtalem Global Edu Inc,” the company that owns DeVry as well as other schools, has also settled another lawsuit in January for $2.75 million filed by the Attorney General in New York about its ads. The lawsuit claimed that the university exaggerated its graduates’ success in getting jobs with high starting salaries in its advertisements.
The settlement required the company to pay $2.25m back to graduates who had started their associates or bachelors program at DeVry’s New York campuses between July of 2008 and September of 2015. The company also agreed to a $500,000 payment for penalties, costs and fees. However, the company never confirmed nor denied liability.