Tuition Assistance Program - Higher Education Services Corporation

 

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Office of the New York State Comptroller

Taxpayers' Guide to State and Local Audits

Tuition Assistance Program - Higher Education Services Corporation
Touro College (Issued 5/30/12)


Purpose
To determine whether Touro College management complied with the Education Law and the Commissioner of Education's Rules and Regulations when certifying students for State-funded Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) awards.

Background
Touro is a private college offering a variety of undergraduate and graduate degree programs in education, business, health sciences and information systems. The school's current enrollment is approximately 17,500 students, many of whom attend classes at various locations throughout Manhattan. TAP is an entitlement program designed to provide funds to cover tuition costs for eligible students. Schools receiving TAP payments must certify student eligibility. For the three academic years ended June 30, 2006, Touro certified almost 30,000 TAP awards totaling $54 million. We reviewed a random sample of 200 TAP awards from that period, as well as other awards outside the three-year period that came to our attention during the audit.

Key Findings

  • We determined that Touro was overpaid $313,665 because school officials incorrectly certified students as eligible for TAP awards.
  • Touro’s records did not demonstrate that four students met the minimum educational requirements for enrolment; two of whom had graduated from foreign high schools and two others from private schools not approved by the State Education Department.
  • Touro also certified one other student for a seventh TAP award, although eligibility under the student’s associate’s degree program is limited to six terms.

Key Recommendations

  • The Higher Education Services Corporation should recover $313,665 plus applicable interest, from Touro for its incorrect TAP certifications.
  • The State Education Department should ensure that Touro officials comply with State Education Department requirements relating to matriculation cited in report.

Link to full audit report (2010-T-1)

Other Related Audits/Reports of Interest

Higher Education Services Corporation: TAP Berkeley College (Manhattan Campuses) Report 2010-T-2
Higher Education Services Corporation: TAP Professional Business College Report 2010-T-3


State Government Accountability Contact Information:
Audit Director: John Buyce
Phone:(518) 474-3271; Email: StateGovernmentAccountability@osc.state.ny.us
Address: Office of the State Comptroller; Division of State Government Accountability; 110 State Street, 11th Floor; Albany, NY 12236