Tuition Assistance Program - Higher Education Services Corporation

 

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NYS Comptroller

THOMAS P. DiNAPOLI

Taxpayers' Guide to State and Local Audits

Tuition Assistance Program - Higher Education Services Corporation
DeVry College


Issued: April 06, 2015
Link to full audit report 2014-T-2

Purpose
To determine whether DeVry College of New York 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
Founded in 1931, DeVry University offers students onsite, online or blended educational options. It offers programs at more than 90 campuses throughout the United States. In New York, DeVry University operates as DeVry College of New York (DeVry) offering several programs leading to an associate’s or bachelor’s degree. TAP-eligible programs include business administration, accounting, computer technology and electronics. DeVry operates three campuses in New York – two in Manhattan and one in Queens. The school’s academic calendar comprises three 16-week semesters. Each semester consists of two eight-week sessions. Students pay tuition on a per-credit basis. For the 2014-15 academic year, tuition is $609 per credit hour for the first seven credits and $365 per credit hour for each additional credit in a session. As of September 30, 2014, there were 1,209 undergraduate students enrolled at DeVry’s New York campuses. TAP is an entitlement program designed to provide funds for paying tuition costs to eligible students. Schools receiving TAP payments certify student eligibility. For the three academic years ended June 30, 2013, the school certified 3,627 TAP awards totaling almost $6.4 million that were paid to the school on behalf of 1,689 students. We reviewed a sample of 100 randomly selected TAP awards paid during the three years ended June 30. 2013, as well as other awards to these students through spring 2014.

Key Findings

  • We determined that DeVry was overpaid $758,293 because school officials incorrectly certified students as eligible for TAP awards.
  • Incorrect certifications include 14 students who received awards but had not demonstrated their academic preparedness for TAP awards. Twelve of these students did not have certificates of graduation or the recognized equivalent of such a certificate, from a U.S. high school. The two other students had completed online study from a private school located in another state.
  • Additional incorrect certifications include four students who did not meet the full-time requirements and three students who were not in good academic standing.

Key Recommendations

  • The Higher Education Services Corporation should recover $758,293 plus applicable interest, from DeVry.
  • The State Education Department and the Higher Education Services Corporation should work with school officials to help ensure future compliance with the eligibility requirements cited in the report.  

Other Related Audits/Reports of Interest

Tuition Assistance Program - New York Career Institute (2013-T-1) 
Tuition Assistance Program - LaGuardia Community College (2013-T-4)
Tuition Assistance Program - Pratt Institute (2013-T-3)


State Government Accountability Contact Information:
Audit Director: Frank Patone
Phone: (212) 417-5200; 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