Complaint Review

B.C.T.I. (Business Computers Training Institue)

Report: #65910

Submitted:
Mon, August 18, 2003
Updated:
Thu, March 24, 2005
Reported By:

Renton Washington
Name:
B.C.T.I. (Business Computers Training Institue)
Address:
6659 Kimball Dr Suite A101 Gig Harbor, Washington U.S.A. Phone:
800-752-2284
Category:
Adult Career & Continuing Education

B.C.T.I. (Business Computers Training Institue) Unethical, immoral and unsafe business rip off Gig Harbor Washington

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Hounding for placement numbers

*Consumer Comment: Responce to Mike from Melissa helping what students you could with the resources that you had

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Advice to for Melissa

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Another Ex-Employee Outside of the "VP Circle"

*Consumer Comment: Not all students were fresh out of jail or drug abusers

*Consumer Comment: Ex-student that sued at the right time.

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Jim B. is right real leadership, no skills whatsoever.

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: One of many ex employees of BCTI. BCTI has always had a terrible turn over rate for employees. The school uses up and abuses it's employees.

*Consumer Comment: BCTI Rip off School

*Consumer Comment: As an EX-Student of BCTI there are a lot of improvements and also some very disturbing things that occured during my training at BCTI.

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: My Two Cents

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: For Karen

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: BCTI Admissions

*Author of original report: where I received my numbers from? I counted while I was there

*Author of original report: where I received my numbers from? I counted while I was there

*Author of original report: where I received my numbers from? I counted while I was there

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Hello bitter party of 52

*UPDATE Employee: Until you step aside and realize what is really important to Tom and Morrie, you will not see the company for what it really is

*Consumer Comment: Why is it ...

*UPDATE Employee: Wow Ken...

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Wow someone is bitter

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: READING COMPREHENSION 101 - KEN

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Ken I don't think you get it

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: My Gosh Barbara... BCTI's mission is to change the lives of people who didn't make it anywhere else

*Author of original report: Reply to Dean, how can you make statements that you know are false?

*UPDATE Employee: I work for, but don't trust BCTI ..As an insider, I do not think that anything BCTI does is illegal, however it is unethical.

*UPDATE Employee: I work for, but don't trust BCTI ..As an insider, I do not think that anything BCTI does is illegal, however it is unethical.

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: You're Right Jack! I accept responsibility for my insubordination and tardiness

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Message for "Jack"

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Barbara and Pelsor Traitor

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Your help is needed, The Washington Workforce Training and Education Coordinating Board is also investigating all of the Washington schools

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Everything they are saying is TRUE and more! part of the lay off

*UPDATE Employee: Call us BCTI

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Give it some more time Mark

*UPDATE Employee: A NON-disgruntled employee comment ..Sure, SOME students are from the backgrounds he mentioned


BCTI is a post secondary computer education facility that advertises entry level training for office skills and the IT field along with the soft skills needed to apply and maintain a job. The population that BCTI targets for their schools are people coming out of prison/jail, coming out of drug/alcohol programs, the mentally disabled and people so down on their luck that they are very venerable to high pressure sales tactics.

The cost of both Phase I and Phase II of their program is $16,000.00 and to get into Phase II, all students, no matter what their skill level, must attend all of Phase I. The schools sales staff lies to prospective students telling them they will achieve their A+ and Network + certifications, that they will be hired immediately upon graduation, that they receive more books and tools than what is actually provided, are told things that the course or programs do not support or provide and many other untruths that the instructors have to put up with.

According to BCTI, their training will prepare the students for the office or IT fields. I as an employer would maybe hire less that 1% of their total graduates because of anger management issues with the students, attendance issues, personality issues, learning issues and overall poor curriculum issues. BCTI has such a poor reputation that most employers will not hire graduating students. There are those 1% of exceptional students but they are rare.

As an employee of BCTI, things are much worse than what the students have to put up with. At one site in a year and a half, there has been 6 day time Director of Instructions and 3 evening Director of Instructions, 2 Executive Site Directors and over 40 instructors and staff. Instructors are forced to push people through the program even though they cannot pass tests, assignments or labs, have poor attendance and are very disruptive to the educational process.

Instructors and staff have been physically assaulted or threatened, sexually harassed and the students have been allowed to remained in school and finish the program with the instructors and staff being told to put up with the treatment as the students pay their salary. One instructor just terminated their employment because a student came across her table and grabbed her by the throat, and the school did noting to the student. Instructors and staff have been fired for unjust causes then BCTI tries to deny unemployment benefits by lying to the Employment Security Department of the unemployment division.

Instructors and staff are constantly berated, browbeat, disrespected, harassed and abused by the companys management. Staff and instructors have been accused of things and there has been no investigation or communications on the part of management. The schools management personnel always throw the ACCERT accreditation at the instructors and staff but that is a joke as ACCERT is a private organization and to have their certification, you have to pay them regardless of what actually takes place in the curriculum.

One instructor was fired because he asked for a wage in accordance with his education and experience for a job that was not his or in his job description and the site Director of Instruction fired him stating insubordination and misconduct. The instructor had the right to ask for the wage as the job that he was asked to perform was the responsibility of the companys system department.
All of Washington States government agencies know about the border line illegal practices of BCTI, but no one will do anything about them.

Students are being ripped off because the curriculum does not prepare them for the real world or prepares them for the certifications programs. The students have to perform massive study on their own time to be able to pass the certification exams. I feel sorry for these students as most of them do not have the mental capacity to understand they are being ripped off. BCTI stations sales people at the area malls and targets the disadvantage. They also send people to facilities like out patient mental facilities, drug/alcohol buildings, and other such facilities where they can get their foot into.

Most of the students or staff does not have the money to pursue legal action against BCTI and that is why they continue to get away with the things they do. Something needs to be done to stop their way of business and to pay restitution to the students and staff that have been ripped off.

Mark
Renton, Washington
U.S.A.

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 08/18/2003 05:43 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/BCTI-Business-Computers-Training-Institue/Gig-Harbor-Washington-98335/BCTI-Business-Computers-Training-Institue-Unethical-immoral-and-unsafe-business-rip-65910. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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#1 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Hounding for placement numbers

AUTHOR: Mike - (U.S.A.)

Melissa,

Those calls to your employer were likely to get what was called an Employment Verification Form. It is one of guises that BCTI used to help it appear that placements were legitimate to the accredidation company. You might have been asked for a "skills statement" as well, where you would be sent a pre-written note (maybe they asked you to write it) where you would sign saying what skills you used in your job.....keep in mind that operating an electronic cash register in Taco Bell was 'data entry'. (There has to be someone on this site that has a good story about a skills statement)

I recall some memorable 'placements' in Taco Bell, a doughnut shop, Little Ceasars Pizza, Chevron Gas stations, Wal-Mart, various call centers, and not to mention all those placed as 'self-employed'. But, it sounds like to did get a position in your field of interest, good for you.

In defense of the career service departments that did this.....they had to endure, as Mike in Bothel so accurately put it,....Katherine Owens cackle and fingers-across-the-chalkboard voice riding them about placements and Phase 2 enrollments. This woman would probably squeeze the life out of a newborn kitten to get one more enrollment.
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#2 Consumer Comment

Responce to Mike from Melissa helping what students you could with the resources that you had

AUTHOR: Melissa - (U.S.A.)

Mike,
I just wanted to say that I appreciate your advise and am sure you did a wonderful job at BCTI, helping what students you could with the resources that you had. I am sure it is hard to find students jobs with so many unemployed people (in Washington)(I am not sure about Oregon).

I respect your opinion on the situation and your right, I am sure that no one here in little ol Alabama will even know who BCTI is or their reputation, but I guess I feel extremly decieved by them and wish to have nothing to do with them or their company name (because their name on my resume makes them look good, not me).

I do not or would not ever bad mouth BCTI to an employer or even to a client because your right, that just would make me look bad. As a matter a fact, I never mentioned BCTI at all at my current jobs interview (that is my point). My current job as an Administrative Assistant and Search Engine Position and Optimization Expert, had nothing to do with BCTI or the education I recieved there.

I learned what I learned at this job from experience and lots of reading. I got hired for my ability and want to learn new things. I benifit from my job and my employer benifits from the job I do and that has NOTHING to do with BCTI or the 22,000.00 dollar dept they left me in.

As a matter a fact, letting BCTI know that I had a job were I do was the biggest mistake I could have made. They kept calling harrassing my boss after he told them not to call here again asking about his employees. I believe they were trying to get him to say that I got the job through them instead of on my own merit. He had never even read their letter of recomendation or anything about the AFTER traits or even called them as a reference. He just looked at my interest in this company and knew I would be an asset.

So I do have a point to all this babbling and it is this. I have to pay 22,000 dollars to the government, being a single one income mom, for however long it takes to pay off, only for something I could have taught myself by reading a book for 20.00 or listened to someone that doesn't know me tell me I could do anything I want. And no matter what I do or how much I use my brain in a day, I will always feel like a fool for getting blinded in the way I have been blinded by BCTI. That is why I am angry (not only at BCTI but at myself for believing in them and what I thought they stood for).
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#3 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Advice to for Melissa

AUTHOR: Mike - (U.S.A.)

Melissa,

As one of the former CS person (and a good one at that), I can offer you this advice...

You can/SHOULD still put BCTI on your resume and use any recommendation letters/awards.

Despite all that has come out about BCTI and their closure:
YOU: still had great attendance and should have awards to show for that.
YOU: did well academically and should have awards to show for that.
YOU: devoted 15 months of your time to improve yourself and education.
YOU: did all that you could to get the most out of the program, despite other peoples experiences.

The fact that you did these things, shows CHARACTER, and if you learned from the AFTER traits, you know that is far more important than any specific technical skills.

So the school had issues and was deceptive,.....that was the BCTI, not you.
So, don't bad-mouth BCTI in an interview (would reflect poorly on you), talk about what you learned and any personal growth that came from it.

Good Luck-
PS-It is unlikely an employer will ask (or even know) about BCTI..., but if it does come up... Don't go into any negatives, just say talk about positives at your campus at the time you were there.
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#4 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Another Ex-Employee Outside of the "VP Circle"

AUTHOR: Mike - (U.S.A.)

I too am an ex-employee from the Everett campus, and had the displeasure of working for Catherine and having Lori Boe as my supervisor (although in a different capacity.) I was a "Career Specialist" who's job it was to find employment for graduating and already-graduated students.

At least that's what my job WAS - within two weeks of starting there, they fired the Phase II admissions rep and gave that job to us. No pay increase, of course, just another quota to use against us when they were ready to let us go when they'd squeezed as much lifeblood out of us as they could.

I remember the variety of clients the school had - some were just poor schlubs who'd been laid off from Boeing, others were one step away from being homeless, a few I was genuinely concerned would show up one day with a firearm.

Like many others who worked there, I tried my best to help the students who seemed capable of obtaining meaningful employment and actually wanted help, but was constantly being threatened with the numbers which were completely unachievable.

Then, on top of that, having to sell students on the notion of dropping another $7,000 on the second phase of a program which promised far more than it could deliver.

Jim, I think I remember you... My name is Mike, and I worked in Everett between 2001-2002. When I started there, I worked with a guy named Craig, who I think quit, but stayed on as a part-time instructor. Most of the time I worked with Jeremy, who had come up from Renton. Your comments about Catherine are, if anything, a major understatement.

I do not believe I have met anyone more two-faced and disingenuous in my life. That cackle and fingernail-across-the-chalkboard voice haunt me to this day. Most of the higher-ups were hypocritical bean-counters, but she took the cake. (By the way, was it just me, or does she bear a striking resemblance to Lady Elaine from Mister Rogers Neighborhood?)

But back to the subject at hand... I think the core of the problem was that BCTI was a for-profit company trying to pass itself off as an altruistic organization. You can't have people try to help you when you're down and out who are trying to make a buck off you at the same time... It's like having a car salesman help you decide on the best car to buy. It's simply a major conflict of interest.
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#5 Consumer Comment

Not all students were fresh out of jail or drug abusers

AUTHOR: Melissa - (U.S.A.)

I want to start by saying I blame no instructors for what I can only call a rip off scam of the lowest kind. I think a lot of people here are missing the point.

BCTI made lots of promises that there was no way they could keep (especially with the unemployment rate in Washington after Boeing layoffs).

They knew this while continueing to enroll students that had and would have no way to possibly repay these depts that are now incurred.

The part that really burns me bad is that I worked my butt off at BCTI, doing everything I was suppose to do, my attendance was above 95% the entire 15 months I went there as well as my accademics. But for what, nothing.

Yes certain skills were attained and self confidence was boosted, but now I can't even use the letter of recomendation given or even put BCTI on my resume so really it it like I had no schooling at all.

So in the end, I can't use BCTI as a reference due to their tarnished reputation (which in turn tarnishes mine as a valuable employee)and I can't tell employers that I have had any schooling what so ever because how do the employers know that my records didn't get fudged.

So basically I spent $22,000.00 to have my reputation as a valuable employee tarnished and waste 15 months of time I could have been recieving a degree for less money. I would advise anyone and everyone against BCTI but fortunatly I don't have to because they are finally going down.
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#6 Consumer Comment

Ex-student that sued at the right time.

AUTHOR: Brandee - (U.S.A.)

I am an ex-student of BCTI and I finished both phases August 2001. I would just like to say hello to Jim Bennett you were one of my instructor's during this time and I have to agree with everything you said. As a student I felt totally ripped off. I decided to go to BCTI because I needed decent job skills so that my husband and I could provide a better life for our children. I spent a total of 15 mos. away from my husband and children for nothing. I am not an ex-convict nor am I an ex-drug user. I worked very hard to do the best that I could in all areas in class. I had almost perfect attendance and perfect grades. When it came time to breakdown and take the a+ certification test I studied day and night, when I went in to take the test there was nothing on that test that I had studied in class at BCTI. I failed miserably to say the least. When I finally graduated and started having trouble finding jobs (something I was promised that I wouldn't have a problem with) I went to BCTI for help and they started helping me find jobs in fast food places or other areas that had nothing to do with computer training. I was also, forced to sign a form saying I was using skills that I acquired at BCTI in my new job even though I never came close to using those skills. I just thank god that a few fellow students and I got together and took care of the problem legally before they closed their doors completly. I can't go into anymore details on that due to a gag order. Thank you

Forced to remain anonymous
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#7 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Jim B. is right real leadership, no skills whatsoever.

AUTHOR: Mike - (U.S.A.)

Jim,

I too had the pleasure of working w/ the lady VP's, including Katherine O. Her and Margaret, what a pair. Both very good at saying how we have to put in that extra effort this (every)quarter, as far as providing any real leadership, no skills whatsoever.

As for as BCTI always being poor, that is hard to imagine. So they get 10K per student per phase. Where does all that cash go? It doesn't go to staff salary, I think pretty much all of the employees that I worked with complained about the lack of any pay/merit/cost of living increases. That money definately does not go into the computers. Mine, and the ones in the "resource room" were all the old original Pentium chips from the early 1990s (out-dated computers at a computer training school?). Classroom computers were just those cheap Winterm boxes - not even real computers. The money did not go into facilities, our carpet was repaired with duct tape.

I loved my campus and most of the staff (because they really cared and did what they could to genuinely help students) - but the VPs and the ASC?..Worthless! The success that BCTI had was inspite of its leadership, not because of it. Good staff made alot of sacrifices and really supported students, Leadership paid no attention to this and only saw the enrollment & retenion numbers (often completely out of staff's control). And even in that focus, Leadership never had any constructive advice or provided useful assistance.

For now their doors are closed. And no doubt the owners Tom and Morrie have many dollars in their pockets.....and students/staff are out in the cold. God bless Darcie Pelsor for having the heart to contact the State of Oregon and ACCET and let them know about BCTI.
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#8 UPDATE EX-employee responds

One of many ex employees of BCTI. BCTI has always had a terrible turn over rate for employees. The school uses up and abuses it's employees.

AUTHOR: Jim - (U.S.A.)

My name is Jim Bennett and I am sure that many of you know me from my time as an Instructor at the Everett, WA campus.

I used to be an Instructor of Phase II at the Everett campus back in 2001.

BCTI has always had a terrible turn over rate for employees. The school uses up and abuses it's employees and then spits them out for replacememts when the last drop has been squeezed out. This mistreatment was done by a few at the top in the Marketing and Director levels.

They will get rid of you if they think that you have a mind of your own, expecially if you are a man. You are never to voice a concern about the way things are there.

I had received a near perfect score on my evaluation by Lori Boe who was my supervisor, only to be demoted into Admissions a few months later because the school could not afford to keep me as a full time Instructor. I hated being in Admissions, but they wanted me there to help get students excited about the Phase II program. The Sales Management was very unprofessional on so many levels.

As an Admissions Rep for the Advanced portion of the school's 2-year program, I was alarmed to find that Catherine (the least genuine person I have ever met) decided that I did not need a computer to do my job. I was expected to use markers on erasable wall boards in several offices to show class progress and to share other information. I offered to setup online Microsoft Office collaboration so that we could use MS Office and share our calendars and other info out to each other, but none of the ALL WOMEN leadership circle knew how to use Office and/or the Internet. That should be an indicator that something was seriously wrong. A school selling the promise of technical skills refused to use the tools that they were supposed to be teaching because it was to hard for them to figure out.

The Sales and Marketing people were more like used car salespeople than Admissions Reps. They fostered that kind of environment.

I made it known that I did not agree with many of the things that I saw there and I wanted to make it better, but Catherine would not have someone around who did not agree with her ideas completely and with humility.

I don't know about you, but I earn the respect that others have for me. I don't use my job to make others respect me for fear of losing their jobs.

Very few leaders at BCTI were men, unless they were complete doormats. You had to be totally submissive to Catherine and the women in her inner circle, or you were gone...

They asked me to go back as an Instructor again last year and they offered me the same starting pay that I got when I started in 2001. I never got a raise back then and they thought I would go back for the same starting pay years later. I told them that I could not take the position because the school showed far too much instability. Mindy (the Director) agreed with me and said they all live with that each day.

I will say that outside of Catherine's inner circle, nearly all of the other people that I ever worked with there were really great and I am still friends with many that I worked with there. I even stayed in touch with some of the students that I thought back then. The school shuffles employees around so often trying to save a few bucks that there was no way students could ever get a consistent education.

Even in 2001, I was told that we could not order PENS because the school could not afford it.

Good luck to all of the students and to the "good" employees that have been left in the dust of BCTI's sudden, but expected demise.

Jim Bennett
Marysville, WA
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#9 Consumer Comment

BCTI Rip off School

AUTHOR: Jodie - (U.S.A.)

My husband and I are Alumni Students of BCTI. We started BCTI in 2001. We had investigated many schools who taught computers and found what we thought to be a "great school" in BCTI.

We were told that by the end of our first phase we would have our A+ certification. Boy were we wrong. In fact all we ended up receiving was a "Certification of Completion".

I do find the first comment on your page to be very wrong. My husband and I aren't down and out on our luck and we aren't stupid, naive individuals. In fact, after our three weeks into BCTI course we realized their was in fact a problem. So we started questioning BCTI's Staff and Executive's.

I personally was bullied by all of the staff at BCTI. When I would open my mouth they would be right their with some lame excuse of why we were lied too. The Executive Director in fact told my husband and I we weren't lied to that we were just idiots that didn't listen to the sales associate. We were promised so many thing's that never happend. Now we have loans over $40,000.00 owing to a private financial institute.

I have not paid on these loans and I will not pay on these loans. We were not given the proper education that we were promised.

They tried to keep me from graduating from BCTI but I threatened to go to the newspapers and they didn't want bad publicity. So I finally graduated from BCTI. Woopie. How exciting! I recieved my "Certificate of Completion" which is a huge joke.

My husband being in the commercial construction field and being upper management really got burned. I did find a job after BCTI but I found this on my own accord. They promised me they would find me a job and in fact they didn't I had to find my own job. But to keep from having them continually harrass me day and night I had to say they found me my job. Which remember they didn't find me my job.

Both my husband and myself are by far stupid people. My husband has a BA in Construction management. But BCTI staff are so great at making you think you are getting something you aren't.

I remember the fifth week into our program when one of the students used to sexually harrass me and finally brought a gun to school and threatened to kill us all. BCTI let him continue to be in our program until our whole class stood up and said "Enough is enough"! My class was probably the hardest class because we questioned everything. We scared BCTI.

Anyhow we are very happy that BCTI is finally being investigated for lying and if anyone needs us to write an afidavid about our experience and how we were lied too we would be more then happy too.
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#10 Consumer Comment

As an EX-Student of BCTI there are a lot of improvements and also some very disturbing things that occured during my training at BCTI.

AUTHOR: Mike - (U.S.A.)

Most of the instructors were helpful but in my case I know of some instances that were not good business practices. for instance my attendance reports were modified to allow for graduation and also the assignment grading was rather flexible. In fact my actual attendance was less than 50% but somehow I managed to graduate and in PP5 I would guess that maybe 30% of my assignments were actually turned in. Yet I still graduated and moved on to Phase II. Now isn't that illegal or at least immoral? There were students that were working their behinds off to graduate and my graduation was basically handed to me. The funny thing is that I attended BCTI to get out of the job that I had, and guess what after being gone from my job for 15 months I am back at the same job again. I basically wasted my time and my money to attend. BCTI is good for young people just out of High School and looking for an entry level job, because that is the only employment that is available for the graduate. I enjoyed the staff while I was there but the business practices behind the scenes were what I would expect from any telemarketing scheme.
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#11 UPDATE EX-employee responds

My Two Cents

AUTHOR: Chuck - (U.S.A.)

I stumbled across this posting on a fluke, looking for something else. I've found it to be quite an interesting read. I know several of the people who have posted here, and have basically received an education about them. I just wanted to share a few thoughts, for what it's worth.

First and foremost, I'm simply amazed at some of the grammar that I've seen in this post. I make no claims to perfect grammar; you may find an error or two here also. What shocked me is that I didn't see that in my co-workers while I worked there.

I left BCTI on my own. I had a job opportunity that would pay me about 3 times what I was making there, so I left on good terms. I don't feel any dedication towards the place, nor do I have any particular resentment either. It was a job, something to help pay the bills and fill the void until I was able to find something more suitable. Aside from being promised a full-time position forever, and never getting it, I was treated fairly for the most part.

Having said that, I still feel compelled to be truthful and honest. I did speak, at length, with the reporter from The Oregonian. I was, however, objective during the interview. I expressed my feelings and opinions without the intent of bad-mouthing.

It made me feel good that there was some sort of investigation occurring. That doesn't mean that I feel that BCTI is operating illegally, just that if there is something wrong, it will maybe get fixed.

There were pros and cons with working there, just like any other job. I was proud to be in a position where I could have a positive impact, helping people who had never been successful at anything. I think that's part of what makes being a teacher so rewarding. Teaching PP1, I loved watching students' confidence levels and self-esteem grow. And watching them graduate, especially when being honored by being asked to speak at their graduation ceremony, did a lot for my self esteem also.

Remembering the mission statement, "BCTI is in the BUSINESS.....". I don't think that there was ever a mission statement written more honestly...at least up to that word. Its a business, with the goal of making money for the founders. They're going to do everything that they can to make their business profitable, just like anyone else. To that end, what was expected of the instructor staff was in line with that objective. Although my retention rating was higher than that of those who proceded me, I still loathed it. I was appalled at the fact that my main focus as an instructor was to bring the student back the next day; my secondary focus was the learning I was tasked to oversee. I hated that I was expected to call any student who wasn't in class. I always felt that attention in that direction took away from those who were there. Sure, they were busy with their daily beginning of class 15 minute "instructor has to make phone calls" diversion, but I felt that my time would have better been spent preparing to do the best job that I could for those who had bothered to show up.

And retention ratings. I had things held against me that were well outside of my (AND the students') control. One student didn't go on to PP2 because he was hit by a car. That was held against me. Another one made it to the last day, decided life back at home with her parents (in another state) was better than with a drug abusing, violent boyfriend, and never sat in PP2. Once again, I wasn't doing what I was supposed to do. Yet another was hospitalized after her boyfriend pushed her down a flight of stairs. She lost her baby. I lost points. No winners here.

Let's face it. BCTI markets to people who are closer to down-and-out. That's why they have marketing hit places like DSHS and local food banks. They seem to be easy prey to quick talking salespeople who put visions of sugarplums in their heads. They're vulnerable, down on their luck, and are ready to believe that their whole world can change for $420. Pretty sad actually.

As if all of this was not challenge enough for an instructor, along comes the dreaded Day Seven. It's good in that it's the end of what I considered the most challenging part of the job. It was the last day that I could expect a new student, since I typically got a new one most every day up to that point. Sometimes that was no big deal, on the rare occasion that the new student knew how to turn on a computer. More often than not, I had fought to bring the whole class to a fairly even keel on the very basics of logging on, when along comes someone who doesn't know a monitor from a mouse. And then came the moment that I dreaded more than any other. The staff marches in, boom-box in tow, to lead the class in celebration, encouraging the students to do the "Macarena". My lack of participation in this little dance was looked at as being "non-team". (I saw it more as non-coordination...I abstained rather than look like an idiot). Did they not see that those who never returned after that day felt the same as me? One student had their first AND last day on Day 7. Sad.

I love all the dirt here. BCTI is such a closed book in regards to what's going on with whom, at least where their employees (or former employees) are concerned. My last visit to the Everett campus revealed an amazing change in staff there, and I have to be honest in saying that I'm really curious about what happened. What happened to Loyal? To Jim? To Karen? etc., etc., etc.
(If you should read this Karen, I'd love to hear from you. Working with you there was a true highlight...your best friend has my number.)
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#12 UPDATE EX-employee responds

For Karen

AUTHOR: Darcie - (U.S.A.)

Actually Karen I don't want them to get shut down, I just want them to abide by the rules set in place by the Department of Education (DOE). While I was still employed I talked to every person I could to which I received no help or common concern. I spoke to three DIs, an ED, my fellow instructors and nothing happened. I then contacted ASSET. Still nothing happened. It was at that point that I gave up trying to get them to correct their behavior, and decided that the DOE might help them get their act together. I never called the paper. They called me after running across the report at the DOE, which is public record. I played fair. BCTI is in violation of several rules, I am acting as an advocate for those who can not look out for their own best interests, and if you were an instructor with a student in your class who couldn't even remember your name, let alone how to log onto a computer after 100 class days, I hope that you would have done the same thing.
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#13 UPDATE EX-employee responds

BCTI Admissions

AUTHOR: Rebecca - (U.S.A.)

I was an Admissions Rep for the Beaverton BCTI for almost 4 years. I worked with Barbara and she was an excellent instuctor who took her job and her responcibility to the students seriously. Her students learned a lot. She didn't just pass them through like a lot of the other instructors.

When I first began my job with BCTI, I believed their mission statement and thought I was a small part of a wonderful orginization. I was wrong. As an Admissions Rep. I was outstanding at my job. I had a wall full of awards and won 90% of the BCTI enrollment contests. As a staff member of BCTI I took won many customer service awards, a rarity for an Admissions person.
Then something clicked. I realized that I was not helping most of these students. I was taking advantage of the fact that they were at a disadvantage. Many of the students sent to me by the marketing department had acute learning and mental disabilities. Many had trouble functioning in society.

The final straw was when I was sent a man who thought he was Elvis Presley. He did not understand that he was looking into career training, he thought he was there to audition for a gig. When I went to my Director to voice my concerns, I was told to tell him that to get the gig, he just needed to sign some paperwork. When I refused to enroll this man I was fired that same day.

When I applied for unemployment benefits BCTI stated that I had been fired for insubordination. When I threatened legal action BCTI allowed for me to get unemployment.

The management of BCTI have no regard for the students, staff or instructors. All they care about is profit. I don't have a problem with them wanting to make a large profit, but I do have a problem with them taking advantage of the down and out.
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#14 Author of original report

where I received my numbers from? I counted while I was there

AUTHOR: Mark - (U.S.A.)

For all of you who have made a rebuttal to my original comment and asked where I received my numbers from? I counted while I was there; I kept records as I was taught in the military to provide in any situation. If my numbers are not correct, then prove me wrong! Do you have the correct numbers of how many people were fired or quit at the South Center campus from March of 2002 to July of 2003? Do you have the exact percentage of the total number of students who graduated from BCTI's Phase II program who have successfully found a job in the IT field and have maintained those jobs in this same time period? About my termination, you do not know the exact details of what when on and what took place in the unemployment denial and appeals. How can asking for a fair wage for a job that is not in your job description constitute insubordination? Can you prove that I and other instructors and staff were not physically and verbally abused and threatened? Until you can provide me proof of all these numbers and facts, please keep your comments to what has taken place with you and your experience and at your site. Each site and individual are different.

For Karen: I do accept responsibility for my actions and what I was teaching. Because of my caring, striving for the betterment of the students and updating the curriculum, this is why I was terminated so do not preach to me about ethics, caring and looking for only the good as you too worked for BCTI, you too came to this site and you too were terminated by BCTI. And excuse me for misspelling ACCET and if you visit their web site, you can see what they really are. Yes I was happy the day I left but like many others, BCTI continued to be the unethical, misrepresentation and lying institution that they are. I too worked for Katherine Owen as she was one of the two Site Director's I had in my 16 months with BCTI and she was re-assigned to Corporate Headquarters because of her behavior and I know the dirt on her and why they took the Tacoma campus away from her. On your comment about signing the employee hand book; according to the company and state labor laws, an employee hand book is not a contract or a right to work form or any thing else other than company policies. Signing the book only indicates that you read them and are aware of the company policies. I too lost out on my vacation but who cares?

Why was a Director of Instruction fired right after I sent proof to BCTI that he lied to the unemployment office about things he said in the appeal process? Why have I run into so many former students who do not work in the Information Technology area who graduated from Phase II? One of these students is a janitor for Target. Why is there a state and federal investigation into how BCTI operates?
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#15 Author of original report

where I received my numbers from? I counted while I was there

AUTHOR: Mark - (U.S.A.)

For all of you who have made a rebuttal to my original comment and asked where I received my numbers from? I counted while I was there; I kept records as I was taught in the military to provide in any situation. If my numbers are not correct, then prove me wrong! Do you have the correct numbers of how many people were fired or quit at the South Center campus from March of 2002 to July of 2003? Do you have the exact percentage of the total number of students who graduated from BCTI's Phase II program who have successfully found a job in the IT field and have maintained those jobs in this same time period? About my termination, you do not know the exact details of what when on and what took place in the unemployment denial and appeals. How can asking for a fair wage for a job that is not in your job description constitute insubordination? Can you prove that I and other instructors and staff were not physically and verbally abused and threatened? Until you can provide me proof of all these numbers and facts, please keep your comments to what has taken place with you and your experience and at your site. Each site and individual are different.

For Karen: I do accept responsibility for my actions and what I was teaching. Because of my caring, striving for the betterment of the students and updating the curriculum, this is why I was terminated so do not preach to me about ethics, caring and looking for only the good as you too worked for BCTI, you too came to this site and you too were terminated by BCTI. And excuse me for misspelling ACCET and if you visit their web site, you can see what they really are. Yes I was happy the day I left but like many others, BCTI continued to be the unethical, misrepresentation and lying institution that they are. I too worked for Katherine Owen as she was one of the two Site Director's I had in my 16 months with BCTI and she was re-assigned to Corporate Headquarters because of her behavior and I know the dirt on her and why they took the Tacoma campus away from her. On your comment about signing the employee hand book; according to the company and state labor laws, an employee hand book is not a contract or a right to work form or any thing else other than company policies. Signing the book only indicates that you read them and are aware of the company policies. I too lost out on my vacation but who cares?

Why was a Director of Instruction fired right after I sent proof to BCTI that he lied to the unemployment office about things he said in the appeal process? Why have I run into so many former students who do not work in the Information Technology area who graduated from Phase II? One of these students is a janitor for Target. Why is there a state and federal investigation into how BCTI operates?
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#16 Author of original report

where I received my numbers from? I counted while I was there

AUTHOR: Mark - (U.S.A.)

For all of you who have made a rebuttal to my original comment and asked where I received my numbers from? I counted while I was there; I kept records as I was taught in the military to provide in any situation. If my numbers are not correct, then prove me wrong! Do you have the correct numbers of how many people were fired or quit at the South Center campus from March of 2002 to July of 2003? Do you have the exact percentage of the total number of students who graduated from BCTI's Phase II program who have successfully found a job in the IT field and have maintained those jobs in this same time period? About my termination, you do not know the exact details of what when on and what took place in the unemployment denial and appeals. How can asking for a fair wage for a job that is not in your job description constitute insubordination? Can you prove that I and other instructors and staff were not physically and verbally abused and threatened? Until you can provide me proof of all these numbers and facts, please keep your comments to what has taken place with you and your experience and at your site. Each site and individual are different.

For Karen: I do accept responsibility for my actions and what I was teaching. Because of my caring, striving for the betterment of the students and updating the curriculum, this is why I was terminated so do not preach to me about ethics, caring and looking for only the good as you too worked for BCTI, you too came to this site and you too were terminated by BCTI. And excuse me for misspelling ACCET and if you visit their web site, you can see what they really are. Yes I was happy the day I left but like many others, BCTI continued to be the unethical, misrepresentation and lying institution that they are. I too worked for Katherine Owen as she was one of the two Site Director's I had in my 16 months with BCTI and she was re-assigned to Corporate Headquarters because of her behavior and I know the dirt on her and why they took the Tacoma campus away from her. On your comment about signing the employee hand book; according to the company and state labor laws, an employee hand book is not a contract or a right to work form or any thing else other than company policies. Signing the book only indicates that you read them and are aware of the company policies. I too lost out on my vacation but who cares?

Why was a Director of Instruction fired right after I sent proof to BCTI that he lied to the unemployment office about things he said in the appeal process? Why have I run into so many former students who do not work in the Information Technology area who graduated from Phase II? One of these students is a janitor for Target. Why is there a state and federal investigation into how BCTI operates?
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#17 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Hello bitter party of 52

AUTHOR: Karen - (U.S.A.)

I worked for BCTI for 3 yrs as a funder. I was one of many that didn't survive the wave of lay offs. There have been some legit points raised, as well as just plain crap. I have been dying to ask Jack a question. Are you 12? Do you really need to resort to name calling and insults to get your point across? You obviously work for BCTI. Sounds like you need to learn the AFTER traits.

May I suggest to you Mark, that if you intend on bashing a company you at least get your facts straight. The cost of the program is actually closer to $22,000.00 and it is ACCET not ACCERT.
You don't just pay them to give you your certification. Any school that uses Title IV funding has to be approved by them. I think Dean really hit the nail on the head. Where did you get your information? It really looks like you pulled a lot of that stuff out of your butt. I think you are someone who simply can't take responsibilty for your self. You have taken some things that might have really happened and threw in some made up crap. Then blamed an entire company for everything. Maybe things did happen where you were at. Is it fair to blame the entire company? Shouldn't you be happy that you don't work for them anymore?

There are issues at BCTI. Don't think I haven't been bitter. I have been rolling in it for months. Like Barbara, I believed in what I was doing. I understand her feelings about wondering if all the hard work and dedication was worth it. I have wondered where the co-founders were during all the changes. I got one raise in the three years I was there. I earned a place on the Mexico trip that was canceled in April and than oddly enough, was rescheduled after the lay offs. I think we have all heard it said that people who are no longer with the company, are gone because they weren't performing or they weren't getting with the program. Odd that the number of employees who earned the trip to Mexico for being top performers dropped after the lay offs. I guess my idea of performing is different than theirs.

I would really like to know what is up with the investigation. I don't know Darci, but I would like to know if the plan is to get all of the schools closed down. Would it make you feel better to have several hundred people out of work? I may be wrong, but it sounds like things were going on while you were still working. Why not say something then? What's up with the newspaper guy? Are you looking to get 60 Minutes to come in and do a hidden camera thing? I would pay good money to see a 60 Minute story on Mindy singing along with an Alvin and the Chipmunks Christmas song, or the entire Admissions team singing Welcome to the Jungle in the lobby. That is about the only thing anyone is going to find in Everett.

I don't know about other sites, but I know for a fact that some of the more serious allegations being made, did not go on in Everett. I was never asked to monkey around with peoples funding. Did I see some questionable things go on? You bet. Those of you who worked in Admissions have heard the "every lead is a good lead" spiel. Everyone knows that is crap. Marketers get their numbers by getting people in the door. What would be the most effective way of getting a lot of people in the door? That would be lying. I saw people who were told we provided daycare. There was a lady who had to keep consulting here English/Russian dictionary to fill out a PAQ. My favorite ones of all are people being told we would give them money for living expenses or that we would pay their loan default. There is a reason why people hate telemarketers. It is true BCTI is numbers driven. Marketers have a budget to meet. Career Consultants have a budget to meet. Instructors have retention numbers to meet. Career Services have emloyment numbers to meet. Unfortunately meeting these numbers puts all of the departments in the position of working against each other. Marketers get them in the door however they can, but if they don't enroll because they are pissed off that they were lied to then it counts against the CC. I have seen CC's who enrolled people knowing they would never sit longer than 7 days. That magic number that determines if the enrollment will count for the CC. Now the student quits on day eight and it counts against the instructor.

I agree that how some things are done is messed up. I think they talk the talk but don't walk the walk. They ask that you directly communicate. But for the love of Mary don't directly communicate anything negative. I'm a firm believer in the no whine zone, but there is nothing wrong with raising real issues, such as a marketer lying to get people in the door. You are only allowed to directly communicate what they want to hear.

I lost more than my job. I poured my heart and soul into it. I brought my best friend into it. She got to keep her job. She is good at what she does and she does it with the best interests of the student. She is honest and ethical when enrolling people. I was asked to walk away from something I really believed in, and the best team I have ever had the privilige to work with. They were more like family to me. Every one of them are honest hard working people. We focused on each others strengths and forgave each other for any weaknesses. I had more fun in my 3 years than I ever thought possible. Mindy is a freak, but she was our freak and everyone on the team loves her. Not that she is perfect by any means, I do wish I could have been able to get her to listen to me a little more. Girlfriendsgot focus issues. There are days when I feel that my friendship was restructured as well.

There are legitimate issues out there. I guess I wanted you to see that not everyone in the company is what some of you have dealt with. I am by no means a staunch supporter of BCTI. I don't like them that much. I resent how I was treated by Katherine Owen the day I was let go. But she is all corporate girl. I don't think she realizes I'm aware that she had asked why I was still on the property. I guess it would be to much to ask that I get to say a proper goodbye to people who had become like family to me.

It seems to me that a lot of you were not happy when you were there. I know I wasn't. My last few months were miserable. But we all had a choice and we chose to stay. Take ownership of the choices you made. I chose to put up with a site rep who on a daily basis made me feel like something you wiped off the bottom of your shoe. She challenged my honesty and my integrity, neither of which I ever did anything to compromise. I gave her that power. I allowed her to chip away at my self confidence until there was nothing left. There are things going on. But I gotta ask the question. Do you really want to label an entire company for what a few bad members of leadership did or allowed to happen? There are good honest people still with the company. I know for a fact that a couple of instances of illegal activity was quickly taken care of once it was known. Why drag the media into it. What are we Watergate? I know a couple of people that would do the right thing if I had information about serious wrongdoing, and I called them today. Is it possible that the owners are out of touch. Yep. Stench is not so strong when you are at the top of the crap heap. But theyareno different than any other business in America. You look hard enough you will always find something wrong. In the immortal words of Guns and Roses, Welcome to the Jungle. It is what it is. I think some of you are looking for answers. Sometimes there are none, and you aren't going to find them here. We got voted off the island, but there are a whole bunch of bigger and better islands out there. I now have time to spend time with my daughter and go back to school. And do you really think anyone gives a flying flip? Ex employees with issues. That will get you far. May I suggest not expending so much time and energy on being angry. Take the good experiences you had and cherish them and learn from the bad ones. I for one think that it is BCTI's loss. I can walk away knowing I did good work and I did it honestly and ethically, and I did my best. They gave us the paychecks but we worked for the students, and isn't that really what it is all about. I can think of people even now who appreciated my efforts on their behalf. I can feel good about that. Who cares what leadership thinks. We know were the real power is.

As entertaining as this has all been, I have a life. Barbara I truly do sympathize but you are never going to move on if you keep rehashing the wrongs done. The vacation thing sucked. I lostover 130 hrs. But we all signed the handbook that told us that would happen. Jack where ever you are, I'm going to break my own rule about name calling. Can you say goober boy? Uncinch your belt and step off the stick you are sitting on. I came I saw and I purged. I intend to look to the new challenges ahead of me. Let's face it anyone who has sat across from homeless mothers and child molesters knows that most everything else is just stupid petty crap. Best to all.
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#18 UPDATE Employee

Until you step aside and realize what is really important to Tom and Morrie, you will not see the company for what it really is

AUTHOR: Becky - (U.S.A.)

There is no campus in Gig Harbor. You work for the admin office and of course you are a staunch supporter of BCTI. You don't have to see first hand what really goes on, what upper management forces people at the campus levels to do to make their "numbers". Until you step aside and realize what is really important to Tom and Morrie, you will not see the company for what it really is. You can admit that you need your pay check, and that you are not prepared to see it. We were all at that point and looked the other way while we were employed there. Then something clicks one day and you realize that the students and the staff are not getting what they bargained for. That the company is only in it for the money, and that no one up top gives a s**t about anything other than "numbers". I sincerely hope you choose to leave before they get rid of you. BCTI is a sorry excuse for an educational institution, employer, and business. You deserve better and so do the students!
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#19 Consumer Comment

Why is it ...

AUTHOR: Brad - (U.S.A.)

As I was reading along here, I have noticed something odd.

Why is it that most of the people that are defending BCTI, seem to have a problem with the ability to write grammatically correct sentences?

Mark, I have unfortunately attended the FIFE BCTI school, and it is almost exactly like you have stated. I can't believe I didn't see it before I signed up. At least they couldn't get me to sign up for Phase 2.

That would have been a huge mistake. For $12,000 they give you the materials you need to get an A+ and N+ certificates, but 2 of the instructors were let go because they were fighting to get the curriculum updated to fit Today's standards instead of yester-years. and they don't really teach you that much. You have to teach yourself. What a Rip-Off and I feel I was cheated out of my money by mis-representation of what BCTI offers.
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#20 UPDATE Employee

Wow Ken...

AUTHOR: Astonished - (U.S.A.)

I sure hope you are not an instructor because your grammar and writing skills are really bad!
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#21 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Wow someone is bitter

AUTHOR: Ken - (U.S.A.)

Barbara,

Bottom line...your butt was roasted and canned. For what again? Hmm...let see...being late. I am willing to bet, if you were still employed with BCTI you wouldn't be writing this. Going back to your previous posts, that was the only job you will ever hold. Now, because you lacked responsibility, you're now going to someone else and cry.

Oh by the way, in one way shape or form a company is operating unethically and illegally. I know because I worked with three other companies & I saw it didn't feel right. One of those companies I was let go, BUT I didn't go and complain to any agencies.

Just face it...you jobless and no income and you're bitter. How do you solve bitterness? Sweet revenge.

By the way, once this is over and you're at the losing end...I just hope this post did not reach any of "your" prospective employers. Because at your age, this is not what you need and you're quite aways from receiving retirement.
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#22 UPDATE EX-employee responds

READING COMPREHENSION 101 - KEN

AUTHOR: Barbara - (U.S.A.)

Evidently part of the Ability to Benefit exam (the portion concerning 'reading comprehension')never got to Ken in all the effort to be of assistance to those who truly needed his help. If you will read back, Ken, to the rebuttals already submitted, you MIGHT understand that I was, as were all the instructors from BCTI that I've EVER met, DEDICATED TO THE MISSION! It's a good mission statement but it is not indicative of the ACTUAL PRACTICES of BCTI's marketing, admissions, and career services teams!!!

As instructors, we were left out of the admissions process and reminded daily that our "mission" was RETENTION. "We will get them to you and then... it's up to you to keep them", regardless of their ability to benefit!!!!

Remember, as every instructor who ever collected a paycheck from BCTI can "honestly" report, It is RETENTION (How many students am I able to retain in my classroom for the next six weeks)that was the goal of the "mission"!

I will not waste my time or space here to respond further to anyone who wants to argue motives (revenge) and /or (mission). I think my last rebuttal speaks for itself! Business Computer Training Institute can do BETTER! I am not out for revenge. I believe the mission statement is sound, I object to that misson statement being held up as the flag that guides BCTI. I know better! I've been there!

"Business Computer Training Institute is in the BUSINESS of 'ENABLING' 'QUALIFIED' men and women to acquire the skills necessary to meet the needs of today's employers."

How often has this mission statement been misrepresented on behalf of students and dedicated employees who gave their all?!!!! It is the dedicated instructors out there that I take my hat off to! Those of us who continued to teach and continued to represent that mission as student after student gradutated without the skills they were promised because it was (in the BUSINESS AND MARKETING interests) of the Managers who accepted Feederal Funds to provide education!!

I DID speak out while I was employed (reading comprehension 101 , Ken...read up!) that's part of the reason I was fired!. I gave them the ammunition they needed but I never stopped defending my students. I am part of a stellar group of professional individuals who were dedicated to the instruction of their students regardless of the student's background.

I will be the first to stand and applaud the student who finally finishes something for the first time in his/her life! Those who learned and grew did so because of the dedicated effort of the team of instructors who were tasked to "push them through" at all costs! I was devoted to the growth of my students!!!

This was, ultimately, my downfall as I learned over a period of 4 1/2 years...devotion to students and the "mission statement" is NOT what BCTI is all about!!

IF you can keep your students in class, regardless of THEIR ability to benefit, you will be successful and celebrated as an example of what a BCTI instructor should be! If NOT, you instantly go from hero to zero and they will find a way to replace you.

BCTI is interested in acquiring the federal funds available when they enroll any elegible student regardless of the "Ability to Benefit" rules. The call to remember the mission statement is merely an effort to perpetrate the lie that seems to elude so many of you "dedicated new employees"!

It sounds good! I believed it too! I still do! This is why I said (reading comprehension 101 reminder Ken: read up...) that I was devoted to my students and the mission. In the end, it didn't matter anyway.. It hasn't mattered in hundreds of cases. The long-term employee (the old timer) is over 5 years and that's rare at BCTI!!! By that time you figure it out and go on (quit) or there WILL be a reason to fire you or lay you off due to " administrative restructuring"!!
If you don't believe it, talk to those who no longer work there...that's what the Department of Education in Oregon etc, is doing right now!! Talk to the students...listen to your teammates and decide for yourself!

The mission is SOUND!! I dedicated almost 5 years of my life to it! I am still working to further the cause of underprivelaged individuals toward the betterment of their futures...but! Business Computer Training Institute can do better when it comes to the marketing, administrative, and funding practices that have been such a HUGE question to this point!!

So, Ken...read the above...then answer the following "reading comprehension" questions regarding what you've read...
1) Do I get it? or
2) Do you?

("Ability to Benefit ...Tutoring Daily") by instructors dedicated to the mission to help LESS THAN qualified men and women pass the ATB so the enrollment statistics would continue to add dollars the coffer! so that we could honor the "In the BUSINESS of" section of the mission statement!

(reading comprehension lesson #2 for Ken read up)

I argued while I was employed, I have been arguing ever since! It isn't the mission statement that is flawed nor the effort of every dedicated instructor, it is the business practice of BCTI that is currently under investigation!! If you are going to take government money to provide benefit to an underprivelaged population then I, as a taxpayer, if IF NOTHING ELSE, have a RIGHT to help discover that those funds are being used correctly!!)

Again, my congratulations to every dedicated team member and student who succeeded in spite of the obstacles!!

Business Computer Training Institute
CAN DO BETTER!
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#23 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Ken I don't think you get it

AUTHOR: Thank You - (U.S.A.)

Either the Gig Harbor campus has very different business practices than the Beaverton campus, or you are completely oblivious to anything going on beyond your written job description.

We were all instructors who believed in the mission. Unfortunately laws were being broken and people were acting unethically in both the recruiting end and the graduate services end. BCTI is a great idea, with a great mission. We all worked hard to do our very best and meet the needs of our students helping them to become the very best they can be.

I believe the results of the current investigation will be very telling. Just stay tuned Ken and see for yourself what type of business BCTI really is. Without the instructors it is a diploma factory with a couple of big wigs raking in millions of dollars in federal money while they hang on their yachts and go golfing.
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#24 UPDATE EX-employee responds

My Gosh Barbara... BCTI's mission is to change the lives of people who didn't make it anywhere else

AUTHOR: Ken - (U.S.A.)

Boy...you just don't get it! First of all, BCTI's mission is to change the lives of people who didn't make it anywhere else. Okay, granted some finished high school or even college, but for some reason they needed this school.

We did not market this school so they can get a $50,000 a year job, but maybe they can get a job or a "career" that they can be proud of. So many students were or are "down ando out." No place to stay, but yet they found reason to go back to school and maybe get back on their feet. I have not seen a school like this that will cater to the type of students they accept.

Universities and other "trade schools" would even touch these students with a ten-foot pole. So base on our demographics, YES I agree some students who finish couldn't operate a digital toaster with a picture manual. BUT you may have forgotten the real gift they have gain and that is confidence that they started something and finished. Something, you and anyone here can't take away.

You may yes that's an expensive gift ($10,000), but name one school that offer education and dedicated instructors who are will sacrifice their own paychecks for the betterment of these students. And there isn't a company that is perfect and there is always room for improvement...but you're approach is revenge.

If it isn't revenge then why didn't you come forward with this issue while you were employed. And last, I recently turned a job offer that would pay more than BCTI could ever pay me. But because of the position and it's requirements I decided to stay. So NOT everything comes down to money...because we believe changing lives reaps more rewards.
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#25 Author of original report

Reply to Dean, how can you make statements that you know are false?

AUTHOR: Mark - (U.S.A.)

Dean:

Since you were new to BCTI, how can you make statements that you know are false? You do not know me, you do not know what took place prior to your being hired at BCTI and you do not have the proof that you state you have about what took place prior to your hiring at BCTI.

If BCTI is such a great place two work and learn, why do so many staff and students leave? I have kept a record of this while at BCTI.

BCTI denied me unemployment benifits because a Director of Instruction Lied to them and I proved he lied to the State and to the School. I will not go into detail but Dean, I DO HAVE THE PROOF!

Knowing who you are and your attitude, I will not justify your remarks as I am a professtional. You are the perfect person that fits BCTI's culture. I wish you the best in finding a new postion.
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#26 UPDATE Employee

I work for, but don't trust BCTI ..As an insider, I do not think that anything BCTI does is illegal, however it is unethical.

AUTHOR: Eric - (U.S.A.)

As an insider, I do not think that anything BCTI does is illegal, however it is unethical. Some staff members were fired, so what, the turnover is astronomical at BCTI. Maybe it is because they do not like to give raises, but anyone there for more than a year better watch out. Or maybe it is just easier to crack the whip on eager new hires.

Yes, there are some instructors who have been there for a long time, but they do not have to play the "numbers" game like everyone else. Think about who has to go to those awful "success team" meetings, not the instructors. Face it, at BCTI instruction does not matter.......any instructors eligible for the Puerto Vallarta contest?

Plus, if you are fired, or had an outstanding career, it does not matter. Try getting a recommendation. It is company policy to neither give written or verbal recommendations, due to fear of future legal issues. (gee, why would BCTI be concerned about that?)

Personally, I am wondering about this BCES garbage. It was supposed to be this new great employment tool, but it just seems to be career services with some extra step of the student saying that they want a job.
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#27 UPDATE Employee

I work for, but don't trust BCTI ..As an insider, I do not think that anything BCTI does is illegal, however it is unethical.

AUTHOR: Eric - (U.S.A.)

As an insider, I do not think that anything BCTI does is illegal, however it is unethical. Some staff members were fired, so what, the turnover is astronomical at BCTI. Maybe it is because they do not like to give raises, but anyone there for more than a year better watch out. Or maybe it is just easier to crack the whip on eager new hires.

Yes, there are some instructors who have been there for a long time, but they do not have to play the "numbers" game like everyone else. Think about who has to go to those awful "success team" meetings, not the instructors. Face it, at BCTI instruction does not matter.......any instructors eligible for the Puerto Vallarta contest?

Plus, if you are fired, or had an outstanding career, it does not matter. Try getting a recommendation. It is company policy to neither give written or verbal recommendations, due to fear of future legal issues. (gee, why would BCTI be concerned about that?)

Personally, I am wondering about this BCES garbage. It was supposed to be this new great employment tool, but it just seems to be career services with some extra step of the student saying that they want a job.
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#28 UPDATE EX-employee responds

You're Right Jack! I accept responsibility for my insubordination and tardiness

AUTHOR: Barbara - (U.S.A.)

Thank you for your response Jack, of Tigard!
In 4 1/2 years YES I was tardy. I accept responsibility for that! I have definately learned my lesson! You are correct and attendance is a very important part of professional behavior to be modeled by instructors. I accept responsibility for the last straw that gave my Director the reason he needed to fire me!

Speaking of KARMA (as you did in the direction of Darcie) I guess we reap what we sow. I don't recognize your name as an employee so assume you don't know me at all and if you do...you are using an alias to speak your mind. At least my "insubordination" was constantly on the subjects that have been described here and will continue to be so and I am not afraid to use my own name!!

I accept responsibility for the attendance issue but reject the argument that it was justified! There was nothing I did in the time I worked for BCTI that justifies the trashing of my career except their need to lay the blame on employees rather than accept responsibility for the very questionable marketing and administrative business practices that are currently under investigation. I will leave that final decision to those who are trying to help "clean up BCTI's act". I'm not worried about proving anything. The documentation and verification af all these charges and "stories" is publicly available. I admire Darcie for her willingness to finally speak up and allow her name to be used publicly. God knows how many others have wanted to over the years (and still do) but were afraid to lose their jobs.

I know that they had to get rid of me (I didn't keep my mouth shut while I was working for them and I don't keep it shut now). My Director would have been fired if he hadn't fired me! I know the difference between insubordination and defending the truth. At least I'm speaking the whole truth! In the interests of keeping my job, I kept my mouth shut too many times and, eventually, it didn't matter anyway! As many times as I thought about quitting, in hindsight, I wish I had. I always came back because I was devoted to my students and tried to give them the best I had to offer. I made mistakes, I accept responsibility for them and I have definately paid for them!! I can face myself in the mirror and be proud of the work I did for BCTI.

I am aware that it was my own fault that they had the "documentation" to prove their "reason for firing me". I was in class at 8 am but rarely had a full class of students and no manner of threats, offers of reward, etc. could get them there. Did I get any ideas from my Director as to how to change this behavior? No. As many times as I asked, "How do we get them to show up?" the answer was always on me. The first thing I had to do every morning (as did every instructor) was call every absent student. That was a paramount part of my job description!! It is the fault of the instructor and nothing else if a student is not in class. Considering the need to retain them all, this makes sense but takes the instructor "out of the class for those who are in attendance"! Isn't it interesting that the performance evaluation of instructors is not based on their technical performance but on their retention statistics?!

Finally, it isn't revenge we are after. How would you like to be one of these students who was promised the moon by people who's jobs depended on their lies and then end up that "success story" who finally finished something for the first time in his/her life and can't do anything with it!! There is something positive to be said for that, definately, and I am proud of every one of them. but...now he/she has a $12,000+ debt that is probably in collections and no "super" job that allows them to pay for it.

Isn't that way too much to spend for developing social skills and self esteem? I think there are even free clinics that can do a better job!

I know that we are not vengeful, even if that's how it appears to you, and I look forward to the consequences of any investigation that can help clean up this totally out of control system of making money on the backs of professionals and those who are unable to defend themselves!

Business Computer Training Institute can do better!
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#29 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Message for "Jack"

AUTHOR: Theresa - (U.S.A.)

Nice grammar.
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#30 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Barbara and Pelsor Traitor

AUTHOR: Jack - (U.S.A.)

This for Barbara,

For an "hag" who claims to be smart...you sure are dumb.
1) Being 12 minute or 30 seconds late is very irresponsible. By the time your shift start, you should be ready to work. NOT just coming in. Any employer would can you any day.
2) Car pool, bus, or driving...no matter you look at the situation, it's still your responsible. You are an adult and you have total control of the situation. Too traffic...well..then wake up an hour earlier than usual.
3) Why would an employer give you a raise for being late and insubodinate all the time?
All in all, it's your own doing that put in this position. So, do yourself a favor...look at mirror and say "hey, you screwed up!"

And this for Pelsor,

1) Karma. Nothing more and nothing else.

By the way, revenge maybe sweet for you both. But you never know what consequences lies ahead.
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#31 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Your help is needed, The Washington Workforce Training and Education Coordinating Board is also investigating all of the Washington schools

AUTHOR: Darcie - (U.S.A.)

Anyone who would like to come forward in the investigation of BCTI should contact Brent Hunsberger at the Oregonian: brenthunsberger@news.oregonian.com or
Ray Lindley at the Department of Education: ray.lindley@state.or.us

The Washington Workforce Training and Education Coordinating Board is also investigating all of the Washington schools so if you live there contact that company too!

BCTI is under investigation right now and any information you have can help!
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#32 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Everything they are saying is TRUE and more! part of the lay off

AUTHOR: Barbara - (U.S.A.)

To anyone considering Business Computer Training Institute as a student or as an employment opportunity:

After almost five years as a professional instructor, I was finally terminated from the Beaverton site for reasons of attendance; exactly one week before "company wide lay offs, administrative changes, and reorganization" began. Instead of being part of the lay off, I was fired because they could prove that I had been late to work so they had a reason to fire me. After I applied for unemployment, and answered, "yes and no" questions truthfully, my termination legally translated to "misconduct connected with work" because I had been warned about tardiness on a previous occasion.

I was then denied unemployment benefits. When I requested the 128 hours of accrued vacation time that I never used (I rarely missed work and we were rarely able to take extended periods of time off due to staffing difficulties) I received a letter from this company's attorneys telling me that there were no state laws in Oregon or Washington (corporate headquarters for BCTI) that required them to pay me these benefits so, my request was denied.

I appealed my unemployment decision and, was part of the Administrative Law Judge's hearing to determine if I was, or was not, entitled to unemployment benefits. At this writing, I have been unemployed for 15 weeks, have received no compensation other than my final, partial paycheck, and have lost my appeal as well as my request for a review of the appeal decision.

I do know that my employer was required to prove, by Oregon regulation, OAR 471-030-0038(3) "willfully or wantonly negligent (indifferent to the consequences) violation of the behavior which an employer has a right to expect of an employee". The question that is being argued is: whether I was willfully and wantonly negligent when I was 10-12 minutes late to work, through rush hour traffic that day, just because I had been previously warned, about my attendance, or not. The decision I recently received from the Employment Appeals Board who upheld the original decision was 2-1. One judge dissented stating that since I was carpooling that day, I could not control what time the driver arrived at my house and was therefore beyond my reasonable control and not "wantonly negligent conduct"! I applaud that reviewing official for his sensitivity but why couldn't the other two reviewers see the same thing? I have again been denied unemployment benefits?

It is extremely difficult for me to understand why being 10-12 minutes late to work on one day in 5 1/2 months (after being warned) constitutes willful and wanton negligence and indifference to my employer's expectations. BCTI has the legal employees and the dollars to pursue this but I sure don't. The total amount of unemployment insurance that I have been denied by now is over $5500! BCTI denied the 128 hours of vacation time accrued up to the time of my dismissal but, luckily, I was able to withdraw the vested amount of my 401K-retirement fund without penalty because I turned 55 this year. That is now gone but has sustained my rent and utilities up to this point as I search for new employment. I have been allowed $141/month in food stamps while my case is under appeal but that will be disallowed as soon as the decision is final.

Not only have I been left without ANY funds other than my retirement savings to support my search for new employment for the past 15 weeks, my professional reputation has been tarnished with the definition of "misconduct connected with work" as my reason for termination. As I search for work and fill out applications, this is the answer that I must give when I refer to my most recent employer, supervisor, and "reason for leaving work" after 4 1/2 years of dedicated, professional service!! I have even, recently, been denied the privilege of even filling out an application for one employer due to, this, my reason for dismissal!

My only chance for any unemployment compensation now is to file a petition for judicial review to the Oregon Court of Appeals. This filing requires a $237 filing fee as well as a very strongly worded suggestion that I retain an attorney so that my appeal won't be thrown out due to an error in legal process I might inadvertently make if I prepare the brief myself. I may not be able to prove that BCTI found a "reason" to fire me and leave me without benefit but I am convinced that is what happened. Now I am just a name on an unemployment case and referred to as a "disgruntled employee" without money to pursue my claim further.

I am grateful to Brent Hunsberger of The Oregonian for being one who finally has the courage to begin to publicly report an investigation into the business and professional practices of an institution I once served with such dedication and pride. http://www.oregonlive.com/business/oregonian/index.ssf?/base/business/10894609303821.xml#continue

In my case, I sit here rather stunned today as I realize that the 4 1/2 years that I dedicated to teaching and to BCTI have been erased and irreparably tarnished by my former employer's dedicated effort to deny me any benefit of those years of service with a concerted effort to discredit my words in defense of my position. I worked the last three of those years without a penny added to my salary for even a cost of living increase. I thought I might be able to look back over my teaching experience with pride and a sense of accomplishment. Instead, I am bitter with disappointment, my savings have been exhausted as I search for new employment with a "black mark" (misconduct connected with work, not rehire able) on my professional reputation, and serious doubts about my future as I look forward ten years to the age when I will be eligible for social security. Not exactly what the BCTI vision of teamwork, ethics, and professionalism that I thought was a company wide commitment.

From the presidents of the company, (Tom Jonez and Morrie Piggot) on down to the first level, new employee, this is what we believed and the commitment we made to our teammates, our students and our professional careers. Based on the treatment I have received since my dismissal from BCTI and the comments of Mr. Jonez as quoted by Brent Hunsberger in the Oregonian article, I am offended and disgusted.

"Pelsor also said more than 25 instructors, career counselors and administrative staff at the Beaverton campus had quit or were fired during her periods of employment at the campus, which totaled about three years. The campus has a staff of 17, she said.
Private vocational schools with staff turnover rates exceeding 50 percent can be placed on probation by State Superintendent of Public Instruction Susan Castillo.
Jonez said he did not know individual campus turnover rates but said many of BCTI's staff leave for higher-paying work after improving their software knowledge through staff-training programs."

Does he really believe that his instructors came to BCTI to learn the software so they could go out and get higher paying jobs?? To know that someone I respected, admired, and dedicated so many years of my professional service to can be so blind to his own employees and their genuine efforts on his (BCTI)'s behalf makes me wonder if anything that I committed to at BCTI in the past five years was worth the effort or was it all just to put dollars in his pocket. Is this a smaller example of what the Enron employees felt like?

Since my termination, I am aware of other "employee lay offs" due to the reorganization efforts company wide. It is my hope that this reorganization is an effort to correct the incredible wrong that has been allowed to exist for so long. Unfortunately, it was the most experienced, long term and dedicated employees that were laid off at the Beaverton site. Is this in the best interests of the students who are paying such incredible amounts for experienced educators or a concerted effort to remove those who know too much?! I leave that question open as the future of BCTI unfolds. I applaud those who are trying to adhere to the laudable goals of the company that I served with such pride for so many years.

I hope my words will help to illuminate the need for some serious investigation before more unemployed and undereducated people are suddenly saddled with debt they will never be able to pay off because they will never be able to benefit in the way BCTI insists they will benefit when they are recruited for enrollment into BCTI. If they have a High School Diploma or GED and are eligible for any kind of state grant or social program, regardless of their ACTUAL educational and social ability to benefit, they are even more desirable because the financial aid department is able to acquire this money and keep it as long as they remain enrolled in the program and complete the requirements for a certificate, hence, the emphasis on RETENTION as a technical performance evaluation for their instructors.

In closing, I wish to honor every, single one of my former students and their desire to be successful. I want them to know that they hold the key to their own success in their hands. With determination, willingness and a desire to change, they can move mountains in their lives and careers. When they put their faith and trust in the hands of professionals who are truly dedicated to their success, in addition to the positive reinforcement of their dreams, they deserve to be told the truth about their individual abilities and accomplishments!! It is for this reason that I can no longer keep silent about the practices of an institution that I once believed was dedicated to this simple principle.

Those students who have gone on to create major changes and new dreams in their lives have done so with the full support and encouragement of every dedicated professional who walked with them through the program at BCTI. I don't wish to diminish their accomplishments in any way by my comments here. Rather, I will applaud them and all of the professional teammates I worked with at BCTI who were dedicated to this same goal. It is, however, extremely unfortunate that the actions of a few, in leadership positions, can so negatively and irreparably affect and tarnish the genuine accomplishments of the many in the overall view.

"A disgusted and disgruntled employee"
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#33 UPDATE Employee

Call us BCTI

AUTHOR: Mike - (U.S.A.)

As a current "BCTI employee" (for the moment) I know the pain. A co-worker was recetnly telling me about how she has been there for 5 years and has never so much as had a cost of living increase. Whenever the subject was discussed it was....one more student this, one more graduate that...etc., etc...... Personally, I have been there 2 years and have never had any sort of review.
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#34 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Give it some more time Mark

AUTHOR: Long Timer - (U.S.A.)

I worked for the company for over three years at several different campuses. If I were still employed this year would be my fourth breakaway, which btw is absolute unabriged torture so if you can lie, cheat or steal your way from going it would be a worth while effort.

The company only cares about MONEY. They do not care about students, the teachers and select staff do, but the company does not. In fact the company doesn't care about you either Mark. In the words of Tom and Morrie "New blood is good". They only care about your numbers.

You will go from hero to zero with the blink of an eye, don't even think about regular raises, reviews, or steady management. I watched the entire campus I worked at roll over completely in less than two years. I have have had 6 directors of instruction, 3 executive directors and countless other co-workers come and go during my sentence there. One employee was actually fired after filing a workers compensation claim when she was injured on the job.

I have watched a multitude of students get enrolled and pushed off to phase 2 who did not have the ability to benefit from the program. This is a direct violation of the federal department of education.

BCTI is in violation of too many laws to count and if you care about people like you say you do than you will make sure that the company you are working for is really representing the students best interests, and if not, do everything in your power to make that the case.

I am not a disgruntled ex-employee as I left of my own volition, but if you spend enough time there you will begin to see what the more seasoned employees have seen. Actually your rebute was posted in February of this year, I would be shocked to find that you were still working at BCTI, whereever you are I would bet that you are whistling a different tune now.
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#35 UPDATE Employee

A NON-disgruntled employee comment ..Sure, SOME students are from the backgrounds he mentioned

AUTHOR: Dean - (U.S.A.)

Interesting read although it comes from a Jaded, disgruntled former employee.

Note, unlike Mark, I can substantiate all my rebukes.

Sure, SOME students are from the backgrounds he mentioned. But what do you expect? They are in NEED of an education. If they already had an education, they wouldn't be coming to improve themselves. BCTI is a FOR PROFIT institution, not a public school, so who are the sales staff going to target but those in NEED of improving
themselves. His remark about the student body being primarily peaple out of prison, from rehab, etc. made me want to laugh. Those are HIS perceptions. I haven't read any headlines in the news such as "Student body busted for pot sales" or "Killer convict kills teacher" yet. I'm sure the former unemployed truckdriver in my class would like to be told he's been given such labels!

I don't know where he got his stats on turnover etc. Some are undervalued and some are overblown or biased misstatements. Those that want to succeed and have drive after graduation DO find jobs. Right now, there is a white board at our campus that is filled top to bottom with a listing of current grads that got jobs. AND I can give you the names of Several grads I know of that have gotten their A+ certification. One
of my own students this next couple of weeks is going for the exam.

I Have NEVER been asked to push a student through my course as he mentioned. Though,
there have been times I've seen students with issues that had to be dealt with on a
professional level. It took understanding and sensitivity of course because Everyone deserves an equal chance to succeed DO THEY NOT?? Your Lack of student sensitivity is just one type of complaint I got from some of your former students. Not to mention YOU berating, browbeating and disrespecting those in class that disagreed with your Teaching style or opinions/beliefs. Indeed Mark, I was relieved when you were let go as I got weary of the side remarks I heard you say about other staff, students, and the school. Knowledge and experience alone does not gauge a persons worth to a company, especially a teacher. By-the-way... DAAAHH!!! Teachers don't get paid a whole lot!! What other world/dimension do you live in? Turnover of staff? Sure!! Not everyone
is cut out to be a teacher and those that succeed have Their Students BEST INTERESTS
at heart. Not a "better then thou" attitude.

As for the rest, I leave the readers with this company teacher creed: "BCTI is in the BUSINESS of enabling Men and Women to meet the needs of today's Employers". A promise I seriously Take to heart and Every time one of my students succeeds no matter what the undertaking, I'm proud to be part of it.

Lastly, Thanks for giving me the Job Opening... I have 100 percent student turnover in my class and the Students are ENJOYING the class. I've gotten Higher Student Evaluations then you ever did and why? BECAUSE I CARE!
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