Report: #159700

Complaint Review: Harrison Career Institute Aka HCI

  • Submitted: Thu, October 06, 2005
  • Updated: Thu, October 06, 2005
  • Reported By: Franklinville New Jersey
  • Harrison Career Institute Aka HCI
    Mt Ephram Road, Voorhees - Coporate Offices

Harrison Career Institute Aka HCI Harrison Career Institute is off the hook for now. HCI goes to Trial Later: No date set Nationwide

Show customers why they should trust your business over your competitors...

Judge suspends HCI ban

JOHN ZIOMEK/Courier-Post
The Harrison Career Institute headquarters on Evesham Road in Voorhees has been put up for sale since the trouble began.
Students with questions about Harrison Career Institute may call the New Jersey Department of Education at (609) 984-5262.

Thursday, October 6, 2005
Washington Bureau

A vocational-technical school with campuses in New Jersey and Delaware can once again accept students on federal financial aid while it tries to clear itself of fraud allegations, a federal judge ruled Wednesday.

An official with Voorhees-based Harrison Career Institute Inc. said the post-secondary school operated by Harrison Commisso would begin actively enrolling students now that it has won a temporary reprieve.

Formed in 1979, HCI operates 14 campuses in New Jersey, Delaware, Pennsylvania and Maryland. About 1,800 students are enrolled in the private technical school, which offers programs for health and business careers. The New Jersey campuses are in Delran, Deptford, Oakhurst, Vineland, South Orange, Clifton, Ewing and Jersey City.

Fred Fitchett, the school's director of compliance, said the U.S. Department of Education's action last month to bar HCI from participating in federal aid programs has been a significant blow because about 80 percent of the 4,000 students who attend every year receive some federal aid.

Judge Ernest C. Canellos, who presides over government cases involving higher education institutions, ruled the school could start enrolling federal aid students after it agreed to hire an independent firm to process and manage applications from students on the Internet.

Canellos said he was satisfied the company -- Weber & Associates of Greenville, S.C -- would ensure against the falsification of student records. Education Department investigators allege the school has intentionally understated students' income or overstated their number of dependents to inflate the amount of federal aid flowing to the school -- charges school officials vigorously reject.

"The agreement (between HCI and the government) appears to soothe all my concerns," the judge said.

The agency charges that HCI officials:

Improperly enrolled students by having school employees or their relatives administer academic entrance exams that are supposed to be given by an independent tester.

Failed to refund the federal government money by fabricating student attendance records to show they were still attending even though they had left. School officials Wednesday said they would hire a certified public accountant to check attendance and enrollment records.

Violated contracts with students by failing to provide professional externships to students, as promised in their enrollment agreements.
A full trial on the case has yet to be scheduled.

Fitchett called the government's charges "a lot of supposition that is not supported by the facts," and said the judge's ruling Wednesday is evidence that the case against HCI is weak.

But Renee Reeves, 41, of Port Norris in Cumberland County, thinks the school cheated her out of an education.

It was bad enough that she felt she didn't get much computer technology instruction during her eight months at the Vineland campus because the school was disorganized and the teacher was lackadaisical and sometimes absent. But she's especially upset that she got stuck with $7,800 in loans after she said she was told half of it would be covered through grants.

"To find out I'm paying nearly $8,000 on this," she said. "That really sucker punched me."

Franklinville, New Jersey

CLICK here to see why Rip-off Report, as a matter of policy, deleted either a phone number, link or e-mail address from this Report.
Is this Ripoff Report About you?
Ripoff Report A business' first line of defense on the Internet.
If your business is willing to make a commitment to customer satisfaction Click here now..

Does your business have a bad reputation? Fix it the right way. Corporate Advocacy Program™

Set the record straight: Arbitration Program

SEO Reputation Management at its best!

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 10/06/2005 05:13 AM and is a permanent record located here: 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. Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report. READ: Foreign websites steal our content

Search for additional reports

If you would like to see more Rip-off Reports on this company/individual, search here:

Report & Rebuttal
Respond to this report!
Also a victim?
Repair Your Reputation!
Ripoff Report Recommends
ZipBooks Accounting Software

Advertisers above have met our
strict standards for business conduct.