The Washington Center TWC con job Washington, DC , Washington DC
Browsing the web I came across the impressive website of TWC, offering internships for US students and international students, claiming that, they find placements with all top US government agencies.
Accordingly, I had submitted my application for the Postgraduate Professional Development Program with the requisite fee of U$ 500 and specifically stated that I wanted to do an internship for Environmental studies and based on their advertisement was hopeful of doing the same with the US EPA and this was again reconfirmed by the center on 10/22/10 and on 10/27/10. The center thereafter sent me their letter of acceptance. This acceptance as per the terms and conditions in the application makes the application fee non-refundable.
Thereafter one Fred M. Baer, Program Manager, Academic Affairs, had a telephonic talk with me in the 1st week of November, regarding the internships and he was quite vague about the internships they could offer me and especially about the internship with US EPA, he was evasive and offered to get back to me with the details in a weeks time.
In the meanwhile, I had mailed the US EPA and they categorically stated that their internships were only for US citizens. This communiqu was conveyed to Fred on 11/10/10 and he replied saying, Sorry for the delay on working on your internship placement. I was addressing some deadlines for other placements. I will start to work on your case later today or on Monday. I have contacts at the EPA where I will send your profile. EPA does have a few programs that accepts non US citizens...those are the ones where I will be forwarding your profile. I am also compiling a list of other sites. By Monday PM you will be able to go on the accepted student site on our system and see where I have forwarded your profile.
No such thing happened and on 11/22/10 I wrote to them stating it appears to be a waste of time and that they should have accepted my application only after knowing my interest in the specific internship and accordingly sought refund of the application fees. On 11/23/10 Fred wrote back as follows: Sorry to hear that you are dropping from our program. I will remove your name from consideration at the EPA and the other three organizations where I forwarded your profile. As far as the application refund...you will need to ask for an acceptation from Enrollment as refunding the application fee is not our policy. I wish you well!
Isnt that statement preposterous? I therefore would like to forewarn all interested applicants not to apply for internships with TWC and not to be fooled by their website. They are scamsters? So I had to threaten them with legal action and forwarded a list of internet sites
viz., Barack Obama, White house, FBI, Justice dept, consumer fraud reporting etc., to which I was going to write and complain if they failed to refund the application fees.
Following which they agreed to refund the amount and for which their Sr.Accountant, wanted me to scan or fax the credit card details including the CVV number. Dont know, what he had in mind....may have thought, I was naive to provide such details for misuse by him. After more mails on the same my bank account details were furnished and they wired the amount in full. Lost U$15 for bank charges.
All in all a very bad experience.