Slimey Business Practices at my Univ.

  • Thread starter QuarkCharmer
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In summary: Since this wouldn’t be America if you couldn’t monetize your children’s futures, the education sector still hasto find a way to make money off of the students. In this day and age, it seems like almost every institution is looking for ways to make money. There are a few ways that universities are trying to make money off of students, and one of them is by issuing them debit cards. This method is very slimey, and it seems like the school is trying to get as much money back from the debit card company as possible. The school is also trying to get people to open a slimeball debit account, which will have a few dollar fee to transfer the money back to a real bank
  • #1
QuarkCharmer
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My University changed the way it handles financial aid refunds. Rather than sending a check, or depositing it into an account, we have to sign up for a debit card service through a company that a quick google search indicates is VERY slimey. You can still get the funds direct deposited to your bank, but only AFTER you register on this slime-ball companies website and click through 20 pages of "Are you sure you don't want to not open an account with us?". Finally I declined the barrage of offers and figured out how to simply get the money to my bank of choice and I am met with "print this form and mail it to us before we confirm your account and deposit your money, OR, start a slime-ball debit account and get paid instantly! It could take up to 14 days to process an ACH transaction but using out account will let you..."

On further inspection, the school gets X% back from the ATM fees that slimeball company has all over the campus. If you open their account and they deposit funds into it, then there is a few dollar fee to transfer it back out into a real bank account!

I am outraged.

I would expect this from some crap-school (Everest, Fullsail et al) but not from <big state university>. This is just one big credit-scam (they emailed me an offer with 25% apr and I have GREAT credit) slash data-collection website. This makes me sick. I will gladly wait 2 weeks to have no part in this college-student rip-off fest.
 
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  • #2
Talk with a lawyer.
If the info you described is accurate this issue should be addressed by legal authority.
Good luck.
 
  • #3
It looks like a ton of schools are doing this now. Take a look at the drop-down on their homepage:

http://www.higheronecard.com/landing/start.jsp


I remember some years ago, credit companies were given a bad rap for stalking young students and giving out high rates and such, knowing they can't afford legal council ect. In any case, I thought that now most reputable colleges were more or less inclined to keep you out of trouble like this. We even sit through a lecture on using stafford loans first before using private ones and so on.
 
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  • #4
My community college issued me one of those higher one cards. They are offering free upgrades now with your picture id on the front.
 
  • #5
What's with keeping out the names of the school and slimeballer? It's not like you're disclosing any confidential information. In fact it might help us to know who to watch out for!
 
  • #6
QuarkCharmer said:
I remember some years ago, credit companies were given a bad rap for stalking young students and giving out high rates and such, knowing they can't afford legal council ect. In any case, I thought that now most reputable colleges were more or less inclined to keep you out of trouble like this. We even sit through a lecture on using stafford loans first before using private ones and so on.

Why would they? Hell, Universities were complicit in getting students into massive credit card debt up until a few years ago.
 
  • #7
A university is still a business, isn't it? No really, I'm asking, is it? It felt like the university I went to was a business.
I still can't believe how expensive American universities are. How can you pay $50 000 a year or more to go to university? That's insane. (slightly off topic, sorry)
 
  • #8
QuarkCharmer said:
It looks like a ton of schools are doing this now. Take a look at the drop-down on their homepage:

http://www.higheronecard.com/landing/start.jsp


I remember some years ago, credit companies were given a bad rap for stalking young students and giving out high rates and such, knowing they can't afford legal council ect. In any case, I thought that now most reputable colleges were more or less inclined to keep you out of trouble like this. We even sit through a lecture on using stafford loans first before using private ones and so on.
File a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission, or whichever commission is responsible for oversight of lending/financial practices, as well as with the state's attorney general.

I heard an interesting comment the other day concerning the financial markets - "When deviant (as in fraud, coercion, misrepresentation, . . . ) becomes the norm, . . . . "
 
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  • #9
Astronuc said:
I heard an interesting comment the other day concerning the financial markets - "When deviant (as in fraud, coercion, misrepresentation, . . . ) becomes the norm, . . . . "

This article is very interesting on how US student debt is being sliced and diced like subprime mortgages. May explain a lot...

http://nplusonemag.com/bad-education

...since this wouldn’t be America if you couldn’t monetize your children’s futures, the education sector still has its equivalent: the Student Loan Asset-Backed Security (or, as they’re known in the industry, SLABS).
SLABS were invented by then-semi-public Sallie Mae in the early ’90s, and their trading grew as part of the larger asset-backed security wave that peaked in 2007. In 1990, there were $75.6 million of these securities in circulation; at their apex, the total stood at $2.67 trillion. The number of SLABS traded on the market grew from $200,000 in 1991 to near $250 billion by the fourth quarter of 2010. But while trading in securities backed by credit cards, auto loans, and home equity is down 50 percent or more across the board, SLABS have not suffered the same sort of drop. SLABS are still considered safe investments—the kind financial advisors market to pension funds and the elderly.
 
  • #10
Alternatively, you can send an email to your school student body execs.

They should have more resources to deal with this if it is legitimate.

My school carry out these annoying business practices all the time but I don't think they can challenged legally.
 
  • #11
Hi Quarkcharmer :)

My school is doing the same thing with the same company. I did not activate the card as it is a terrible rip off as is their checking account. The ACH process is a pain, but they do resolve it within two business days. I have not had problems since.
 
  • #12
print up flyers and post on bulletin boards across campus.
 
  • #13
QuarkCharmer said:
It looks like a ton of schools are doing this now. Take a look at the drop-down on their homepage:

http://www.higheronecard.com/landing/start.jsp

Thanks for the heads-up. Luckily my daughters University isn't listed. But if it had been, being the "Payer", there would be lots of emails, etc. from me.
 
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  • #14
Yeah, pretty slimey.
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dy...html?hpid=topnews&sub=AR&sid=ST2010100304375"
Higher One charges students a $19 monthly penalty for accounts that aren't used for nine months, a practice now banned for credit cards.

A few years ago, my bank forced a debit card on me like this. I had to jump though a lot of hoops to even get to someone who could even explain anything about it. I was basically told that I had no choice. I refused to activate it. Eventually enough people complained and my last ATM card was not a MasterCard/Debit Card.
 
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  • #15
qspeechc said:
A university is still a business, isn't it? No really, I'm asking, is it? It felt like the university I went to was a business.
I still can't believe how expensive American universities are. How can you pay $50 000 a year or more to go to university? That's insane. (slightly off topic, sorry)

No, they're not businesses. They're nonprofits given tax exemptions and eligibility for deductible donations for the specific purpose of advancing a social mission, not maximizing revenue or net income.

I mean, unless you go to A Capella or Phoenix or some place that actually is a business.
 

Related to Slimey Business Practices at my Univ.

1. What are some examples of "slimey" business practices at universities?

Some examples of "slimey" business practices at universities include withholding research grants or funding based on personal biases, manipulating data to support certain agendas, and misusing university resources for personal gain.

2. How can I avoid becoming a victim of "slimey" business practices at my university?

To avoid becoming a victim, it is important to thoroughly research and understand the policies and procedures of your university. It is also important to maintain open communication with your colleagues and superiors and to report any suspicious or unethical behavior.

3. What steps can universities take to prevent "slimey" business practices?

Universities can prevent "slimey" business practices by implementing strict ethical guidelines and enforcing them through regular audits and reviews. They can also promote transparency and accountability within their institutions.

4. How can I address "slimey" business practices if I witness them at my university?

If you witness "slimey" business practices at your university, it is important to report them to the appropriate authorities, such as the ethics committee or human resources department. You can also seek advice from external organizations, such as the National Institutes of Health Office of Research Integrity.

5. How do "slimey" business practices affect the overall integrity of universities?

"Slimey" business practices can greatly impact the integrity of universities by damaging their reputation and credibility. They can also discourage potential students and researchers from wanting to be associated with the institution, ultimately hindering their growth and progress in the academic world.

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