Attempted California college scam IDs 65,000 fake students

 Attempted California college scam IDs 65,000 fake students

California student aid official Patrick Perry was beginning a routine check of federal financial aid records a few weeks ago when he came across a mystifying number: 60,000 more aid applications from a particular group of students this year than last.

They were first-time applicants to California community colleges who were older than 30, earned less than $40,000 annually and were seeking a two-year degree rather than a vocational certificate. They were spread out across the state, applying to 105 of the 116 campuses in the California Community Colleges system — with the top number at Cerritos, Pasadena, Chaffey, Merced and Antelope Valley. And their applications began surging in May through mid-August.

“We were kind of scratching our heads going, ‘Did or didn’t 60,000 extra older adult students really attempt to apply to community colleges here in the last few months?’” Perry, director of policy, research and data for…

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