Higher Tuition Rates Can Lead to Job Applications Turning to Diploma Mills

It’s no secret that the cost of education in the United States and abroad has risen significantly and is expected to continue to rise.  In fact, some authorities predict dramatic increases in tuitionrates through the foreseeable future.

For most people, this just means there’s a need to tighten their belts and choose one of the following options:

a)  Go to a school that’s more community-based rather than a liberal arts or prestigious university.

b)  Forego a bachelor’s degree and learn a trade OR get a certificate or associate’s degree.

c)  Put school on hold for now and get a job with a company that will pay partial tuition for long-term employees who want to get ahead.

d)  Start saving for their school of choice immediately, scaling back on unnecessary wants and working with a financial advisor.

These are all laudable and practical options.  But unfortunately, there is a small sector of persons who would rather take the “short cut”.  Those folks turn to diploma mills in lieu of getting an authentic degree.

As we’ve discussed before, diploma millsare, quite honestly, a scourge in terms of the business world.  They allow individuals to “buy” degrees (in the forms of diplomas or certificates), thus bypassing an online or brick-and-mortar classroom environment.

It’s cheaper, it’s deceptive and it’s tough for employers to spot.  That’s because diploma mills often have names that sound similar to legitimate colleges and universities.  This is where comprehensive background screening on every potential employee becomes essential.  Without it, any employer could wind up hiring someone who has basically skipped an important step in getting his or her diploma.

Don’t be duped by diploma mill-holding applicants.  Turn to a background screening firm.

Diploma Mills Alive and Well

It’s a tough job market out there… and for some applicants, that’s enough of a fact to turn them towards bad behavior and practices.  One of the problems that’s becoming more worrisome than ever to employers is the rise of the diploma mill.

We’ve discussed diploma mills here before, but it’s very important for employers to be reminded of their existence.  Diploma mills provide a job applicant with a legitimate-looking and sounding higher “education” credential.  Thus, his or her resume appears to be much more well-rounded and solid.

Though many employers believe they can ferret out diploma mills, it’s essential to note that they don’t have names like “ABC University”; instead, the diploma mills choose university monikers that easily sound like common college names.  And the resumes pass by busy human resources personnel without problem.

One way to determine if an applicant’s educational background is real or simply paid-for (or even made up, which is a subject for another post), is to do some research in-house.  Google the University, double check its authenticity and give a call to the admissions office.  Of course, this takes time… something that most businesses would give an arm and a leg to have more of.

That’s why the second way to determine if an applicant’s resume includes the name of a diploma mill is a bit better — hire a firm to conduct background screening checks.  That way, the company doesn’t have to do it internally but the job will still get done.

In the end, if employers want to hire right, they need to hire smart.

  • VerifyProtect: Fast, Secure, Affordable Background Checks.
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  • Background Checks Ferret Out Those Who Use “Diploma Mills”

    If you’re an employer and you’re not familiar with the term “diploma mill“, you should be.  Diploma mills are made-up educational institutions where individuals can essentially pay for a copy of a diploma that looks real.  Thus, when they apply for jobs, they can say they have a BA, BS, MBA… even JD.  Fortunately, background checks can and do ferret out such deceptions.

    Don’t think you can simply “tell” who is apt to use a diploma mill, either; there are plenty of out-of-work men and women these days due to the economic downturn.  And desperation can sometimes lead to unethical behavior.  That’s one of the reasons that it’s absolutely critical for all potential employees to be expected to undergo a comprehensive background check.

    Again, it’s just one more way that you can protect your employees, customers, vendors and, if applicable, volunteers from persons who should not be representing your business.

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  • A Dubious Award for the United States – Diploma Mill Capital of the World

    According to the numbers, the United States leads the world in offering something that’s rather embarrassing.  It seems that America — most notably the states of California, Hawaii and Washington — tops all other countries in the number of ”diploma mills”.  Ouch.

    What are “diploma mills”?  Well, to put it simply, they are entities whose sole purpose is to issue fake diplomas and certificates to men and women.  These diplomas look authentic, but the institutes from which they come are about as real as gnomes and fairies.

    So what is an employer to do?  Obviously, we recommend that every potential new hire be screened thoroughly — and that includes education verification.  If you haven’t heard of a school, there might be good reason.  It might not exist except on a website and piece of worthless paper.

  • VerifyProtect: Fast, Secure, Affordable Background Checks.
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