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Vermont Dog Earns College Degree (WCAX-TV report)

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A Vermont dog is the world’s first canine to earn a college degree. Chester Ludlow just graduated from Rochville University and as Keagan Harsha reports that has some worried that colleges today are going to the dogs. College isn’t easy. There are hours upon hours of homework. I’ve been working really hard. Some weeks you have three exams, two on the same day and one the day before. But not all students are stressed. Meet Chester Ludlow. Chester has his MBA. The 8 year old pug got a college degree without even cracking open a book. Good boy. His owner, Vicky Phillips, runs GetEducated.com, a consumer advocacy group. My little college graduate. She wanted to prove just how easy it is to get a college degree so she sent a fake resume and a $499 dollar check to Rochville University. Three weeks later… Chester had his degree, two sets of transcripts, and even a window decal for his car, never mind the fact he’ll never drive. He wants to now, that he has a window decal. Yes, we’re very proud of Chester. Smartest dog in the world? Absolutely and he is the first dog to ever earn an MBA, worldwide. Chester’s achievement is shedding light on diploma mills. Rochville is one of about 500 online universities that offer degrees for no work. The B O U A. Many of the schools are accredited, the catch is most of the accreditation agencies aren’t recognized by the US Department of Education. But in most states, including Vermont, diploma mills aren’t even illegal. So they’re not lying, they’re not committing fraud, technically, in most states becuase most states don’t require a college to be accredited. Most online programs and universities are legit. Champlain College offers 8 online degrees, everything from Accounting to Business Management. We’re actually a pioneer in online education, so it’s something we’re really proud of. Enrollment in those programs has risen 10 percent over the past 2 years. An increase, Millett says, could even be more significant if it weren’t for diploma mills. The mills have created a stigma about online degrees. And that’s why back in Westford, Phillips is hoping Chester will actually use his fake credentials… Here are his transcripts. …hounding diploma mills into cleaning up their act. And Vicky Phillips estimates that three-fourths of all people who do get those fake diplomas know exactly what their doing, but their willing to take the chance to save a few thousand bucks. Kristin… Amazing. Now Keagan, how do people who are looking at taking class online know if the school is actually legit? Well, there is a couple of things you can do. For starters, find schools with name recognition, specifically they say in the geographic area you’re hoping to work. And then visit that school. Most online universities do actually have a campus. If they don’t, that’s a red flag. Kristin… Alright, some good advice there, thank you Keagan. For more tips you can visit the info center at our website, wcax.com.

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