Business Case Study: The Case Of UNC Academic Fraud Case
Scott London had it all – the perfect family, a gorgeous house, luxury cars, great friends, a hip social life, and a nearly seven-figure job to support it all. London’s position as audit partner at KPMG came with all the perks imaginable. It makes you wonder what it would take for someone to throw all of it away. This is a case about a man who was blinded by friendship. All he wanted to do was help his friend – we can all relate to that.
If you were asked to commit fraud, would you do it? Would you aimlessly follow your boss’s orders like Harold Katz? Or would you follow in Jackie McLaughlin’s footsteps and challenge your boss? Many people find themselves in these unethical situations and a lot of them fall for it. It’s easy …show more content…
News College Rankings. Coupled with a highly successful athletic program, this makes UNC one of the most popular universities in the world. But is everyone at UNC given a fair chance to succeed? For eighteen years, thousands of UNC student-athletes took “paper classes”, while advisors funneled them into a specialized program that kept them eligible. As valued high school recruits, these students were promised a first class education. Instead, they received a stripped down version and an unearned degree.
Mary Willingham has spent decades tutoring athletes and other undergraduates in need of reading assistance. She loved her job and loved UNC, but something wasn’t right. The students she tutored made significate progress, but the idea that a student with elementary school skills was going to be able to write a college-level paper was crazy. Mary was concerned that the athletic department was targeting students with minimum education requirements and expecting the school to prepare them for college-level …show more content…
Mary recalled a case when a female basketball player showed her what was clearly a plagiarized paper. When a colleague advised Mary to allow the student to submit the paper and she got a B, that’s when Mary became concerned. So, Mary began digging and what she found was alarming. After looking at test scores, she found that 60% of football and basketball athletes were reading between a fourth and eighth grade reading level.
To help student athletes remain eligible for game-day, the athletic department developed a program that allowed athletes to take classes without exerting much effort. These classes would be called “paper classes” as they would rarely (if ever) meet and only require a paper at the end of the semester. These types of classes were largely popular in the black studies department. No student would receive lower than a B in the class, and all without affecting their athletic schedule.
Mary began to wonder if what they were doing was right. The university’s athletic department was abusing the system and Mary was allowing it to happen. Whether she liked it or not, Mary played a role in the scheme. Much like the Harold Katz case, Mary surely thought that she was just doing her job. Mary was blinded by her love for the job and the university. Katz was blinded by his trust in his