What’s a diploma mill? Explanation is right at your finger tips. Just check out the entry in Webster’s Third New International Dictionary:
“Diploma mill: An institution of higher education operating without supervision of a state or professional agency and granting diplomas which are either fraudulent or, because of the lack of proper standards, worthless…”
Many con men have found the lucrative field of diploma mills–or degree mills–to be as good as gold. In pursuing this line of con man endeavor they simply practice Harley’s First Law: You can lead a horse to water, but if you can get him to float on his back, you’ve got something. Think of how ridiculous this whole concept is: just apply on the internet for a college degree and in a finger-snap moment, when accompanied by a small fee, you have it. No fuss. No bother. No strain. Why, then, bother to attend college for four years or longer if your college education can be this quick and easy? This whole notion is so hard to swallow–seemingly, a mystery solvable only by Scooby-Doo–yet it thrives.
Many of the “home” addresses of these hoax perpetrators are nothing more than a post office box or “mail drop.” Remote regions of the U.S., like Montana, which has loose standards, are often used to locate these “institutions of higher learning.” Alabama, Hawaii, Idaho, Wyoming, Mississippi, and California, too, have either few standards or excessive loopholes. Mississippi has no oversight at all.
Unfamiliar European locations are also popular with the con men, who, without conscience or any moral standard to guide them, simply fall back on their basic principle: that money is the root of all wealth. They then follow this path accordingly: easy as falling-off-a-log education.
Now you see it, now you don’t. This particular magician’s appearance / vanishing act only proves Murphy’s Law of Combat #12: If your advance is going well, you are walking into an ambush. A great many people get their fake degrees revealed.
Who bites? Who actually believes that a counterfeit college education can have any benefit for them?
In analyzing why people believe this you could say, “my mother might believe that. My priest might believe that. Sponge Bob might believe that. Most people won’t.” Wrong! You’d be amazed at the number of people who have jumped at such “opportunities.” Perhaps, like so many others, they think they are thinking when they are only rearranging their own prejudices. Envy? Jealousy.? Greed? Who knows? Off the top, here is just a sampling:
> A North Carolina man whose degree-verified medical clinic treated an 8-year old girl who died.
> Parlaying a $100 degree he’d “earned” from a British degree mill, another North Carolina man raised venture capital to market an AIDs drug. He raised millions before getting caught.
> A San Clemente, California man raked in $10,000,000. He ran a fake degree operation that was located 2,000 miles from his home, in Louisiana.
Some of these scam schools also provide a complete transcript. Some provide phone operators who will verify graduation to inquiring employers. Some will supply laminated student I.D. cards, and other proof-of-attendance records. A few even offer class rings.
With only some 35% of U.S. corporations systematically verifying degrees as factual, is it any wonder why such a big market for fake college degrees exists?
If you try to fail and succeed, which have you accomplished? That’s a good question for all the people who are participating right alongside the con men in perpetrating this in-your-face scam.
This whole exercise seems like standing in a bucket and trying to lift yourself up by the handle.