Gov Abbott Directs University Boards To Investigate Admission Policies

Chris Fox
March 18, 2019 - 8:53 pm

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AUSTIN (1080 KRLD) - Governor Greg Abbott on Monday sent a letter to all Texas public University Boards of Regents following the U.S. Department of Justice's investigation into the college admissions bribery scheme that snared the University of Texas tennis coach. In his letter, the Governor directs the Boards to examine and investigate its admissions policies and procedures to ensure that no university employee engages in fraudulent schemes.

Governor Abbott’s letter:

March 18. 2019

Dear Regent:

Last week, federal prosecutors in Boston charged 50 individuals in an elaborate and widespread

admissions bribery scheme at elite colleges and universities. This investigation is the largest

college admissions scam ever prosecuted by the U.S. Department of Justice. Such deception and

fraud in the college admissions process undermines the integrity of our institutions of higher

education, and erects unjust hurdles for students trying to get into universities through hard work,

good grades, and community service.

The Legislature has assigned important responsibilities to the governing boards of Texas’

institutions of higher education, including setting campus admissions standards.1

Every board

must therefore closely examine and investigate its admissions policies and procedures to ensure

that no university employee engages in fraudulent schemes, quid pro quo arrangements, or

improprieties of any sort. Boards must take measures to prevent the corruption of the admissions

process. First and foremost, our universities exist to serve qualifying Texas students. Those

students, their parents and taxpayers must have confidence that the system is not rigged.

The integrity of the admissions processes at Texas’ institutions of higher education depends upon

the unbiased assessment of the merits of each applicant. I expect that all universities will closely

examine these issues and safeguard the integrity of the college admissions process.

Sincerely,

Greg Abbott

Governor

When asked about the scandal last Wednesday Governor Abbott said it’s appropriate that Federal authorities be able to continue their investigation into UT admissions. This came after Federal authorities on Tuesday accused the University of Texas Tennis coach Michael Center with accepting a $100,000 bribe to get a student accepted into the school through the tennis program. Center was charged with "Conspiracy to Commit Mail Fraud" and "Honest Services Mail Fraud."

While at a Governor’s Mansion Press Conference, Abbott had a message for all Texas universities. “It’s important for every university to go back and re-evaluate, to study and to investigate there admissions processes to make sure that nothing like this either is happening or can happen.”

On Wednesday the University of Texas relieved Center of his duties as Tennis Coach.