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Congresswoman Waters' Writes Washington Post CEO Donald E. Graham Regarding The Recent Suspension of Kaplan College – Charlotte’s Dental Assistant Program

February 3, 2012
Press Release

Today, Congresswoman Waters' sent a letter to the Washington Post Company's CEO, Donald E. Graham, regarding the recent suspension of the Dental Assistant program at their Kaplan College's campus in Charlotte, North Carolina. The Dental Assistant program was suspended following allegations that its officials lied to students about the credentials they'd receive after graduating. As a result of this outcry, students were refunded their full tuition and Kaplan  forfeited their license to operate this program on their Charlotte campus. The text of this letter is below:


February 3, 2012

Donald E. Graham
Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer
Washington Post Company
1150 15th Street, NW
Washington, DC 20071


Dear Mr. Graham,

I am pleased that you and your company have acknowledged the inadequacies in your dental assistant program at the Charlotte, North Carolina campus of Kaplan College and agreed that students were not receiving the proper credentials needed to pursue a career in dental assistance upon graduation.

Many bad actors within the for-profit industry have continuously done students and taxpayers a disservice by failing to properly organize and develop credible programs and curriculums that result in real job and career opportunities. Although your institution does not support gainful employment, this is a prime example of why the gainful employment regulation is so important. Gainful employment not only informs students about exploitative programs prior to enrollment, it also mandates proprietary institutions to collect data and assess their individual programs in order to identify programmatic weaknesses and strengths.

I have long been a strong critic of the for-profit industry and its inability to adequately educate students and prepare them for careers that will allow them to pay back their hefty student loan debt. For decades, millions of students across the country have been given false hopes and accumulated massive amounts of debt as a result of the private postsecondary industry further hindering their ability to make a better life for themselves and their families.

I will continue to fight against any and all so called “educational programs” that exploit and mislead those who simply want a good education and a better life. It is my hope that other institutions with similar situations like the one at your Charlotte campus will follow your lead by surrendering their licenses for ineffective programs and refund the tuition of affected students.


Signature Rep. Maxine Waters
Maxine Waters
Member of Congress