Columbia Students and the Washington Post Problem

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Concerns about the quality of the business practices of Kaplan University are causing some Columbia students to get involved in the debate too.

According to a piece by Carol Scott on Change.org:

The Columbia University College Democrats Activist Council today kicked off a campaign on Change.org to tell Columbia’s president, Lee Bollinger, to speak out against unethical practices at Kaplan University, or else exit the board of the Washington Post Company.

“We must encourage him to use that voice, to stand up for these students, just as he would for us,” states the petition. “Ask him to stop the malicious recruiting practices. Ask him to cut the lobbying. Ask him to support governmental reforms. And if he can’t, ask him to quit Kaplan. Because he can do better than that.”

Bollinger (right) has been a member of the Post Company board of directors since 2007.

It’s a little unclear how students would measure success here since the petition only calls on Bollinger to “stand up for these students,” not take any specific, measurable action.

The petition started by a former Kaplan student calls for the Post Company to just shut Kaplan down until reforms have been made.

Philanthropist Melinda Gates resigned from the company’s board in December after an organization she funds published a report about shady business practices at proprietary schools. [Image via]

Daniel Luzer

Daniel Luzer is the news editor at Governing Magazine and former web editor of the Washington Monthly. Find him on Twitter: @Daniel_Luzer