The College Network Scam
- 11Feb 15, '13 by karmabrownTo All UPSET and angry nurses who joined THE COLLEGE NETWORK
This is my story...
After graduating my LVN program and waiting to take my boards, all of my classmates and I were very positive and enthusiastic to keep our schooling going and continuing on the path to becoming an RN. I heard alot of my classmates talking about The College Network and how they joined and are already taking their pre-requisites towards their RN. I wanted to see what it was about and met with a TCN advisor. He painted pretty pictures of how it is SO easy and convenient to study with TCN and how many of their students have went on and got their RN in a couple of years. I completely fell for his pitch as I was so enthusiastic to keep learning and further my career as a nurse. All TCN does is provide you with less than satisfactory notebooks and online modules for a ridiculous price. They are essentially a publishing company that has absolutely nothing to do with colleges and admission to colleges. What their advisors pitch is not what it actually is. I don’t know one person that have succeeded using their materials. Not to mention Indiana State and some other colleges they mention they’re affiliated with do not even recognize or accept students from California! Ask them about it.
I called them multiple times explaining my discontent with their study guides asking them if there is anyway I can get out of the contract to no avail. I have only received one binder full of useless information and have not even used any of their study modules or materials in years, but have continued to pay them every month out of fear it will ruin my credit. I know there are MANY of you out there that are still doing this very same thing. Many of these people are full time hard working people, single moms, struggling families-whatever the case may be..that cannot get out of these binding contracts. This is a complete scam and I am warning each and every one of you enthusiastic nursing students and others who may be looking for a way to further their career “conveniently”.
DO NOT LOSE HOPE!! I have searched relentelessly for a solution throughout the years I have joined TCN and I finally got my answer. To All of those who are looking for a way OUT of your contract, contact the INDIANA ATTORNEY GENERAL. I emailed him and told him my story. I immediately got an answer back from the Attorney General and TCN with a settlement offer. It would be selfish and I wouldn’t feel right if I did not atleast try to warn others of this company and give atleast one person relief and a light of hope that there is a solution to getting out of their contract. Being a nurse is not easy by any means and it is tragic that there are companies like this that target nurses trying to further their career.
I wish you all good luck!!Last edit by Joe V on Feb 17, '13 : Reason: removed formatting
- 0Feb 16, '13 by SE_BSN_RNWhen I first decided to go back and get my BSN I looked at going thru them. Something just didn't seem right, and when I asked about clinicals they said it was 3 days in a local hospital with a nurse who checked you off on skills.....nothing invasive. I said no thanks when I heard that. Along with all of the people who failed clinicals for silly stuff, then having to come up with more money to do it again. This is a case of buyer beware! And, yes, I agree they are a scam!
- 3Feb 16, '13 by Pixie.RN, BSN, RN, EMT-P Senior ModeratorExcelsior College has no relationship with TCN ... they actually warn students about third-party publishers, etc.: Exam Preparation Advisory - excelsior.edu
This is a hard, hard lesson that many people learn. When you sign a contract, it's just that -- a contract. An obligation. This is why I research everything to death before I sign -- because if it sounds "too easy," it probably isn't. The OP was lucky in that he/she was able to reach a settlement, but not all people will be so lucky -- many are held to their obligation that they incurred when they signed a contract. As with everything in life, caveat emptor! And I always tell EC students who have signed TCN contracts and who are upset at spending all that extra money that the best "revenge" is success in the program! Get some return on your investment.
Ironically, I got a postcard in the mail from TCN about 2 months after I graduated, and it was like, "Hey paramedic, want to be an RN in about 18 months?" Hahahaha.
- 0Feb 16, '13 by lhflanurse, MSNSuch a shame. When I started on my venture towards my BSN, there were little choices and I signed with TCN. They did fulfill their part of the agreement...I received the modules needed to take the CLEP/Dantes exams. I was unable to begin right away and after 4 years was able to begin using the system. I found the modules marginally helpful yet I passed all my exams on the first try. Since then, I have learned that you can do the same thing on your own through CLEP and Dantes (they provide study material, you schedule and take your exam and the scores are uploaded into the system. I think TCN is going to be hard pressed into continuing their program now that more and more programs are available.
- 0Feb 17, '13 by RNtoNPwithfaith@karmabrown
I feel like your post was an answered prayer. I signed up for TCN as an LPN back in 2003 to attempt to get my RN. Needless to say, I was never satisfied with their program-everything from the "binders" to the structure of the program. I paid 2k back, took 1 exam and these "no good-----" decided after 9 years to bing a judgement against me and sue me for 7K (that included all accrued interest)!!!!!!!!!!!! So, as angry as I possibly could've been-I had to begin paying them $250/monthly or face garnishment of my wages -which in Ohio is 25% of my disposable income. As an RN charge nurse at a local medical center, I made great money and 25% was going to kill me! So, I continued my arrangement with their "attorney" until my BSN student loans came due and I was up to my neck in loans bills. Long story short, I stopped making payments, and was once again sent garnishment papers from my local county clerk of courts. I sent the "emergency hearing" paper back to the courts so that I could speak with the magistrate about a $50/mon payment that I could manage well. I never heard back from them and not only 2 weeks ago the attorney had my bank account "frozen" and they took almost $1,000.00!!!!!!!!!! I was devastated to say the least. So...4 phone calls later, I am completely out of my 1,000.00 they got, cannot fight that...but u still owe another 3K!!!! The attorney, once again, had me go into an agreement that I would pay $50/month on the 1st of each month! They wouldn't except $50 before!!!!!! Ugh!!!!! HELP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Is there still hope for me to write the IN attorney general and somehow settle that 3K they say is owed to them! For what? They don't deserve another dime from me! They did nothing for me. It's not as if it was loan money and I spent the darn money! I just got boxes and boxes of binders for Gods sakes.
I wouldn't....in a gazillion years ever recommend TCN to anyone, EVER! It could only be a matter of time before they are forced OUT of BUSINESS!!!!!!!!!!
- 0Feb 17, '13 by Pixie.RN, BSN, RN, EMT-P Senior ModeratorRNtoNPwithfaith, Unfortunately it is against the website Terms of Service (TOS) to provide legal advice in the forums, so we can't really tell you what to do in your situation -- the OP can only describe what worked for him/her. I am so sorry you had this experience, and I wish you all the best in resolving it.