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Olivet University Faces Accreditor Ultimatum as Probes, Violations Pile Up

Olivet University Faces Accreditor Ultimatum as Probes, Violations Pile Up


Alex J. Rouhandeh and Naveed Jamali
December 1, 2022
How many students are enrolled at Olivet University? If administrators at the Christian college—now at the center of a federal trafficking and money laundering investigation—know, they’re not saying.
Education regulators in New York and California said they didn’t get a straight answer when they asked for student enrollment data. According to one senior academic who worked at Olivet University, that is because the numbers are manipulated and bear no relationship to academic programs. The senior academic’s description, documents reviewed by Newsweek and the accounts of several former students raise questions over the extent to which Olivet functions as a learning institution at all.
Olivet is under scrutiny or has been shut down in at least 10 states and territories as regulators put increasing pressure on the university, founded by controversial cleric David Jang, who together with some of his followers, is embroiled in legal proceedings with Newsweek.
Regulators are demanding answers from the college over accusations of unlicensed campuses, incomplete disclosures, precarious finances, possible criminal connections and seemingly improbable enrollment math.
Now Olivet’s sole accreditor has decided to step in, giving the college an ultimatum to show; “honest and open communication regarding compliance with agencies such as accrediting, licensing, and governing bodies; Integrity in all financial matters and in compliance with applicable legal and government regulations.”
In a November 9th letter to Olivet President Matthias Gebhardt, the Association For Biblical Higher Education (ABHE) gave him until the first quarter of next year to prepare a report showing improvement in these areas before regulators visit the college in the spring.
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