The college admissions scandal that rocked the United States in March 2019 implicated several famous people and their children. Dubbed Operation Varsity Blues, the scandal involved parents attempting to cheat their way into getting their children admitted to college. The scheme was orchestrated by CEO William “Rick” Singer, who used his connections to bribe teachers, coaches, and administrators to get children admitted to colleges they didn’t deserve to attend.
Singer’s modus operandi involved payments to The Key Global Foundation or The Edge College & Career Network. Parents would enlist Singer’s help in perpetrating fraud by paying bribes to their children’s teachers to artificially raise their test scores, using fake donations to fake charities to get their children recruited as athletes, and paying off administrators and coaches to get their children accepted.
The scandal quickly caught the public’s attention as well-off children were given priority over deserving ones. Lori Loughlin, Mossimo Giannulli, and Felicity Huffman received the most media attention. However, Singer was the mastermind behind the scheme and has yet to be held accountable for his actions.
Many of those involved in the admissions scam have either pleaded guilty or been given prison terms. Huffman was sentenced to two weeks in prison in October 2019 but only served eleven days. Loughlin was freed from jail in December 2020 after serving over two months, while her husband, Giannulli, is scheduled to be released in April 2021. Singer entered a plea of guilty to fraud, obstruction, racketeering, and money laundering in March 2019.
Singer’s cooperation with the FBI’s investigation led to several parents, coaches, and administrators being taken into custody. In July 2020, Singer’s legal team requested permission for him to move from California to Arizona. Singer was a graduate student in Phoenix, Arizona, at Grand Canyon University, working on a Ph.D. in psychology. The court granted their motion. However, Singer reportedly dropped out of college sometime in mid-July.
Singer’s exact whereabouts are unknown, and he sold his home in Newport Beach, Calif., for $2.5 million in the spring of 2019. He pleaded guilty on four felony offenses, including money laundering conspiracy, racketeering conspiracy, conspiracy to defraud the United States, and obstruction of justice. If he hadn’t volunteered to help the FBI catch some of the parents who fell for his scheme, he probably would have faced far more serious penalties.
In conclusion, the college admissions scandal that broke out in March 2019 implicated several famous people and their progeny. The scheme was orchestrated by CEO William “Rick” Singer, who used his connections to bribe teachers, coaches, and administrators to get children admitted to colleges they didn’t deserve to attend. While several parents have been given prison terms or pleaded guilty, Singer has yet to be held accountable for his actions. His exact whereabouts are unknown after he dropped out of college in mid-July 2020 and sold his home in Newport Beach, Calif., for $2.5 million in the spring of 2019.