(CHAPEL HILL, N.C.) — The University of North Carolina admitted Wednesday that about 3,100 students took so-called “paper classes” with no faculty oversight and no actual class attendance from 1993 through 2011.
The school estimates that half of the students were athletes, mostly from the UNC’s basketball and football teams.
Wednesday’s report goes much further than when the scandal first came to light in 2011, which initially stated that it was only about academics.
This revelation, however, drags the UNC’s vaunted athletic program into the morass.
According to the investigation conducted by the college, two employees in the African and Afro-American Studies department organized fake classes that doled out As and Bs to students who never showed up, presumably to maintain eligibility for sports.
The employees were Julius Nyang’oro, the department’s chairman, and Deborah Crowder, the department’s administrator. It was up to Crowder, the report alleged, to give out grades on single papers turned in by students, hence the term “paper classes.”
The investigation does not directly implicate any high level administrators at the school. However, it does suggest they missed obvious signs of improprieties and “failed to conduct any meaningful oversight.”
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