Vicky Phillips (educator)
|Known for||Founding GetEducated.com|
Vicky Phillips is the CEO of GetEducated.com, an online consumer advocacy website for distance-education programs. In 2009 she infamously enrolled her dog Chester at Rochville University, which subsequently forwarded her an MBA in the name of her pet.
Vicky Phillips entered the field of distance-learning research in 1989 when there were only three schools in the US offering distance-learning degree programs and has been a leading consumer advocate for students pursuing coursework online since the early 1990s. She started the first American online counseling center for distance learners in 1990 and was the CEO of the Vermont adult education consulting firm Lifelong Learning.
She currently serves as CEO of GetEducated.com, which she founded to provide consumer information on online degree programs and seeks to undermine fradulent online educational organizations, as well as serving as a consulting agency for distance educators. It also serves as a ratings organization for online degree programs. They also distribute free guidebooks on the best accredited online schools and produce surveys on distance-education programs. Phillips is also an expert on online educational fraud, involved in combating online diploma mills and individuals who use false degrees to get ahead in their careers. In 2005 she warned that there were more fake online MBAs in the US market than real ones.
Media and publishing
In addition to publishing GetEducated.com, Phillips has been interviewed regarding current events related to online education by news organizations like Fox News Channel, Time Magazine, Wired Magazine, the Los Angeles Times, CBS, and ABC News. She is also the co-author of The Best Distance Learning Graduate Schools: Earning your Degree without Leaving Home and Never Too Late to Learn: The Adult Student's Guide to College, both published by Random House. She has also written essays for publications including CNN.com and Salon.com.
In 2009 Phillips created an experiment to see how lax the rules were regarding who can receive a degree from an online diploma mill. She enrolled her dog, Chester Ludlow, into an MBA program at the online Rochville University, by submitting a fake resume and a check for $499. Within three weeks the university sent a degree certificate and two sets of transcripts to Phillips in the dog's name. The official graduation GPA for the dog was a 3.19. Phillips stated that in response to the experiment, she has "had to deal with a lot of blowback, including personal threats" from the university involved. Part of those attacks included two blog-sites assembled to decry Phillips and her business as harmful to students and having biased rankings. The sites were described as "laughably bad and hastily constructed" by John Hendel.
- Anne Fisher (September 18, 2003). "Will I End Up Getting Scammed If I Pursue An Online MBA?". CNN. Retrieved May 23, 2013.
- Carol Frey (August 16, 2010). "Different Paths to a College Degree". U.S. News & World Report. Retrieved May 23, 2013.
- Vicky Phillips (January 20, 1998). "Education in the ether". Salon.com. Retrieved May 23, 2013.
- Robyn C. Clarke (April 1999). "Going the Distance". Black Enterprise. p. 116. Retrieved May 23, 2013.
- Ann Quigley (May 2001). "Six degrees of separation". eLearn Magazine. Retrieved May 23, 2013.
- Sue Shellenbarger (May 27, 2009). "Asking for Money Instead of Gifts". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved May 23, 2013.
- Anne Fisher (October 26, 2012). "Online degrees: Separating the solid from the flimsy". CNN. Retrieved May 23, 2013.
- "The Virtual Classroom Vs. The Real One". Forbes Magazine. September 11, 2000. Retrieved May 23, 2013.
- Carol Lloyd (August 2, 2009). "Online education comes into its own". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved May 23, 2013.
- Irene Chang (August–September 2008). "Online Ed Gets an A+". Working Mother. Retrieved May 23, 2013.
- Make Money Teaching Online: How to Land Your First Academic Job, Build Credibility, and Earn a Six-Figure Salary. John Wiley & Sons. 2011. Retrieved May 23, 2013.
- Ryan Singel (May 13, 2004). "U.S. Officials Sport Fake Degrees". Wired Magazine. Retrieved May 23, 2013.
- Jeffrey Gangemi Dale Bolger (August 18, 2005). "Do Online MBAs Make the Grade?". BusinessWeek. Retrieved June 12, 2013.
- Emily Driscoll (January 4, 2013). "Do You Have What it Takes to be an Online Student?". Fox News. Retrieved May 23, 2013.
- Martha C. White (May 21, 2013). "The $7,000 Computer Science Degree — and the Future of Higher Education". Time Magazine. Retrieved May 23, 2013.
- Ryan Singel (February 2, 2005). "Database Fights Diploma Mills". Wired Magazine. Retrieved May 23, 2013.
- David Lazarus (November 2, 2010). "Getting an education in learning over the Internet". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved May 23, 2013.
- David Wade (December 24, 2012). "Online College Courses Falling Short?". Retrieved June 12, 2013.
- Ric Romero (January 14, 2013). "Taking online courses? You're missing out on college experience, experts say". ABC News. Retrieved May 23, 2013.
- Vicky Phillips and Cindy Yager (1998). The best distance learning graduate schools: earning your degree without leaving home. Random House. Retrieved May 23, 2013.
- Vicky Phillips (2000). Never Too Late to Learn: The Adult Student's Guide to College. Random House. Retrieved May 23, 2013.
- Vicky Phillips (May 5, 1999). "Internet changing economics of higher education". CNN. Retrieved May 23, 2013.
- Keagan Harsha (October 13, 2009). "Vermont Dog Earns College Degree". CBS. Retrieved June 12, 2013.
- Mark Ramirez (October 1, 2009). "Dog sniffs out diploma mills". Times Union. Retrieved June 12, 2013.
- John Hendel (June 28, 2011). "Can a dog still earn an MBA?". CNN. Retrieved June 12, 2013.
- John Hendel (June 27, 2011). "Inside an Online MBA Diploma Mill". Poets and Quants. Retrieved June 12, 2013.