Resolved Westwood College - LaiHave been pressured into taking high interest loans!

I graduated from Westwood College in July of 2004. I recently received a phone call from a collections agent at Willams & Fudge, stating that the college will want to pursue litigation due to the fact that I am delinquent on my payment of loan to Westwood College, which has since accrued almost 100% from 9,000 USD to $16,000 USD.

It was stated that I should take out a loan, get a new job, or "sell something" to pay for the loan. I was also told that I would have to pay the loan in full, and if I didn't they would have no choice but to take the matter to court, and I would be forced to pay for both sides legal fees.

I moved away from California, and have an unlisted address as well as unlisted number in Alabama. I'm not exactly sure of the means that they have used to acquire this information, as the home and phone number are not in my name.

All of that aside...

The problem that I have with this experience is that the school came to me less than a week before my graduation, and stated that they had "undercharged" me for various services such as books, lab fees, etc. The amount they said that they had undercharged me was approximated 9000 USD, and I would not be allowed to graduate had I not paid this off somehow.

They offered me a high interest loan, and said that unless I could find a personal loan, I would be not be able to graduate as I would not have qualified for Sally Mae loans so close to graduation. I was told that I should have been meeting with my financial adviser (my original had left about a year after I had started classes) along the way to check the progress of my loans. I believe that if I was "undercharged" the school should have found that out in the first place, instead of treating me like I am the criminal for this action that they were paying employees to perform.

In my naivety I agreed to the loan, and have since been in hell trying to have this issue resolved. I believe that this is a scam, and I have since gained immense financial advice, but unfortunately, I wasn't aware of what was happening at the time. I was 20 at the time, young, and I didn't know any better, which is apparently exactly what Westwood looks for in its victims.

I am looking for other students who have been pressured into taking these high interest loans mere days or weeks before graduation, or any link to anyone I can find who is currently preparing or in the process of a class action lawsuit against Westwood College for these activities.

Thank you for your time.

Responses

  • Sh
    Sharonica Denise Shelton Mar 07, 2007
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    Please discontinue or cancel the amount for some kind of magazine offer coming out of my checking account. All I wanted to do was request some information for the Medical Asst. course at the college.

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  • Pa
    Paul Guise Mar 14, 2007
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    HA! I just received a call from Williams and Fudge today saying that I owed that school money (I attended Westwood College Online). About 2 months into my education, they said that none of my loans went through and that I owed them $12,000. The reason, they said, was because of an error and that it took that long to get back to me about it. I called BS on them, dropped classes, and told them to forget the whole thing as it was entirely their fault.

    Then I receive the call today from W&F saying I owe them and to pay it or face "further action".

    I would like to talk further with you about this so please hit me up with an email. I would be interested in starting or joining a class action lawsuit against them.

    Cheers

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  • Do
    Dolores Chavez Apr 08, 2007
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    Hello I was just replying to your story. I have a similar story, although mine is a little different. I went to Fox College and I guess they granted me a private loan. At the time, I didn't know anything about this. I thought that all my loans had been granted by sallie mae, but apparently they weren't. Due to this the other private loan went to collection, which is Williams & Fudge. My original balance was about $6,500 and NOW is $11,000 or higher. I don't know how I would pay this amount. It will never happen unless I won the lottery. I tried by giving $250 monthly but after discovering that out of the $250, only $50 was going to my actual balance and $200 worth of interest. This was a waste of money. I now have a baby and can't afford giving this much. The balance will never go down, meanwhile they are getting most of the money. This is really messing up my life and stressing me out, I even regret going to college & while I'm here breaking my head on how I could pay MY ORIGINAL BALANCE ($6,492). The amount continues to increase, it's ridiculous!

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  • So
    Sonia Sauceda Apr 24, 2007
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    My boyfriend was in a similar situation. He enrolled into Westwood College in Chicago in 2004. He attended the school for about 3 months. I questioned the school when I took a glance at his assignments. It just didn't seem like his homework had anything to do with law enforcement. So I immediately started my own investigation. I called the Chicago Police Academy and asked if they accepted Westwood associate diploma for their program and they said they didn't. I called DePaul University and asked an adviser if they accepted transfers from Westwood and she replied that they didn't accept any credits from that school because they weren't nationally accredited. My boyfriend soon after quit his studies at Westwood but weeks after was hit with statements from Westwood and sallie mae.

    According to them he owed Westwood about $4000 and another $3000 to sallie mae. This school is scam
    that preys on people who have little knowledge on colleges and finances.

    Please let me know if you had any luck finding people who are trying to fight this and help others before they make the same mistake.

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  • Fo
    Former Bank employee May 13, 2007
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    I believe everything you said about westwood college. Westwood college is the worst school out there and someone should do something to stop them.I attended Westwood for one year and had a similar story. The instructors were complete garbage and don't deserve to teach anything. Everyone there is so unorganized and pressure new students to take out personal loans. PLEASE SOMEONE HAS TO STOP THEM!!!

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  • Ch
    Chris Walker May 24, 2007
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    I have filed a complaint with the Better Business Bureau about Westwood College Online... I have had a similar experience with them... They said that I now owe over $3000, and they have now submitted my balance to a collection agency. They have never given me an itemized bill detailing the classes that I took, and how much they cost. All they have given me are lump sums for books, classes, online fees, etc... I suggest that you all also file complaints with the Better Business Bureau... You can go to their website at http://www.bbb.org.

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  • Ti
    Timothy Stewart May 31, 2007
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    I was online trying to find a good place to get college loans, so i could attend Westwood online. And wow look what i stumbled across. I am glad i read this before making a decision, sorry for the people that got screwed over, thanks for posting this so i could see head of time.

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  • Ca
    Catherine Fergerson Aug 02, 2007
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    Hi I am having similar problems with there online courses. After being enrolled for 2 years, screenshots that I am not the only one having issues with their education or lack there of, the amount of money ect, I finally got a hold of the person I should talk to about a refund. Well, he believes a refund is not necessary. I am currently transferring to a new College. I told them I am will to fight them on this, and am very much looking for a lawyer for a class action lawsuit against them. If you are still interested, please email me at [email protected] and tell me a little about yourself. Anyone interested at all, should try to contact me.

    Thanks,
    Catherine Fergerson.

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  • Ja
    Jason Tuttle Aug 09, 2007
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    Hind-sight is 20-20, isn't it? Usually I am very good at researching and checking facts before jumping head first into waters such as these. I have seen another sight with people voicing similar complaints about Westwood College. I began this farce of a school about two and a half years ago. I had to leave the school in January due to a cross-country move. I just received a letter informing me that I was delinquent on a loan with them (I thought everything was through Sallie Mae). They have now sent my information to a collection agency. You guessed it, Williams and Fudge. The thing is, the letter was dated the 19th of July, the letter was not sent out until the 26th of July, it had to be paid by the 31st of July, and I received the letter on the 8th of August. Coincidence? Probably not. The educational value of this school is laughable. The courses are not designed by the instructors. The instructors are merely following guidelines and really have no clue about the lesson plans, the quizzes, or the tests. I can't believe I was duped by this horrible institution (if you can call it that). I think Catherine has it right. People need to act before others fall prey to false promises.

    Jason Tuttle.

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  • Ca
    Catherine VR Sep 26, 2007
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    I, too, attended Westwood College in Chicago, IL and realized that they are NOT nationally accredited as I request tuition reimbursement through my employer. After 3 months of school, I dropped, trasnferred to Depaul and surprise! surprise! Depaul did not and will not accept transcripts from Westwood, so back to sqaure one for me.

    After dropping, I was told by their financial advisor that my loan was not approved and had to pay the full amount. I don't have that kind of money and tried to work out a monthly payment plan but Westwood refused and sent my student loans through Williams & Fudge (they are not helpful, in any way), where for about a year, have been arguing with them because they choose NOT to sent a detailed summary of classes, books/labs or whatever fees accumlated while I was there for 3 months.

    Also, the teachers are a joke - the schoolwork was and is a joke - I do not recommend this school. People need to do research before falling prey on empty promises and dreams.

    I would like to be involved in a class action lawsuit towards Westwood College, so please contact me: [email protected]

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  • Cr
    Crystal Sep 28, 2007
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    Hey wait a minute! I attended Westwood College too. I have to tell you guys that my experience and that of all my classmates at Westwood College have been GREAT! Yes, there are some teachers that are better than others, but the reality is...it happens at every college in America. I know, I have attended a couple of other schools where the service, well let's say, there was none. In other words, students had to figure out there own financial aid, students had to pick their own classes, and frankly most students would not ever graduate. I know Westwood College is not perfect, but the quality of the education I personally receieved is excellent. Overall, I would do it again AND I would reccommend the college to others. I would also encourage people to do their own reseach not only about Westwood College, but about other colleges....you will find there will ALWAYS be a complaint about EVERY school out there. Trust me...no college is perfect.

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  • Me
    Mel S. Oct 02, 2007
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    Yes Westwood College have some of the most amazing professors, however the part stated that:
    "students had to figure out there own financial aid"
    that is exactly what you are doing at Westwood, because you go from own one amount to another amount where you have basically paid for two extra terms due to the high interest rates student loans.

    I went through and still going through the same issues at Westwood. I attended the Chicago Loop Campus from Aug. 2005-March 2007. It felt like every term they would went up on the tuition, and i would get this letter that said that had to take yet another student loan to cover my balance and still pay the $110 school monthly tuition.

    I was looking to apply for an internship in law and was told that they could not hire me because because of the accreditation. The same thing happen to my friend after he graduated from Westwood and could not find a job. I transferred and went to East-West University, because that was the only college besides Devry who would accept the credits.

    However, Westwood would not release my transcripts , claiming that I owed the school $16,000 which was not true, it took almost six months to get my transcripts. The reason behind this email is that students are sending complaints to Department of Education Inspector General's office
    (http://www.ed.gov/about/offices/list/oig/hotline.html?src=ct) and sending e-mails and letters to anyone is who will to listen (newspapers, News stations ) to protect students form the things Westwood students are dealing with now.

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  • We
    Westwood is TERRIBLE Oct 03, 2007
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    I recently graduated from Westwood in Chicago and about 7 months after I recieved my diploma I got a letter in the mail from Williams & Fudge. The letter stated that I owe around $22,000 and that if I didn't pay within 30 days that I would be reported to the credit bureau. I immediately called Sallie Mae, who I thought all of my loans were through, and they told me that I was current on my account and there was no problem. So then I called Williams & Fudge because obviously there is some mistake. They explained to me that they were hired by Westwood to collect on tuition that was never recieved. Somewhere in my "wonderful" experience with Westwood I was duped into signing something, I was never informed that I was supposed to be paying ANYTHING, and never even contacted about these so called "Apex" loans.

    I am now in the process, with no help from Westwood, to figure out what happened and how I owe so much. The recruing interest on Westwood loans is about 18 percent. So within just a few months I have gone from a principal balance of $16,000 to $22,000.

    I want to warn anyone thinking about going to Westwood College not to do it. Sure the instructors are nice, the classes are easy, you barely even have you use your brain. But the money that you owe in the end is not at all worth it. Plus they are not even nationally accredited like they make you think.

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  • Eu
    Eugene Torres Oct 22, 2007
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    I've sent e-mail to Catherine up above stating my problem with the school pulling what seems to me like a bait-and-switch regarding their proficiency exams.

    I've also stress concern to the school about the quality of the education they provide. Don't get me wrong they have some great instructors, but more than that, I've had instructors there that I knew more about the material than them.

    I've been attending for about 2.5 years and recently switched my program from the bachelor's to associates due to time restrictions and personal and professional obligations. Doing this change made it so I had 2 classes left to take, one being a history class, that I already have credit that could be applied to and substitute it. The other was a public speaking class with a proficiency exam available for it.

    At first they were accommodating (sounded like it), but as time grew nearer to the start of the new term, the less i heard from them until the term started. All they told me was to register for the proficiency exam for this one class and that should be it, so I do it... I mean they're my "advisor's", right? Days later, the then tell me i can't take the proficiency exam, because there's a "deadline" and it would remove me from school. They said it was in their student catalog (restrictions, etc on proficiency exams). There was information, but nothing that they told me regarding deadlines, or attendance status. I can't login to my class, because if I do, i would get disqualified from being able to take the exam. They go on to tell me that testing takes place in weeks 4 and 8 every term. IF I don't post attendance for 14 consecutive days, I automatically get booted from school, but if I post attendance, then I can't take the exam, and must pay full price for the class...

    I spoke to a director, and he said he'd get back to me, which he didn't. He sent someone else to be the bearer of bad news, which was in order to graduate with that joke of a degree from them, I'd have to attend two classes to have financial aide pay for it, or I can attend that one class, and pay out of pocket for it.

    I'm interested in any legal action that may take place to correct this school's bad practices, or even revoke their "accreditation."

    DO NOT ATTEND THIS SCHOOL.

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  • Je
    Jeremiah Nov 08, 2007
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    I went to Westwood Online for a while (about a term) when I realized the school was nothing to me and that I wanted to do something else (was separated from the Air Force) so I went to my recruiter and was able to rejoin. So I figured, fine I made the mistake, I'll pay for the little bit of student loans I used. Well, now I get a thing from Williams & Fudge saying I owe $921 to westwood.

    Never received a bill or anything, just that $921 is in collections and I have to pay. They give a login account to check the balance and pay and whatnot, I cannot login to. I am calling BS on all of this because student loans should take care of everything school wise. Even if it didn't I should have received a bill a long time ago stating I owe $921.

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  • Ma
    MARILYN Dec 17, 2007
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    Yes westwood is overly priced I attend the atlanta midtown location they charge over $200 for books alone. I am really thinking they are a scam. They dont have the proper items to run such as presentation stands scanners and computers and recently a man got fired from that location because he had gun in class and the instructor didnt have a real degree and was teaching at the school. There really is something wrong with that.

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  • He
    Heather Barron Dec 20, 2007
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    I sent the original complainer an email and I just thought I would let you all know that I am in the same boat now. When I attended westwood I was paying about $110 a month for tuition fees and the financial aid was supposed to do the rest for me. Two classes away from graduation, they told me I owed about $16,000 or so!! They locked me out of my online classes, tried to make me get personal loans, and about a month later Williams and Fudge was calling me! The financial advisor was a major b*&( and didn't even want to hear what I had to say or work something out! Anyway, I stopped paying westwood right away and have just taken the hits on my credit for the past 3 years! I can't even get a Kohls credit card! And I work there! I would like to do something about this, if anyone wants to contact me my email is [email protected] I would really like to stick it to this crappy school! Thanks

    Heather.

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  • Al
    Alan Burchardt Jan 02, 2008
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    Westwood is the biggest scam for sure i got screwed by them of course they sent me a bill for 24,880.40 saying i still owed them 6,946.69 which sallemae loans didnt cover i contacted sallemae and they told me westwood was sent 30,028.00 i called them back and told them that and they changed there story telling me they did receive the money from sallemae but insisted i still owed 6,946.69 i told them sallemae told me to have westwood call them to straighten it out they ignored me and talked over me then i asked what the real balance was they couldnt tell me said they needed time to get the info and kept insisting that the bill which they didnt remember sending me was wrong. They emailed me a new bill the day after which came too 36,946.69 which was completely different and didnt match up at all they said it was a "Computer error" on there part and this is the real bill. Things here in florida are bad and i havent been able to find a job but they put the 6,946.69 into collections with Williams & Fudge collection agency and they contacted me by mail asking me if im disputeing the money with westwood in which i told them i was then they called afew weeks after acting like i never mailed them to dispute the money in which i sent them 2 more letters on it and then finally they called me agian and i told her im still disputing it the person i spoke too said well i'll make a note of that but it will not matter westwood will get there money one way or another and they hung up on me. And now i'm still stuck with that money i owe westwood that collection agency charges 18pct per month on any money so the money i owe is well over 8,5k. Not to metion all the money which is in federal loans with sallemae which atleast i can deffer since i dont have a job and havent been able to get one. And they have completely changed there story from the begining they really should be investigated

    If there credits really are as worthless as all the other people ive heard who've been scammed by westwood, where all paying thousands of dollars for "Nothing" how can it be justified to charge someone over 3.6k for 18 months of college with no degree and credits which cant be tranfered when they advertise that crap about being nationally acredited that in itself is a false advertisement.

    I've tried contacting newspapers on this whole situation ive gone though and no one seems to care what so ever. I guess they won't help consitering that over 30 of the states gov's get kickbacks from sallemae and westwood is just a well organized goverment scam to fill the pockets of goverment official's is there no justice anymore.

    If anyone has taken them to court over it and won I sure would appreciate help cause it all seems hopeless to me this not only drained me mentally all the phone tag trying to find out what to do and how to go about it but it all seems to just be a dead end at every turn my emails [email protected] if you wanna talk you can add me to msn too.

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  • Mi
    Michael Jan 06, 2008
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    I'm facing a similar situation, only I attended for almost two and a half years. In that period I accumulated loans through Sallie Mae of just over $49,000.00 and the program cost was $60,000.00. Had I finished the last year that I had left I would've accumulated loans for the total progam cost and I had financial aid assistance as well. Well, then I decided to transfer to another college and was told by several colleges and universities that they would not accept credits from Westwood College that they weren't nationally accredited. I then talked to Mr. Polland at Westwood and he said that he had a student transfer credits to Jones University. Well who and what the hell is Jones University??? I too am looking for more information to file a class action lawsuit. If anyone has anything that can help please let me know. The admissions rep. that signed me up at Westwood College is no longer employed there but he and I became good friends from the get go and he has found out things that he wished he never got involved with and would also like to get in on this as he signed up a lot of students that he now wants to help out of this situation.

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  • Am
    Amaris M Jan 08, 2008
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    My experience with Westwood wasnt too good either. I enrolled, did the whole nine and was sent a letter saying that financial aid was paying $7,000 or so ... and all I had to pay out of my pocket was a few hundred dollars. I was getting emails saying that I was NOT APPROVED for a loan. I got about 10 of these emails. Well the day before the term started I got an email with an attachement... at the very bottom it said that if it is not signed they will assume that I agree with the $7000 LOAN! In none of my conversations with the financial aid rep did he mention that the $7ooo was a LOAN. I was under the assumption that it was a grant... considering I got tons of emails saying I was not approved for the loan. I recently discontinued my enrollement at Westwood, told them about my findings on the Better Business Bureau... 24 complaints in the last 36 months!! Can you believe that?? I also told them I want an itemization of what I was charged and what financial aid paid for. I only attended Westwood Online for 3 terms but I'm still so mad that I waisted my time... especially if my credits are not accepted by the college I have my eye on.

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  • Al
    Alan Burchardt Jan 08, 2008
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    We should all find out how to file a class action lawsuit and do it together thats the only way we will see any justice in our behalf.

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  • Ad
    Adam Parker Jan 14, 2008
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    I have a similar story to mostly everyone here, I attended Westwood College Online for 3 months before getting completely fed-up with it and quitting. Due to circumstances in my life at the time, I had to immediately drop 2 of my initial 4 classes within the first week. I then stayed at part-time for the duration of my 3 months in class.

    After informing my student advisor of my decision to drop Westwood altogether (a thought that I had been seriously considering even BEFORE my first day of class, and one that I had discussed at length with my various advisors at Westwood.), I was told that my next set of classes had been scheduled, and I need to attend them.

    I chose not to attend, having already stated my intent to withdraw.

    Unlike some few others who've reported good experiences with their instructors, the ones I had were not so great. There were many times where there was a heavily imbalanced slant to the opinions they would offer us, as though they were fact. Students who offered up valid points on a discussion were, on occasion, belittled before the class for voicing them. Basically, a rather unfairly biased environment.

    So after 3 months, and only 2 classes during that time, I quit. I later get a notice from Sallie Mae stating my Principal amount as somewhere over $1,000.00, but under 2k. I think, Ok, fine... I'm not happy about any of it in the least, but at least I won't be broke when it's all over.

    That was around July/August 2007.

    It's now January 14, 2008, and according to Sallie Mae, I owe in excess of $6,000.00!

    FOR TWO CLASSES OVER THREE MONTHS!?

    So, everywhere I look online about this I hear people begging for a Class-Action against Westwood, and I've yet to find one.
    Something NEEDS to be done to stop Westwood, and annul all this debt they have wrongly put all of us into.

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  • Al
    Alan Burchardt Jan 15, 2008
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    Well the thing they also have been doing which ive noticed while making payments is they keep any account which they have with the school at a rate of intreset that is 18pct the same as what they have there collection agency at if you have sent in a payment of 250 dollars a month you'll notice little to no decrease in your account thats because at 18pct your intreset is over 300 dollars a month and thats how they sucker people not only that but. if you have loans setup on sallemae they keep withdrawing on them and dont stop i was lucky enough my parents got sallemae to stop sending them money without autherization cause they took out loans in my name after getting over 20k from my parents so there still after me for money and since i cant find work to pay it off and the interest is so high that you'd have to pay all at once to even attempt to pay it off i'm stuck and burnt paying for nothing since schooling at westwood isn't worth anything. the thing im wondering is how long will it go on before they stop it and shut down the school cause you cant really call it a "school" all it is really is a collection agency all they do is collect your money if they dont get it though loans they get it by intreset.

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  • Pe
    peggyw Jan 16, 2008
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    I am GLAD i encountered this thread!! I WAS 2 days away from signing up with Westwood Online. Had my initial interview by the perky receptionist / interviewer type person. she was very young (if i could tell anything over the phone) and i figured something might be up when i was told to sign the "letter of intent" they'd email me, within 48 hours.

    It's hard to see my dreams die here but it'd be much cheaper if i went elsewhere. THANK YOU for your warnings. You've saved one here. I realize no college is perfect but i cannot afford to have 70-75k hanging over my head.

    I asked on NUMEROUS occasions during the interview call about 1) job placement and 2) accreditation, should i decide to move on to a masters degree or further. i was ASSURED on all occasions that this would be no problem as they were accredited by the National Accreditation whatever...

    I was told the particular program for which i was interested would cost a "grand total" of around $70-75k, but they would try their "best to get it down to zero!" i suppose i should have asked what's going to zero - the monthly balance owed or my bank account?

    They're good, but i'm checking up on them before anything further.

    I work in the legal field now and i can tell you guys, "if it were me" and let's say "i" were seeking anything from Westwood or Wms & Fudge as far as records or confirmation of anything, "i" would send correspondence to Westwood via certified mail, returned receipt requested (so that you have signature and date signed for - this way they cannot dispute they never got it.) that's what "i" would do, get me? - and document, document, document!! send EVERYTHING certified mail AND regular mail and note same on your correspondence or requests - put the certified article # on the BOTTOM of the letter ("certified article # ____") so they can't dispute it. also be sure to state in your letter(s) that you expect a response within 14 calendar days, after which time your attorney will be following up with them (they don't know you have one or not, mind you -it gets their attention!).

    I wonder if Westwood isn't a front for the collection firm of Wms & Fudge? What a racket! I'm unemployed now - maybe i should hit up Wms & Fudge for a job?! FOFL

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  • Pe
    peggyw Jan 16, 2008
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    As a result of reading posts here and elsewhere, here is my response to the young lady who interviewed me this evening. Please note, i do not mince words and i find directness is best in these issues:

    Dear XXXXXXX-

    I appreciate your contact earlier today; however, I've decided to sign up with another college. PLEASE WITHDRAW MY UNFINISHED APPLICATION AND CEASE ALL FURTHER PAPERWORK OR INQUIRIES ON MY BEHALF. Please also remove my information from your database. I will ask you to not continue to submit anything to anyone or any company or firm on my behalf, nor to continue with any paperwork or loans or applications involving me or using my name and social security and personal information. I am not interested in continuing with the financial aid and/or application process for Westwood College Online or Westwood College.

    Thank you for taking time to speak with me. I do appreciate your time; I'm sorry I cannot continue to enroll.

    Since I have not submitted a finished application, given my consent or approval for textbooks or materials to be sent to me, nor signed the Letter of Intent, I expect no further calls, or bills of any sort from any branch, representative, division or office of Westwood College or of Williams & Fudge. Thank you.

    Sincerely,
    xxxxx xxxxx

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  • Jo
    John Habenstien Jan 17, 2008
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    I disagree, I spoke to someone at Westwood College that was very informitive, explained everything very well. I just started my second year and everything has been great. School is going to cost money and yes there is interest when loans are involved. School no matter where you go is going to cost money. The online program provides Convenience, Quality Education & Flexibility. So bottom line I Love Westwood.

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  • Da
    Darrell Jan 17, 2008
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    I completely agree that Westwood is nothing more than an elaborate scam.
    I attended Westwood Online for one and a half years and they claim that I owe them nearly $16,000 on top of the $20,000 that my student loan paid them. The weird thing is that I was out of school for more than six months before they even made this claim. And when they did start sending me bills the information on the bills said that they were requesting money for my third year. I hadn't even completed my second year so how can I owe them anything for a third year? I don't remember my degree being in temporal physics...
    These people still to this date have not sent me an itemized bill telling me where all this extra debt came from - I guess I'm just supposed to take their word for it. I may have been stupid enough to sign up to this "school" but I'm not that stupid.
    I agree that Westwood should be sued. At best they are an execrable school with a complete lack of organizational skills. It was extremely common for their server to completely lock up right when you were trying to submit an assignment. This happened to me dozens of times. I spent half an hour once just trying to submit an assignment.
    When my financial aid ran out I kept getting ridiculously uninformed emails. I was locked out of my classes but one person kept emailing me telling me that I would be "administratively withdrawn" from all of my classes if I didn't submit an assignment by such and such date. But I couldn't submit an assignment because I was blocked from my classes...

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  • Mo
    Monique Harrell Jan 18, 2008
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    Hi
    I have a similar situation, with william and fudge. I went to Florida Atlantic University and I left the school after 9/11 because of problems with the school. After I left I was getting notices that I owed money to the school in fact most of my money was with citibank or wachoiva, I never used private loans. I keep getting phone calls from William and Fudge that I owe wait a minute over 1700 and that my account was in collections. I told the lady that I left FAU and that I never took out a private loan at all through FAU.
    See the picture here. I am going to contact BBB and also Dont call because I am not paying for a loan that I never took out.
    Monique

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  • Jo
    John B Jan 23, 2008
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    I agree Westwood is a scam, I have attended Westwood for two years and got my B.S. The problem started when I was in one of my classes and was called into financial aid telling me none of my loas went through. This was like 3 terms after I have started, I asked why didn't they tell me this before, I would have stopped going to that school to avoid anymore accumulations.
    Plus I was told by a professor who use to work there that he was forbidden to teach anymore then what the school requires. He stated that his job with Westwood was threaten many times for "teaching" too much. Also I had a professor who just sat at his desk and told us to read the chapter and do the assignment, that was it. When we asked questions he replied "the answer you need is in the book." This professor had no clue about animation, he specialized in graphic design. That was truly a waste of a class.
    NOW going back to financial aid, somehow the advisor found a way to get money for me but not the amount I needed. He asked if I have anyone with good credit to co-signed in which I replied my brother in law in the Army. His credit is clean and its guaranteed moneysince he is working for the US government. Well guess what, it was denied, so I tried my sister who is a nurse and is making decent amount of money, again denied. I asked the advisor "why?" he said he didn't know. So this advisor "tried really hard" to get me a loan and wouldn't you know it, that ### ending up quiting leaving my high and dry. So here is the best part, my paperwork was given to another advisor who had no idea what was happening to my stuff. My graduation comes and I have been in talks with this so-called "advisor" trying to find a loan, again. Well nothing went through and here I was already at my pitiful graduation held at what looked like a VFW hall. The advisor was sitting up on stage with the clan of Westwood socialites looking stupid. After I got my diploma and everyone was congradulating one another for getting out of that hell hole guess who has the gall to come up and start talking to me about loans. My sister intervened asking why is she bringing this up now during graduation? The advisor, who didn't know who my sister was, started to explain my situation to my her about how much I owe and that there was some paperwork that she needed from me. All this she saying aloud infront of everyone around, I felt embarassed this happened. My sister got pissed and told her she can get that info later, not during graduation. The advisor was mad and told me that she no longer wanted anything from me anymore. What kind of school does that to one person and guess who keeps calling? Fudge brownies or whoever they are asking for $30k. I explained to them that I was going to try and find a loan consolidation company(which I am not if this class act goes through). The lady working with me is really nice but I have no intentions to pay them back after all that bullspit I went through. If there is a class action suit let meknow I want in. I know a few other "classmates" who would love to help out. My email is [email protected]

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  • Al
    Alan Burchardt Jan 30, 2008
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    Filing with the BBB is pointless they didnt do anything what so ever for me i've tried seaking help from channel 8 news house of repusentitives govener and all but nothing at all helped and the bbb just brushed it off they waited for westwood to respond which was the SAME exact thing they responded with to the govener saying that the bill i was sent on a privious date was a mistake and that the new bill was over 39k I bet they use that excuse for alot of people " oh it was a computer error" mean while ive been trying to get a job and getting no calls back and i'm a month or 2 away from loosing my house but they dont give a crap all they want is payments on the balance and keep making threats that if i dont pay its going back into collections. On top of that you cant ever contact them directly everytime i call i get an answering machine and have to wait till 6pm pst for them to call me meaning they must only be in there office for 30 mins at max wasnt any different with the collection agency i have no doubts that william fudge is westwood but you know what theres nothing we can do cause the goverment must be involved because other websites who had reports like this agianst westwood have been wipped and paid off and no one will help you its a well organized goverment related scam cause theres no other way this kind of unjustice could go on for over a year and everyone shut there ears and eyes to the corruption for so long all i can say is for all thoughs who haven't gone and are thinking of going reconsiter go to a community college before you get your life ruined by westwood like i have my educations flushed down the toilet and chances are this forum might eventually be wipped of all cases just like ripofreport.

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  • Nk
    N.K. Feb 11, 2008
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    I am also a victim of Westwood and Williams & Fudge. The funny thing is, I never even attended a single class with this school. A few years ago, I started receiving calls from Cynthia Coopit, a recruiter for Westwood Online. I must have stupidly entered my contact information into some "interested in classes online?" form god-knows-where when I was researching interior design programs. This woman kept me on the phone for over an hour talking about how great Westwood is, and asking me all sorts of questions..getting to know me. She was good at her job, I can tell you that. Anyway, after a week of multiple phone calls, emails, even instant messages from this woman, I agreed to at least "register" while I was researching the school, so that we could "get the ball rolling" in time for the new semester. She told me I could withdraw my registration before classes started if I changed my mind, and I would be refunded my registration fee short of $25, no big deal.

    I filled out some sort of online application and within a day my phone was blowing up with people trying to get my classes scheduled, loans approved, etc. When I realized Westwood wasn't even accredited in Interior Design (a week or less after my initial phone call from the recruitor), I withdrew my registration, cut off all contact with the school and after waiting 2 or 3 months, was refunded my $75.

    Over a year later I started receiving calls from Williams & Fudge stating that I owed Westwood about $500. They couldn't tell me what it was for and mysteriously had ZERO contact information for someone at Westwood who could tell me. I told them I never attended the school, and that I never got a bill from Westwood in the first place...of course they didn't care. The best I could come up with online was Westwood's customer service line, and from there I was repeatedly forwarded to, you guessed it...answering machines! No one from Westwood ever returns my calls, but over 2 years since this original "registration", Williams & Fudge calls me twice a day, everyday! I'm scared to find out what my $500 has accumulated in interest. I stopped answering their calls a long time ago.

    I know $500 is peanuts compared to what some of these other posters have been taken to the cleaners for, but it's still the principle that I refuse to pay a single dollar to this "school" that I do not owe them. i never took a class! I never applied for loans or aid! I never got books! This establishment is financially raping young adults all over the country and it blows my mind that nothing has been done about it.

    I would also like to be contacted my anyone pursuing legal action, and I will be emailing the above posters shortly.

    [email protected]

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  • Je
    Jeffrey Feldman Feb 18, 2008
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    I got a call from Williams & Fudge. It seems that Westwood "forgot" to add my military tuition benefits that were paid to them and now are coming after me. I tried twice to deal with the school - and they'd go away for a few months before coming back with the same old argument.

    I have a plan -

    1. Do a cease and desist letter to Williams & Fudge or any collection agency. You ARE NOT required to do business with them. Make sure you send it certified mail. Once they are in receipt - they cannot legally contact you any more.

    2. If they put any collection accounts on your credit report, dispute it. It is NOT your account. I/we had an account with the school, but no written agreement with Williams & Fudge. Fight this issue hard.

    3. Get a legal service plan. This will most likely save you and give you cheap peace of mind. Mine is through US Legal Services. Prepaid legal is another. They will handle this issue. They want to take you/me to court? Bring it. We'll fight back (countersue)

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  • La
    Lana Feb 19, 2008
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    Hey guys, My fiance` is caught up in the Westwood online mess. He had taken a loan from Sallie Mae not from Westwood however both parties came after him for default. Sallie Mae was being paid until Westwood contacted him stating that Sallie Mae never paid them and he owed Westwood like 20k. Then Sallie Mae stated they paid and he owed then 20k. Westwood had the same story that he just needed to take out a loan or get a better job to pay it. He also is experiencing trouble getting another job. I am going to turn our matters over to a lawyer due to the fact they are all full of it and his credit is destroyed now!

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  • Tr
    Tribulations Apr 10, 2008
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    Um, I had an interviewer come to my school about a week ago for Westwood college and i signed up with them and have to take the test In 2 days. After reading all this I do not want to go through with it. What should I do about this? Can I still get out of this clean or are they going to slap like $500 on me?

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  • Da
    Darrell Apr 20, 2008
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    This is a continuation of my above post.
    I filed a complaint with the Better Business Bureau. I requested a copy of every document Westwood possesed bearing my signature. I had to make this request four times before Westwood finally sent me these documents. Does this seem like the reaction of an honest reputable company? This seems to me to be more like the actions of a company with something to hide.
    When I got the documents half of them had been altered. Westwood added dollar amounts to some of the enrollment agreements. The date at the top of another enrollment agreement was covered up with white-out and Westwood wrote another date in its place. One of the enrollment agreements is lacking a signature. Westwood also lied about the promissory note. Westwood claimed that I signed it as soon as I enrolled. I enrolled in August 2005;the promissory note is dated November. Most likely what happened was they sent the promissory note with my Sallie Mae papers knowing that I would think it was for my Sallie Mae loan (The amounts were very similar). I actually have the original of one of these enrollment agreements before it was altered by Westwood.
    These people definitely need to be sued. It looks like that might be the only way I might get these troglodytes off my case...

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  • Ma
    mark v. bonham May 18, 2008
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    Iwent to Westwood because I wanted to take a couple of classes. I inquired about the price and he told me $1500 a class. I said that was too much. He then said, "Well have you ever considered getting an A.S. Degree?" I asked how much for that and he said around $25, 000.00. I got up to leave and he said, "Mark, you don't understand how the system works. See, the government wants you to go to school and will pay you to go by giving you grants. You will recieve two $5, 000 and one $15, 000 grant for being older than 45 years of age. The salesman sold me the bill of goods that he was a Westwood College student representative who would be there for me through the whole process. I was totally snookered! Two months after I enrolled he was gone. As I went through with my comittment off higher education I got worried about these grants. I went into the Westwood business office (whom are always busy) 4 times to ask about my grants to which they replied" Don't worry Mark everything will be handled before you graduate." Well I graduated and wound up owing $28, 000. In a time in my life when I need to be saving money I must give all my extra money to Westwood even though they hired a snake to lie and sell me a "bill of goods" My credit has been ruined and all I can afford is to rent a room for $500 a month and squeek out a meager existance due to the lies and misdirection of Westwood College.

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  • Ms
    M.S. May 19, 2008
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    I have been attending westwood college since August 2006, took a break for 4 months, started receiving calls from william & fudge saying I owed them $3, 000...I told the guy I can't pay it and he said "this will go against your credit" and I simply put "i dont care, I have bad credit anyways, that's why I get student loans and when I graduate, get my job and pay it all off the rest of my life" he was like "ok, it's your life" and hung up on me. Sometimes they still call but I don't answer it..i'm not paying any $3k or NOTHING tilli 'm graduated. You are'nt even supposed to pay any school loans till 6 months after you graduate to help you accommodate yourself in finding a job and saving up the mulah to pay for your student loans. I am currently in debt with Sallie Mae for over $30k and my course is a $70k web design course...the pale grants help with about $2k per semester, which isn't much, especially since i'm low income single mother with state assistance. It's a joke really that they don't offer anymore help to students that are "starving" to get an education. They can do whatever they want, they aren't getting their money till I either graduate or they kick me out. I'm scheduled to graduate in March 2010.

    I do have to say though I have learned alot taking the classes, I am actually a web master for the college's game design club, it's really fun and will give me a great portfolio.

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  • Th
    TH3 D May 21, 2008
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    I would like to Also plead a case against Westwood College not specific to the loan repayment but with the misconception of school merit and credit given with your hard earned degree. I was a Michigan resident who had a situation where I needed to make a decision with my life. At the time I had been considering classes for computer science due to my technical background building and consistent maintenance of home computers I had a telemarketing call come in one afternoon and was met with friendly individual who had all this wonderful news about "Westwood college " I thought I would let the man speak so he went on to ask what my interests are and what it was that I would like to do with the rest of my life and I explained my history and he had even gone to the lengths of confirming this may or may not be a career I would like to do for the rest of my life. I than explained I was a devote video gamer and that I had dabbled with 3D Animation and Video Game "Map Building" with a couple different popular engines that were out at that time. We both agreed that this seemed to be a passion for me and not just a job. He than went into to great detail of the available "on campus" equipment that would be specific to a 3D Animation Game Development degree field and that we would have this available to us at any of the Westwood Campus' nationwide. This my friends seemed like the ticket for me, and I being a vulnerable young adult took it hook line and sinker. Oh wait there is more he also explained to me that this was in fact a Regional Accredited College or "HLC Accreditated" which stands for Higher Learning Accreditation. This accreditation is very important to the consideration for a graduate program and any transfer of credits to a college that even offers a graduate program. Also I have spoken with direct Human Resource supervisors at three different game development studios and confirmed that the degree from "Westwood college" would not have the same integrity as a degree with HLC accredited college or university. I had been faced with some financial difficulties while in attendance at the school and was ultimately removed from the program with 5 months served. In those 5 months it was promised to me that better equipment and resources would become available and that the level of in field teachers or certified instructors ...i.e staff would increase and become better. However this is not the case and I lost hope in a successful career with this school being my vessel toward a degree in this field. I had confirmed 3 months into the program that the school was not in fact accredited as promised and I believe this has happened to others if anyone has a link or url to an open class action lawsuit vs Westwood College please post...

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  • Ja
    jamiesays Jul 22, 2008
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    I took the entry test and paid the $100 application fee just today. Now I'm reading all of this. I did not (to my knowledge) apply for any loans as my parents are going to help out with tuition. Now I'm worried they are going to try to charge me even if I back out now before getting started! I will send a letter tomorrow that I am no longer interested in enrolling. Could they have enrolled me today (I was there for hours) without even realizing it? OMG, I'm worried. Anyone familiar with the school have any advice?

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  • Ni
    Nicholas Espinoza Jul 30, 2008
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    WOW SAME EXPERIENCE as most of these victims. No need to go into detail but I am currently in collections and i was threaten with the same scare tactics as most described. It is currently effecting my credit report. I as well have asked for a detailed statement like many other people here have done and have received no correspondence! I looked and looked and finally found a place with the same type of victims. PLEASE LETS DO SOMETHING ABOUT THIS!! My email IS... [email protected]

    I cant believe some of these stories. This has caused me great damage and its time to ACT i have been dealing with this over 1 year!

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