Though it reads sort of like B-roll from that SNL sketch where Fred Armisen is like "YOU GOTTA LEARN COMPUTER," this is actually a 15-second promo spot for the now-defunct FastTrain chain of for-profit colleges, which at its peak operated seven campuses across Florida by way of—according to federal and state authorities—stripper recruiters, falsified high school diplomas and fraudulent FAFSA and Pell Grant paperwork to the tune of over $6 million (much of which they allegedly kept for themselves).
The Miami Herald reports that FastTrain CEO Alejandro Amor has been charged with conspiracy and theft of government money. Amor lived in a $2 million waterfront home in Coral Gables and owned a yacht and private plane, all while running a company that allegedly did things like tell students they could get high school diplomas by taking a FastTrain-provided exam, and then give them fake diploma certificates from "Cornerstone Christian Academy."
Meanwhile, he dusted over his tracks a little bit by donating to state politicians in both the Republican and Democratic parties, as well as Charlie Crist's independent party campaign.
The FBI raided the strip-mall campuses on May 2012, and the "schools" were closed by July. As details emerge about their egregiously fraudulent predation on a vulnerable student body, it appears to me that hiring strippers to recruit for them is by far the least shady thing FastTrain did. From one sad Yelp review of their Miami campus:
It's pretty expensive to attend this "prestigious" technical school, and so they offer financing options as well as federal aid if you qualify.
Financial aid usually makes it to the students' hands at some point, at least in a legitimate college institution.
At this location, you almost never see a cent of it, and they don't easily hand back what's left over after the expenses for books and tuition have been covered.
People usually apply for financial aid to alleviate their need to work while in school so they can pay rent. These people sincerely never see that money. FastTrain keeps it all and makes desperate excuses not to pay it out.
"I'd definitely go to Phoenix first," she says.
More than 160 former FastTrain students are in default for their loans. Nearly one in five Florida students attends a for-profit college institution.