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Top-ranked colleges illegally conspire to limit financial aid offers, lawsuit alleges

January 10, 2022

All 16 universities named in the lawsuit are current or former members of the 568 Presidents Group, a group formed in 1998 by more than two dozen college leaders to collaborate on a need-based financial aid system. The name references the section of federal law that allows colleges to work together on financial aid formulas.

The case is the latest shockwave to hit admissions practices at selective colleges. The recent Varsity Blues scandal, in which wealthy parents secured spots for their children through fraudulent athletic profiles and bribes to college officials, exposed how well-heeled families could manipulate admissions practices. And the U.S. Supreme Court is considering whether to take up a challenge to race-conscious admissions policies at Harvard University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

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