Stories

The IRE Resource Center is a major research library containing more than 27,000 investigative stories.

Most of our stories are not available for download but can be easily ordered by contacting the Resource Center directly at 573-882-3364 or rescntr@ire.org where a researcher can help you pinpoint what you need.

Search results for "college" ...

  • CALmatters: California’s for-profit college watchdog fails to police as feds back down

    The California agency responsible for overseeing the state’s 1,000-plus for-profit colleges and vocational schools has repeatedly failed or been slow to enforce laws meant to prevent fraud and abuse, leaving a serious gap in accountability as federal regulators back away from the job.
  • Two-Hour Diploma

    “Two-Hour Diploma” started with a late-night hotline tip in February of 2018. Ten months later, at the time of this entry, the shock waves it produced continue to reverberate throughout the state of Maryland. Using deep dive, old-fashioned investigative journalism, this series produced results. A Baltimore high school was shut down after Fox45 enrolled an undercover student who received a diploma in two hours. Multiple state investigations were launched leading to other schools being shut down. Lawmakers, including the Governor, promised legislative action in Annapolis when session opens in January. And Fox45 jumped right through the massive loopholes this investigation exposed by opening our own church and school – right under the state’s nose. Two weeks after filing the paperwork, Good News Academy was certified and approved by the Maryland State Department of Education. As all this was unfolding, investigative reporter Chris Papst was sued by a school operator and physical threats were made against Papst and Fox45 for which the police were called. In an effort to stop the investigation, Fox45’s sources were threatened with violence and had their property vandalized. “Two-Hour Diploma” was produced by Project Baltimore, a team of Fox45 journalists committed to a long-term investigation of education in the Baltimore area.
  • Indian Hills Community College

    The Indian Hills Community College baseball team in Iowa ousted two of its coaches — one of them a hall of fame coach — in May. After a more than four-month investigation, the Daily Iowegian found the coaches were removed after an internal investigation that coaches forced players to work for security companies at NFL and Big 10 games in Minneapolis and Iowa City, all while assigning fake names to foreign-born students so they could work around federal immigration law. The money went to the baseball program, not the players.
  • Where's the party at?

    The Daily Wildcat set out to answer the age old question: where's the party at? Through FOIAs for police records The Daily Wildcat was able to collect data on where the Tucson Police Department had issued red tags, which are the citations for unruly gatherings that are commonly doled out when parties get out of hand. They created a heat map of the red tags issued around campus and created interactive data visualizations on the frequency of when red tags were issued by day of the week and calendar month.
  • Gone Too Soon: Revisiting the 1983 Murder of Joan Ann Charlton – A Comprehensive Collection of Information, 33 Years Later

    In September 1983, a 19-year-old Jamaican-American freshman from Baltimore, Joan Ann Charlton – who would have been the first member of her family to graduate from college – was found dead of multiple stab wounds on Frostburg State’s campus, a crime that was never solved. This student project seems to be the first journalistic coverage of the case of any kind in many years, and is the first comprehensive look at Charlton’s life, death and legacy ever published.
  • Campus Undercovered

    In an investigative mini-series, the NBC News Investigative Unit undertook a deep look at an array of new and under-covered issues on college campuses. It included a first-of-its-kind investigation for a national broadcast network questioning whether on-campus sexual assault tribunals are violating due process rights, including those of alleged perpetrators. It featured a multi-month, nation-wide investigation of college mental health policies, uncovering a trend of students claiming that they have been suspended or expelled for seeking help with mental health issues. It also brought viewers a rare, frank look inside the world of prescription “smart drug” abuse. In each case, these stories triggered pointed responses from the schools involved, sometimes resulting in tangible changes in the lives of the students featured, with potentially significant implications for other students in similar situations.
  • New Jersey’s Student Loan Program is ‘State-Sanctioned Loan-Sharking’

    New Jersey’s student loan agency, the Higher Education Student Assistance Authority, has some of the most aggressive collection tactics in the industry with few reprieves, even for borrowers who’ve died. ProPublica’s series lays out how HESAA’s loans have unraveled lives – sending many families into financial ruin – to the point they’ve been described as “state-sanctioned loan-sharking.”
  • UA president attempts takeover of for-profit chain ITT Tech

    After nearly a year of reporting on University of Akron President Scott Scarborough, The Devil Strip learned he was negotiating with a for-profit education company for what they suspected was a curriculum deal. Instead, they discovered that company was brokering a deal for the university to take over ITT Tech. The small paper broke this story, which was echoed by several outlets who were shut out of the university. They, meanwhile, had Scarborough on the phone admitting to the negotiations. While the school locked down the information, Sen. Dick Durbin referenced their reporting in an address to President Obama, promising to keep an eye on UA. Soon afterwards, the university abandoned the efforts, Scarborough was removed from office and ITT Tech closed all its campuses.
  • Who’s getting rich off your student debt?

    The student loan program was supposed to help open the door to higher education, but it’s become something else: a profit center for Wall Street and the government. Now the program is making things worse for some of the people it was designed to help. This episode of Reveal explores how this happened and who’s winning and losing as a result.
  • Pharaoh Brown Investigation

    Over a two-month-long investigation we uncovered three acts of violence committed by star University of Oregon football player Pharaoh Brown that went previously unreported: Brown had assaulted two teammates in the locker room — giving one a concussion from a punch to the back of the head — and been investigated by local police for attempting to strangle his girlfriend. We found no record of disciplinary action taken against Brown by the team, university or police.