It seems Harvard University has become embroiled in its own college admissions scandal. Earlier this week, Harvard learned of a questionable real estate transaction involving its fencing coach. Various media claim the coach, Peter Brand, sold his home for nearly double its assessed value to Jie Zhao. Subsequently, Mr. Zhao’s son gained admissions to Harvard as a member of the fencing team.
Mr. Zhao never lived in the house. He sold it for a steep loss 17 months later. Perhaps Mr. Zhao’s son would have gained admission to Harvard without this transaction. However, it certainly seems questionable.
Harvard has retained outside counsel to investigate this transaction. Expect updates on this from the mainstream media as the story develops. As we blogged before, we expect internal auditors to investigate the admission of student athletes whose athletic careers were far below median expectations.