A $25 million lawsuit against Daymar Institutes in Middle Tennessee claims students were scammed out of an education — and thousands of dollars.
Eight students who attended Daymar Institutes in Clarksville and Murfreesboro filed the lawsuit Monday in Davidson County Circuit Court.
Daymar Institute, formerly known as Draughons Junior College, is a for-profit, private institution that offers career-based educational programs.
The lawsuit, which is seeking class action, claims Daymar made deceitful promises about career placement and transfer credits, employed “highly unqualified faculty” and caused the defendants to take on “significant educational debt.”
“Job opportunities are not there, as promised. There have been various misrepresentations,” said Knoxville attorney Doug Nichol, who is representing the plaintiffs. “It’s just a diploma mill.”
Calls to the Daymar College Group headquarters in Owensboro weren’t returned on Tuesday.
This isn’t the first time Owensboro, Ky.-based Daymar Colleges Group has been the target of a hefty lawsuit. In July 2011, Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway sued Daymar College for similar violations of state consumer protection law, according to the Lexington Herald-Leader.
Daymar is also facing multiple lawsuits with hundreds of complainants in U.S. District Court in Western Kentucky.
Several of the Daymar Colleges, including the Daymar Institutes in Clarksville, Murfreesboro and Nashville received reaccreditation from the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools in December. The ACICS is approved by the U.S. Department of Education.
According to its website, the completion of a 96-hour billing and coding specialist associate’s degree at Nashville’s Daymar Institute costs $37,913 and the in-field placement rate is 8.3 percent.
A similar associate’s degree at Nashville State in business management is only 60 hours, costs roughly $7,740 and is transferrable to all Tennessee Board of Regents and University of Tennessee schools.
Overall, the student enrollment at Daymar’s four Middle Tennessee campuses (there are two in Nashville) was 3,480 according to the latest numbers. In 2010, 441 students were “placeable” and 265 found jobs, a 60 percent placement rate.