The Education Bureau (EDB) is investigating Lifelong College, founded by Alex Lee Ye-lick, a member of the Lingnan University council, in response to allegations the college is a diploma mill, Ming Pao Daily reported Friday.
The EDB said it has asked the college to make available its student register and record of transfers and exemptions of credits, as well as student attendance data.
The bureau said that if any violations of regulations are observed, the case could be handed over to law enforcement agencies.
Lifelong College was established in 1998 in Yau Ma Tei and has been offering students bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees from partner universities abroad, such as Tarlac State University (TSU), Bulacan State University (BSU) and Nueva Ecija University of Science and Technology, all of which are located in the Philippines.
Some of the overseas students reportedly complete their degrees in substantially less time than normal.
Lingnan University declined to comment on a council member’s personal dealings, saying the university and Lifelong College are separate entities.
Herdip Singh, associate vice president and comptroller at Lingnan University, has been accused of plagiarism in his dissertation for his doctoral degree in business administration from TSU in 2013.
Anna Tang King-yung, who is campaigning for a seat as a Wanchai district councilor in the Oi Kwan constituency, also obtained her doctoral degree, in education management, from TSU.
Tang told Apple Daily she enrolled in a course at another institution through the Hong Kong Management Association (HKMA) in 2011 but was persuaded by staff at the HKMA to switch to TSU.
Media reports had said she enrolled at TSU in 2012 and graduated in 2013, one year earlier than usual.
But Tang insisted she started her studies in 2011 and was too busy to submit the paperwork for enrollment in TSU.
She told Ming Pao she had no knowledge of any relationship between the HKMA and Lifelong College.
The newspaper said at least 10 tutors from Shue Yan University’s school of commerce obtained their doctoral degrees from BSU.
TVB actress Sisley Choi, who came second in the 2013 Miss Hong Kong pageant, graduated from a bachelor’s degree course in the space of two months from BSU via Lifelong College in 2013, Apple Daily reported.
Lifelong College declined to comment, saying its directors were in a meeting.
Education sector legislator Ip Kin-yuen said the EDB is obliged to dig deep into the Lifelong College matter, as forgery, using forged documents and conspiracy to defraud could be involved.
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