U of Phoenix in GAO muck

Looks like the University of Phoenix — the national for-profit university that has branches in Woodbury and St. Louis Park — may have been snagged in that GAO inquiry into deception at for-profit institutions.

The document and video didn’t appear to name names. But now the university’s owner, Phoenix-based Apollo Group Inc., has launched an investigation into its enrollment practices after the GAO probe found that the company’s employees misled applicants, Bloomberg reports. That includes reviewing how student recruiters and advisers are paid.

More from Bloomberg:

The GAO investigation released this week found that recruiters at the University of Phoenix and other for-profit colleges lied to undercover applicants about the cost and duration of programs.

Apollo, the biggest U.S. education company, said it has begun changing the way it compensates recruiters and is monitoring telephone calls to detect abuses, the company said in a statement.

“Any time we discover a violation of our policies, we take action, including termination, depending on the outcome of our investigation,” said Alex Clark, a spokesman for Apollo, in a telephone interview.

A little update from MPR’s Tim Post:

Capella University’s share price fell 6.65 percent on Nasdaq trading.  Stock for other for-profit colleges fell as well.

Capella officials wouldn’t comment on the inquiry, saying they’re still reviewing the request.