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NCAA Punishes Kalamazoo for Financial Aid Violations

March 23, 2016

The National Collegiate Athletic Association's Division III Committee on Infractions placed Kalamazoo College on three years' probation Tuesday for violating rules that prohibit Division III colleges from awarding financial aid based on athletic ability. Division III colleges are allowed to weigh athletic considerations in deciding whom to admit, but the rules adopted by the division's members bar them from taking such factors into account when packaging financial aid.

In a joint process through the NCAA's summary disposition process, the Division III infractions panel found that Kalamazoo had for at least five years used ratings that considered athletics participation in determining aid for prospective students, which meant that 567 students received aid packages based on their athletic skill or participation. In addition, the head baseball coach told dozens of players in email messages that "the college’s admissions office would increase merit-based financial aid upon his written recommendation," which the NCAA panel determined could be interpreted as a written offer of aid.

The NCAA panel imposed a ban on postseason play for any team that still has players who received aid based on sports participation.

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Doug Lederman

Doug Lederman is editor and co-founder of Inside Higher Ed. He helps lead the news organization's editorial operations, overseeing news content, opinion pieces, career advice, blogs and other features. Doug speaks widely about higher education, including on C-Span and National Public Radio and at meetings and on campuses around the country, and his work has appeared in The New York Times and USA Today, among other publications. Doug was managing editor of The Chronicle of Higher Education from 1999 to 2003. Before that, Doug had worked at The Chronicle since 1986 in a variety of roles, first as an athletics reporter and editor. He has won three National Awards for Education Reporting from the Education Writers Association, including one in 2009 for a series of Inside Higher Ed articles he co-wrote on college rankings. He began his career as a news clerk at The New York Times. He grew up in Shaker Heights, Ohio, and graduated in 1984 from Princeton University. Doug lives with his wife, Kate Scharff, in Bethesda, Md.

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