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Thursday, February 9th, 2012

Lies told to me by an Indian agent

Each day working in this industry, teaches me more about the length people will go to – to lie to line their own pocketbooks.

My boss (Mel Broitman, you can read his blog on this site), asked me to call up an education agency in Punjab, which is also listed with a Canadian phone number and web address. It comes up very high in Google searches for “study in Canada” – so we wanted to know more about what kind of agency it is.

I called the Consultants at their office in Panchkula, Haryana (near Chandigarh) and spoke on the cell number provided. I gave my background as a mother of a 17 year old daughter in class XII interested in studying either Psychology or Political Science.

I asked for undergraduate degree information in a Canadian public university. The man said said it is not possible to get direct admission to a university. He suggested to first go for a college for a certificate or diploma first and only after completion apply for undergraduate courses. He said direct university admission only possible for Masters courses.

(Mel has told me many times that these agents will say anything – and will lie in order to promote whatever product they are selling. Since few universities work with such agents, and almost all colleges do – the profile I gave of an excellent Grade 12 student is recommended for a college course so that agent can try for his commission there. Sickening.)

His charges are 10,000 rupees (about 200 CAD) before the application is filed and at any stage “my daughter” is not able to go either due to rejection of her application or visa, the money is non-refundable. “Ma’am,” he said. “We try our best and that’s why we will try for as many colleges as we can, so that if one college rejects, at least we have another in hand.”

The consultant claimed that a two-year diploma program will guarantee a three-year work
permit and a job at a minimum annual salary of $50k CAD.

As I say, each day in this business is a learning experience.

Author, Anjali Anand Seth

Anjali Anand Seth, Manager of the Canadian University Application Centre (CUAC) Gurgaon office, holds a M.Phil in International Organisations, from Jawaharlal Nehru University, and Bachelor and Masters degrees in Political Science from Delhi University.

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