Two former high-ranking executives of Trump University are now two of the top executives at a Florida-based career college, Ultimate Medical Academy, that has 13,000 students enrolled, has been receiving more than $150 million annually in federal student aid, and is accredited by the imperiled agency ACICS. The school, previously a for-profit institution tied to a New York-based investment company, last year was acquired by a Denver-based tax-exempt non-profit organization that had little activity prior to the merger.
Ultimate and Trump
Presumptive GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump has faced scrutiny for his unlicensed real estate “university,” which has been sued by former students, as well as New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, who allege that Trump University was a scam that failed to deliver on its promises and left students with little to show for tuition payments as high as $34,995.
Documents produced in the lawsuits against Trump University reveal that David Highbloom, who is now the co-chief executive officer of Ultimate Medical Academy (UMA), was the chief operating officer of Trump University. The 2013 complaint filed by former students in federal court in San Diego asserts that, despite Trump University’s claims that instructors were hand-picked by Trump, “it was [Trump University president Michael] Sexton and COO David Highbloom who interviewed the instructors and was in charge of hiring instructors.”
Some former Trump University students and employees claim that some of the venture’s instructors had little actual real estate experience; some, instead, excelled at high-pressure recruiting of students, and coercive recruiting tactics are described in detail in depositions and documents produced in the litigation.
Highbloom also has been deposed in the students’ lawsuit.