Farragut woman upset about online GRE training program

Farragut woman upset about online GRE training program

Posted:
Senatore hopes to get a PhD to teach history. Senatore hopes to get a PhD to teach history.
Senatore checked a box agreeing to the terms of the program. Senatore checked a box agreeing to the terms of the program.

By DON DARE
6 On Your Side Consumer Investigator

FARRAGUT (WATE) - Holly Senatore holds a master's degree in military history and hopes to teach college. To do that, she wants to earn a PhD.

In order to be accepted into a PhD program, students must first take the GRE or Graduate Record Exam. The test is similar to the SAT that high schoolers take ahead of college.

Senatore studied for the GRE several years ago when was working on her application for graduate school for her master's degree.

This time around, she decided to study online and discovered a program called Maple Leaf International Consulting or MLIC.

"I assumed the training would entail teaching. I've taken two years of online training before and that training involved teaching materials," said Senatore. "I was sent six assignments but no training modules as they say they're supposed to send."

But MLIC's website claims she would receive study materials.

"They say the $700 includes online training modules," Senatore said. "They say they sent them to me, but they didn't."

Two days after making the order, she sent the company an email.

"Later they said I was sent the training material, the training modules," she said. "I said I never received any of them."

Senatore paid MLIC with her credit card and tried to dispute the charge, but lost.

"They told my bank I had been sent instructions for the course. They said I was sent everything I was supposed to have been sent," said Senatore. "The only thing they sent to me was instructions on how to open an email."   

Senatore tried to cancel her contract within three days under the cooling-off rule. But the three-day cooling-off rule addresses only door-to-door sales people or sales people who work from temporary locations like hotels.

And if the customer is the one to first make contact with a salesperson either on the phone or online, the three-day rule does not apply.

Additionally, courses of instruction or training are exempt from the cooling-off rule.

Furthermore, Senatore signed away her right to a refund when she clicked the box agreeing to the registration terms.

In the agreement it states, "once the registration is confirmed there is no refund".

"Once a participant has been registered with a trainer and set up with training modules, no refund is allowed. That's to prevent abuse," MLIC told 6 On Your Side.

MLIC said Senatore did not complete the assignments sent to her and refused to participate in the program.

But Senatore said she didn't get what she paid for.

"As the consumer I didn't receive the goods that I had purchased," she said. "I feel like they just took my money."

MLIC said the company trains thousands of students each year and they all agree to the same terms that Senatore did.


If you have a consumer issue, call the 6 On Your Side Hotline at 865-633-5974 or email ddare@wate.com.

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