I Attended the International Academy of Design & Technology IADT in Chicago Won’t Release My Transcript. – Sam

“Dear Steve,

I attended IADT in Chicago Fall 1999. I met with an academic adviser who I soon learned was a salesperson not an adviser, I expressed my concern over the high tuition costs and was told that I need to pay an enrollment fee and that the rest would be covered by financial aid and loans.

I did what I was instructed and trusted the wrong person. A few weeks into the quarter I was pulled out of class and told that I would be dropped for non-payment if I did not make a payment. I was frustrated, embarrassed and confused. How was this happening? What happened to the aid I was promised? I decided not to return for a second quarter.

I went on to another school, was wiser and more careful and had no real financial aid problems. I was impressed that my next school mandated things like entrance counseling and financial aid orientations which IADT did not. Is that illegal?

I have since transferred to another school which is where it was brought to my attention that IADT won’t release my transcripts because they say there is hold on my account. I contacted IADT who said that my debt was written off in 2001. They say my balance is $0 but that I owed $2300. They claim I attended school for two quarters. They say that I carried over $1200 in debt from the first quarter to the second. I also learned that although I qualified for Pell Grants I never received any. What are my options? Please help!


Dear Sam,

Sadly I’m not surprised. Selling people into school is not uncommon and many “counselors” are in fact salespeople with quotas and commissions.

Will the credits even transfer to the new school if you had the transcript? If not, it might just be better to let sleeping dogs lie on this and forget about it. I’m not sure this 11 year old fight is worth having with them.

See also  I Went to IADT and Want to Get Rid of My Federal and Private Student Loans

The transcript is often held as collateral until all fees are paid.

Please post your responses and follow-up messages to me on this in the comments section below.


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3 thoughts on “I Attended the International Academy of Design & Technology IADT in Chicago Won’t Release My Transcript. – Sam”

  1. My husband also went to IADT. His campus was in Orlando, FL back in 2002. They had a financial counselor whom he was required to see every quarter. He was to sign the fafsa in his office and they would process it. We were horrified to find out two years later that they took out federal and private loans to cover the entire degree. They never processed the pell grant which my husband qualified for. The Pell Grant would have covered about $12,000 which is half the degree and the other $12,000 were to be loans. We had discussed this with the financial counselor when he enrolled. instead we got a bill for $32,000 from Sallie Mae!!! It has ruined our lives! I believe that if they were to do a real investigation that they would find that the school and Sallie Mae were paying each other off.

  2. My school’s financial aid department require that I send them the transcripts. I don’t know how they know I went there but they do. Believe me, if I it weren’t for the fact that my school is requiring them I would not be digging this up! Also, if I contact the collection agency will it give them the legal right to put this debt on my credit report even though it was written off in 2001? 

    • The debt should only be reported for 7.5 years from the date it was first reported. The collection agency should not alter the date. If they do, dispute this with your credit reporting bureaus.

      Do you mean requiring or requesting?


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