Conning Harvard: The True Story of the Con Artist Who Faked His Way into the Ivy League

Overview

Adam Wheeler’s plan was as audacious as it was illegal: He gained admission to Harvard

through fraud. While countless students dreaming of an Ivy League education compete honestly,

Wheeler resorted to faking SAT scores, transcripts, and letters of recommendation. And

after he enrolled at Harvard, Wheeler plagiarized his classwork and bilked the university out of

thousands of ...

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Conning Harvard: The True Story of the Con Artist Who Faked His Way into the Ivy League

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Overview

Adam Wheeler’s plan was as audacious as it was illegal: He gained admission to Harvard

through fraud. While countless students dreaming of an Ivy League education compete honestly,

Wheeler resorted to faking SAT scores, transcripts, and letters of recommendation. And

after he enrolled at Harvard, Wheeler plagiarized his classwork and bilked the university out of

thousands of dollars in prizes and grants. But then he shot too far. He applied for nomination to the illustrious Rhodes and Fulbright scholarships, and that gamble finally exposed his academic fraud. Alerted that he was under suspicion, Wheeler fled Harvard but did not stop trying to scam universities. He filed more phony applications to top-tier schools until vigilant college administrators and eventually the police forced him off his computer and into court, thereby bringing to light his astonishing tangle of lies.

As a reporter for The Harvard Crimson, Julie Zauzmer covered the case from the moment

the news of Wheeler’s indictment broke. She interviewed dozens of friends and teachers who

knew Wheeler throughout his suspect academic career and dug through records to expose even

more instances of deception. This fascinating account reveals how one plagiarist took on the Ivy

League—and almost won.

 

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Conning Harvard proves that what I did over 40 years ago is 4,000 times easier to do today due to technology.  Technology breeds crime and makes replicating documents and falsifying paper child's play.  This, added with the fact that we live in an extremely unethical society that doesn't teach ethics at home and doesn't teach ethics at school because the teacher would be accused of teaching morality, has brought us today to a country full of Adam Wheelers.  For those that are naive, a must read." 

                                                   --Frank W. Abagnale, author of Catch Me If You Can

". . . the bizarre nature of the case is hook enough." --Publishers Weekly
 

Zauzmer's well-researched book is practically a how-to guide for scamming a college admissions process…To report on the extent of Wheeler's fraud, Zauzmer scrutinizes the college admissions system even more carefully than her subject did... --Philadelphia Inquirer

The startling revelations about Wheeler’s exploits accumulate so quickly in Julie Zauzmer’s ripping 'Conning Harvard' that at times this meticulously reported nonfiction narrative reads like a potboiler."   

                                                                                         -The Washington Post

 "A handbook for teens on how not to get into Harvard--and, perhaps, a reminder that Harvard isn't infallible."                                                                                       --Booklist

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780762786763
  • Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
  • Publication date: 9/3/2013
  • Pages: 240
  • Sales rank: 964,173
  • Product dimensions: 5.22 (w) x 8.24 (h) x 0.66 (d)

Meet the Author

Julie Zauzmer is a Harvard University senior who began covering the Adam Wheeler story for The Harvard Crimson in 2010. She is currently the managing editor of The Harvard Crimson and will graduate from Harvard in May 2013.

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