Voices of Elk Grove - Resident ties CNU's Alvin Cheung to school investigated by Homeland Security

During the Wednesday, June 12 Elk Grove City Council meeting, an Elk Grove resident highlighted questionable ties of the president and chief executive officer of the for-profit California Northstate University.

The comments were entered into the record by Deborah Sibner during the public comment section of the meeting. Sibner documented Alvin Cheung, the person leading CNU's charge for their proposed $750 million 400-bed hospital in Elk Grove's Stonelake neighborhood, with a school that was investigated by U.S. Homeland Security.

After questioning the appropriateness of the demolishing a shopping center to accommodate the proposed hospital in the west Elk Grove neighborhood, Sibner connected Cheung to the Bay Area for-profit school. Sibner said that school, San Jose-based International Technolgy University, was under investigation by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and that Cheung serves as the institution's chair of the school's board of trustees.

"Will CNU also become a convenient method to obtain a visa," Sibner asked. "Will Homeland Security be required to investigate CNU at some point."

Sibner also noted for-profit schools have a history of overpromising and underdelivering to their student and wondered if such a fate awaits CNU. Additionally, Sibner asked the council what qualifications does Cheung have to build and run a trauma II hospital.

"The possibility CNU collapses and abandons their campus is truly a concern," Sibner stated. "Especially after our experience with the ghost mall [the now demolished Outlet Collection at Elk Grove]."

The council did not respond the Sibner's comments. A video of the commentary is posted below.

The information Sibner cited came from ITUs website that shows Cheung is the current chair of the board of trustees. A KPIX 5 2016 story detailed the Homeland Security investigation into ITUs practice (see video below). 

Additionally, a 2011 story from The Chronicle of Higher Education details how colleges exploit a loophole to profit from international students. Among several institutions cited include ITU.

The story noted that ITU, founded in 1994 with the goal of becoming the largest university in the world. Instead enrolled sunk to just 18 students in 2006 when it developed a new business plan - "promising foreign students that they could work full-time jobs off-campus as soon as they arrived. They also offered existing students a $500 tuition rebate for each new student they referred. Business took off."

ITU's provost at the time, "earned $445,832 in 2009, more than was earned by the provosts of Yale, Brown, or Berkeley" the story noted.  

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D.J. Blutarsky said...

EGN needs to back off. I know Dr. Cheung and CNU are legit because Mayor Emeritus Gary Davis is their spokesman and says they are good for our city! I mean, step back and ask yourself, why would Gary lie to us? All these innuendos about phony student visas, Chinese birthing facility, and immigration mill are hogwash. Our city leaders are too smart to let this happen to us!

Renegade said...

I truly hope that the city leaders do extensive due diligence on Cheung, ITU and Cheung's ties to that entity, as well as adequate independent research on the topic of "Chinese birthing hospitals" that seem to be taking off in the US.

The mayor's recent trip to China cannot be looked at in a vacuum, it must be seen as part of the total picture of this entire project. The two are connected and the Chinese will be major funder for this project.

Funding for the hospital must be determined, confirmed, and guaranteed before being submitted to the public with complete and total transparency and complete disclosure of all material facts. I can see this project ending with the same result of the ghost mall and that's just not acceptable.

It should be public knowledge to all citizens that this hospital is to be a FOR PROFIT hospital, unlikely to accept most if not all health plans offered to our local work force, including local, state and federal workers. This means our health care will NOT cover treatment at this facility. The patient will pay for it out of their pocket.

Additionally, "trauma" certification is a very long and difficult process that will likely take years if it comes to fruition at all. If this topic piques your interest at all you should Google "Chinese birthing hospitals."

Then you'll be "in the know" about what's going on in Elk Grove.

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