A new investigation underway at the Department of Education seeks to determine how much money Ivy League schools are receiving from foreign sources such as China, Russia, and Saudi Arabia.
By law, universities are required to report any gifts or contracts with foreign sources worth $250,000 or more.
In 2019, a Senate investigation found that up to 70% of universities failed to report foreign contracts to the tune of $6.5 billion. Yale alone failed to report $375 million in foreign funding between 2014 and 2017.
Last month, a Harvard chemistry professor was arrested after he lied about receiving millions of dollars in funding from China. The US had already given him $15 million for his research.
Trump Administration officials worry that China and other governments are using money and collaborative research projects to infiltrate American academia, with the objective of spreading propaganda and obtaining knowledge that could give them a scientific or military advantage over the US.
As officials have pointed out, the large amounts of foreign money flowing into Harvard and Yale have had no effect on tuition costs.
“This is about transparency. If colleges and universities are accepting foreign money and gifts, their students, donors, and taxpayers deserve to know how much and from whom,” argues Education Sec. Betsy DeVos. “Unfortunately, the more we dig, the more we find that too many are underreporting or not reporting at all…We will continue to hold colleges and universities accountable and work with them to ensure their reporting is full, accurate, and transparent as required by the law.”
Since July, the Department’s efforts have prompted the reporting of more than $6 billion in previously undisclosed foreign funds from Qatar, China, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, and others.
Editor’s note: China has long targeted our Universities in order to steal cutting edge research. The Chinese have hundreds of thousands of students here. They have also purchased colleges near leading Universities as cover for their intelligence officers. This is a serious attack.