“It has come to our attention that a large group of highly discounted college passes have been sold to those not enrolled in college,” said John Cohn, Telski’s director of security, in written comments provided to The Watch by company spokesperson Maryhelyn Kirwan.
“Those purchasing college passes enter into agreement with the ski resort ensuring class enrollment,” he said.
“We know that there’s a certain amount of fraud every year,” said Elizabeth Howe, Telski’s executive director of resort services, who explained that the company performed an audit to verify the validity of college transcripts it had received as proof of qualification for the $299 pass and found that some were not valid.
Telski recently subscribed to a national student enrollment database called the National Student Clearing House for purposes of conducting the audit, according to Cohn’s comments.
“This database has been helping us identify many who are committing fraud through this college pass scheme,” he said.
Howe said she did not have details as to whether the “students” had provided Telski with fake transcripts when applying for their passes, or whether they had since withdrawn from some or all of their classes and so no longer met the minimum 12 credit hours of study required to obtain the discount pass.
Those who were caught had the option of paying for a full-price season pass at a cost of $1,850, or were referred to the Mountain Village Police Department for prosecution for theft of services.
Those who opted to buy a regular season pass were credited the amount they paid for their student pass, and so owed Telski a balance of $1,551, said Howe.