Ever heard of InterAmerican University? Li Xiaoping has - he's been awarded a PhD by this diploma mill. He's not the only HK-listed director with a degree from this place either.

Real Gold Mining appoints INED with dodgy PhD
19 November 2011

Still embroiled in investigations and in the suspension deep-freeze on SEHK, Real Gold Mining Ltd (RGM, 0246) has been scraping around to find itself another independent non-executive director to make up the quota of three. The result is Mr Li Xiaoping, appointed yesterday. The announcement tells us that:

"He was awarded the doctorate degree in business administration (PH.D) from InterAmerican University in 2010."

RGM doesn't say where InterAmerican University (IAU) is, but our best guess is this one, at the domain iauniversity.net, which is registered to one Angel Fernandez of the town of Luarca, Asturias, in northern Spain. There is also another domain, inuniversityedu.net, which hosts a very similar web site for IAU. That domain is registered to "guangjun zhong" of Beijing.

We'll just use the first site in this article as they are nearly identical. "Dr Angel Fernandez" is listed on the site as President of the University. On its accreditation page, IAU says that it is "globally accredited" by the "International Association of Universities and Schools" (IAUS) and the "International Council on Education" (ICE). On its contact page, IAU gives an address in New York.

The Michigan Government warns that IAUS is not approved by the US Department of Education and therefore any so-called "accreditation" by IAUS is meaningless. In other words, IAUS is an accreditation mill. The Oregon Office of Degree Authorization contains a similar warning and states that IAUS is based in Switzerland. We could not find a web site for IAUS, except for this page on Angelfire. We could not find a web site for ICE, or any government that recognises it. The US Council on Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) does not recognise IAUS or ICE.

In short, then, IAU has no accreditation recognised by the US Federal government, and we're calling it a diploma mill. So Real Gold's new INED has a somewhat unreal PhD. IAU also lists affiliates, one of which is "INTERAMERICAN UNIVERSITY ASIA". This has its own web site in Chinese. There's also an affiliate in Malaysia.

And there's one more

Mr Li (at least RGM has the decency not to call him Doctor) is not the only director of a HK-listed company who has a degree from IAU. We found one other. Ms Wang Xiang, a non-executive director of Shanghai Qingpu Fire-Fighting Equipment Co. Ltd (8115), holds an MBA from IAU, according to page 10 of the 2010 annual report.

Further afield, the Borneo Post reports on 17-Dec-2010 that Dato Lau Siu Wai has been awarded an honorary PhD in Project Management by IAU along with a top-10 something-or-other award, and there's a picture of him receiving the award from one Dr Angel Fernandez.

© Webb-site.com, 2011

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