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  1. Junior Member
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    Default Did I just get Scammed?

    So I've been looking for a way to break into the IT field and was interested when a co worker at work told me about a class he was taking to help get certify as an Oracle DBA (OCA). When I first met the instructor I didn't ask much question because I trusted the co worker's words. I also didn't do my due diligence when I forked over $2000 for this class but the instructor told me not to worry because he is legit (mistake on my part). Soon after that I realize this wasn't really a class its just one random guy who works as an oracle dba by bullshitting his way into the IT world. He teaches once a week as a side hustle, all for the love of money. The first few weeks when class started I just didn't really have a good feeling about the class, he gave us access to his forum which laid out what pdf book to read and in what order and whenever someone had a question he'll just tell them to refer to the ebook and that everything is in the ebook. He was also not very patient with the students and would just tell them that their not doing their homework if they had questions. As the weeks progress I started to realize that everything was just set up for him to make as much money as possible by setting a new class every 4 months to get people in and out as quickly as he can. He's definitely is not passionate about teaching I can tell you that much.

    After a month in he started giving tips about interviews, telling us that it's nothing but a numbers game. He encouraged the students to lie on their resume, lie about having a degree, and even if you don't have exp in a certain area just put it down anyways. It was all about doing your research on who the interviewer was and using social engineering to build a quick relationship with the interviewer. He said nothing about providing value. It was all about lying and using deceit to get the job. Pretty much a fake it till you make it approach.

    The practice exam he provided were also brain dumps in where he guaranteed that all the students will pass their OCA exam and that the only thing they need to worry about is doing their resume and practice answering interview questions. Now most of these students are very very new to the IT world, I mean they can't even type 30 wpm my guess is that they don't even own desktops. How he gets them in and hooked is by telling them that they can make $100k/year and that they don't need to know anything else besides oracle sql to land into a DBA role. The only prerequisite needed was $2000 and your own laptop, you didn't even have to know what a hard drive was.

    I felt like there was no quality or value in the class and he just slapped a bunch of old rehash crap on a site, provided some brain dumps, some free ebooks, cbt nugget videos, along with virtualbox with a schema from the companion site of the ebook and called it a class. I asked for half refund but was offered $600 to take it or leave it.

    It just angers me when the instructor flat out tells them that it's all JUST a GAME and that everyone is guaranteed to pass the OCA and the only hurdle they need to work on is answering the interview questions with tips such as " just keep talking and go on and go on answering one question and just stall as much as you can because it reduces the numbers of questions thrown at you "

    All these unsuspecting victims have no idea what a brain dump is and can barely speak English (about 99% of them are immigrants of Africa). So if you start to see more Africans in the DBA role and wonder how the heck this person is even a DBA now you know. The instructor even brags about how all Africans have family members who are DBAs or at least know someone who is a DBA.

    I'm not African but I am one of the few minorities they let in but being born and raised in the USA this **** just doesn't sit well with me at all. I would really hate to see a bunch of unqualified folks ruining this industry for everyone else. I don't even care about the refund anymore and will just consider it as a costly mistake but I would like for this instructor to stop teaching and spreading his nonsense. Is there anything I can do? This class is held in my city in a conference room every Wednesday.
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  3. Member
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    #2
    Yup, it sounds like you got scammed. You have to do your due diligence and research before you fork over the money. You could try to take him to small claims court, but I don't know how much luck you will have with that. It may be worth the effort to get more of your money back.
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  4. Senior Member
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    #3
    If you are that adamant about seeing him pay, report him to the governing agency for the OCA.

    https://www.oracle.com/corporate/contact/index.html

    There has to be one out there somewhere. If we IT professionals don't police our own industry, then who will??
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  5. Senior Member scaredoftests's Avatar
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    #4
    Always make sure the course(s) you are in is accredited. Yes, report it!!
    Never let your fear decide your fate....
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  6. Senior Member
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    #5
    I dunno - seemed like he had your best interests at heart.

    In all seriousness who was it? The best way to stop these things is by outing them. Maybe this dude is trying to become someone on this forum's next DBA?
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  7. Senior Member cyberguypr's Avatar
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    #6
    I literally know nothing about Oracle but since the guy is not an authorized trainer I have a feeling they are limited on what they can do, if anything. If you pay me $2k to hear my personal opinion on how to do something and I deliver that opinion, you can't say I scammed you. All you can say is that I gave you some very bad advice. As you admitted, you are guilty of not doing your due diligence.

    I would report to Oracle not expecting much and then file this under "lessons learned" and move on.
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  8. Senior Member
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    #7
    I usually don't read posts that are 814 words. Like never, but you caught my attention and also gave me a much needed laugh (Sorry). My day was going south.

    Off topic:

    Is it his fault or yours? I am not sure who to blame. Nonetheless, I think that you need to take some of the blame in my opinion. I think most people who have been in IT over a year ( I am being generous with the other 364 days) would have never fell victim to such a fraud campaign.
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  9. Senior Member
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    #8
    Quote Originally Posted by cyberguypr View Post

    I would report to Oracle not expecting much and then file this under "lessons learned" and move on.
    Maybe they'll revoke his Oracle certs, but it sounds like since he's OK with lying about everything else he'll just say he still has them anyway.
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  10. Senior Member shochan's Avatar
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    #9
    Find your local TV station that does investigative reporting & tell them about it. We have one here & they go after the scammers...Even report it to your state attorney general too. Not sure if you can get your money back, but at least it might prevent it from happening to someone else.
    2017 -> Chillaxing & (reading C|EH - Matt Walker)
    2018 -> CCNA CyberOps (July Cohort)
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  11. Senior Member
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    #10
    I don't think "scam" is the right word. He provided the training promised, it was just poor quality.
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    #11
    Maybe not a scam per se but more of poor quality as EnderWiggin said. I think the "fake it til you make it" approach is one to consider sometimes but still that instructor is not a good one. Definitely do your research on those types of classes and make sure the class is accredited. Never take your co-workers word for it. You'd be better off at a junior college taking IT classes, online classes, or self-learning. If you truly felt cheated than report him to someone and try to get your money-back.
    Last edited by Basic85; 11-09-2017 at 08:26 PM.
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  13. Senior Member cyberguypr's Avatar
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    #12
    *per se. Sorry, but it kills my soul every time I see it any other way.
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  14. Junior Member
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    #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Basic85 View Post
    Maybe not a scam per say but more of poor quality as EnderWiggin said. I think the "fake it til you make it" approach is one to consider sometimes but still that instructor is not a good one. Definitely do your research on those types of classes and make sure the class is accredited. Never take your co-workers word for it.
    Fully agree with what Basic85 mentioned. I were you I would learn a lesson from this episode and move on. Throw away the hate and regret - get what you started the journey for. The sooner the better
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  15. They are watching you NetworkNewb's Avatar
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    #14
    Quote Originally Posted by cyberguypr View Post
    I literally know nothing about Oracle but since the guy is not an authorized trainer I have a feeling they are limited on what they can do, if anything. If you pay me $2k to hear my personal opinion on how to do something and I deliver that opinion, you can't say I scammed you. All you can say is that I gave you some very bad advice. As you admitted, you are guilty of not doing your due diligence.

    I would report to Oracle not expecting much and then file this under "lessons learned" and move on.
    This ^^^ You paid for a course. You received a course. It was a bad course... You move on.

    A better question is are you still working with that co-worker that recommended him to you? I'd be more pissed at that guy!!
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  16. Completely Clueless TechGromit's Avatar
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    #15
    Quote Originally Posted by NetworkNewb View Post
    A better question is are you still working with that co-worker that recommended him to you? I'd be more pissed at that guy!!
    He just might not know any better. It's like growing up around criminals, if everyone around you is a criminal, how do you know what your doing is wrong? For some it less about learning and more about getting a piece of paper that is going to get you a good job. Unfortunately they do not realize that for the most part the days of just having a paper certification doesn't automatically get you a job anymore. It often will get you an interview, but if you haven't a clue what your talking about, a technical interview will quickly reveal you for the fraud you are.
    Still searching for the corner in a round room.
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  17. Junior Member
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    #16
    If the guy is telling you to lie about having a degree on your resume, he is in no way, shape or form a legitimate trainer in any sense of the imagination.

    In this day and age, you have to pay for everything using a well-known credit card. If you had, you would be able to dispute this and win...and get your money back. If a "certification expert" doesn't take plastic, he's not legit - just a fly-by-night operation.
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  18. Senior Member
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    #17
    Copyright infringement. Unless he has permission to use CBTNuggets’ videos he is violating copyright laws. You could contact CBTNuggets and let them know what he’s doing. They may or may not do anything. You might want to post something on ripoffreport as well.
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  19. Senior Member
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    #18
    When you know how much Oracle charge for their classes, you would have known that you were being scammed.
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  20. Member NuclearBeavis's Avatar
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    #19
    In the legal sense, probably not. In the ethical sense, yeah. This "course" sounds especially terrible. But in the big scope of things, it seems to me like most IT training courses are extremely bad values. A lot of them charge $3000-$4000 for 5 days. That much money will pay for an entire semester of multiple classes at most public universities.

    You're better off picking out affordable study materials and then self-studying.
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  21. Junior Member
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    #20
    Quote Originally Posted by NuclearBeavis View Post
    ...most IT training courses are extremely bad values. A lot of them charge $3000-$4000 for 5 days. That much money will pay for an entire semester of multiple classes at most public universities.
    Hell, at a university like WGU, that'll not only get you a semester of classes under your belt, but also potentially 3-5 tech certs.
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  22. Member NuclearBeavis's Avatar
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    #21
    Quote Originally Posted by LarryTR View Post
    Hell, at a university like WGU, that'll not only get you a semester of classes under your belt, but also potentially 3-5 tech certs.
    WGU seems like one of the best values out there.
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  23. Junior Member
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    #22
    To be frank, I never trust anyone's judgement when it comes to me having to spend money..no one. Certainly not a co-worker, but not even a family member. That's just who I am. I research the heck of medium to large ticket items before my cash/debit card leaves my wallet. I find that the vast majority of people have very poor judgement when it comes to just about anything - they think with their emotions/feelings instead of with their brains. That kinda "thinking" will put you in the poorhouse...or get you scammed.
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  24. Junior Member
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    #23
    Quote Originally Posted by NuclearBeavis View Post
    WGU seems like one of the best values out there.

    For sure...that is, if you're a self-starter and a go-getter.
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  25. Completely Clueless TechGromit's Avatar
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    #24
    Quote Originally Posted by NuclearBeavis View Post
    But in the big scope of things, it seems to me like most IT training courses are extremely bad values. A lot of them charge $3000-$4000 for 5 days. That much money will pay for an entire semester of multiple classes at most public universities.
    I would disagree, IT training or any training for that matter is specialized training, that can be applied to real world problems, College / University is generalized training, it's rare you can directly apply what you learned in college to work. Yes, an English course can help you fill out you TSP report using proper grammar, but for the most part college courses do little to train you for your specific job. You don't learn how to configure Cisco Switches or preform penetration testing in any college course.

    Quote Originally Posted by NuclearBeavis View Post
    You're better off picking out affordable study materials and then self-studying.
    This is always the most economical way to learn, and the most difficult, takes a lot of motivation to read and study text books.
    Still searching for the corner in a round room.
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  26. Senior Member
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    #25
    Well, the guy did deliver on his training. Which had the goal of getting you a cert and a job. I think the real issue here is more about the ethics of what he's pushing.

    The answer to your question about being scammed is whether you learned anything or not. You don't have to follow the guys methods, but if you feel better prepared to go out and get the cert legitimately then the experience might have some value to it.

    Guys like this are all over the place in the IT world, having some personal experience with him should give you some confidence to walk into an interview knowing there's a good chance they just interviewed somebody who's total garbage and now you're going to look awesome in comparison.
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