Tri-Valley University appeared legitimate. The Bay Area school had a website, a roster of professors and a single building with classrooms in Pleasanton. When Vishal Dasa, a native of India, enrolled in 2009, he had hopes of completing a master’s degree in healthcare management.
Instead, he said he ended up painting walls, cleaning utensils and building heavy office equipment, hours of unpaid labor that he said were assigned to him by the university president, Susan Su, under the threat of deportation.
"I was afraid and used to obey her all the time because I didn't want to lose my [immigration] status," he said on Wednesday at the state Capitol. "I couldn't sleep."