Newport Beach college consultant rebrands to avoid confusion with the one at center of admissions scandal

Eva Scalzo’s college advising program had to revamp its website because its name was similar to a nonprofit run by William “Rick” Singer, who has pleaded guilty to orchestrating large-scale college admissions fraud.
(From Eva Scalzo Advising website)

When news of the nationwide college admissions fraud scandal broke this week, one local college advising company was caught in the tumult.

The attention focused on William “Rick” Singer of Newport Beach and his nonprofit, the Key Worldwide Foundation, inadvertently affected a Newport-based college admissions advising firm, now formerly known as the Key Academics.

The organizations are unrelated.

“I have absolutely NO affiliation with Mr. William ‘Rick’ Singer, nor his Key Worldwide Foundation, which sadly bears a name similar to my college advising company,” Eva Scalzo wrote on her website, which now carries the name Eva Scalzo Advising. The old website, bearing the former name of her company, was taken down around the time the news broke about Singer.

“As a result, I have been forced to rename and rebrand my company in an effort to further distance my esteemed reputation from this horribly unethical, unfair scheme that will surely have a lasting impact on our industry,” her statement said.

Scalzo, a Yale alumna, offers guidance to prepare high school students for college admissions. Her website boasts of acceptances to several of the schools listed in Singer’s indictment: Stanford, Chapman University and all University of California campuses.

“For the past 10 years, I have made it my life’s mission to help high school students reach their true potential and find their true fit in a college or university,” she said in the statement. “I will continue to serve my students and their parents as a college advising professional with the highest levels of ethical advice and accurate guidance.”

Scalzo declined further comment.