DoD-funded School at Center of Federal Probes Over Suspected Chinese Military Ties

Yanping Chen Frame

By Debbie Gregory.

The University of Management and Technology (UMT), located in Arlington, Virginia, United States, is an accredited institution of higher education offering undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degree programs and professional development programs.

The school, based four miles from the Pentagon, has been at the center of multiple federal probes about its leadership’s alleged ties to the Chinese military and whether thousands of records from U.S. service members were compromised.

The U.S. taxpayer-funded school has a campus in Beijing and partnerships with universities around the world, and claims to have had 5,000 graduates in the last five years.

But the school’s leadership has drawn the attention of the FBI, the Justice Department, the Pentagon, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and the Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS) since at least 2012 — and perhaps as early as 2009.

In December 2012, the FBI made two very public raids of UMT and the northern Virginia home of university president Yanping Chen Frame and its academic dean, her husband J. Davidson Frame.

Yet since those FBI raids, UMT has continued to collect more than $6 million from Defense Department tuition assistance programs as well as the Department of Veterans Affairs through the post-9/11 GI bill.

“It’s a bad deal for the soldiers, and it’s a bad deal for the taxpayer,” said Stephen Rhoads, a military veteran turned whistleblower who says he worked with the FBI on the case.

Chen, who appears to have served in the People’s Liberation Army, came to the United States in 1987 from Beijing on a non-immigrant visa with her daughter Lele Wang. She may have been a full colonel.

The Chinese government funded Chen’s research at George Washington University where she received a Ph.D. in Public Policy in 1999, the year after UMT was created.

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