Former Baruch College Official Pleads Guilty in Grade-Fixing Case

Baruch College, part of the City University of New York, fired Chris Koutsoutis, director of executive programs at its business school, after an internal inquiry accused him of forging professors’ signatures to raise the grades of students who didn’t meet graduation requirements. He pleaded guilty on Wednesday to 21 felony charges of forgery and 10 misdemeanor charges of falsifying business records. In court he admitted changing one grade from an F to an A-minus, saying on a grade-change form that the student had “completed missing work.” Mr. Koutsoutis agreed to serve six months in jail and five years on probation under the plea deal.

He received no money or favors for making the changes, according to court papers. When Justice Larry Stephen asked him to explain his motivation, Mr. Koutsoutis quietly said that he just wanted to give the students their best chances to succeed.

“I wish I had a better answer for you,” he said.

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