That Student in Your Community College Class? They Could Be a Bot.. On the first day of spring term this year, an aeronautics professor came to administrator Laura Hope to share something suspicious: Most of the students in his virtual class weren’t participating at all. These weren’t real students, but scammers likely out to bilk taxpayers of millions of dollars in financial ai d. Faculty and staff caught onto the scam before any dollars went out. If they hadn’t, about $1.7 million would have landed in the hands of fraudsters.