Vista College students took to social media Friday, saying the college is closing at least two campuses: in El Paso and Las Cruces.
Students have indicated that they have either been notified on campus or have received emails informing them of the closings. The college phone number did not appear to be working on Friday, and no comments were received from college officials in time for publication.
The college has locations in Las Cruces as well as locations in Texas in Beaumont, Killeen, Longview, College Station, and Fort Smith, as well as an online campus. The main campus of the college is in El Paso.
Alyssa Perez said she was walking down a hallway on Las Cruces campus at around 1:40 p.m. Friday when a college employee told her to get her things and clear the premises.
“They are closed, they are finished, everyone has been cleared from the building,” said Perez. “We were literally kicked out of our clinical sites.”
Although this happened at the Las Cruces site, Perez said all campuses will be closed.
Mariah Rivera said in an email that she usually teaches online and in person on the Vista College campus in El Paso. She confirmed that she had received an email advising her that the college would close at 3 p.m. on Friday, according to a copy of the email made available to the Times.
“I’ve read tweets and there are a lot of angry students. It was very abrupt and it seems like even the staff didn’t know. etc. No response from anyone, “said Rivera.
Rivera said she still had about three months of schooling before she expected to graduate as an associate, but now she’s not sure if her college credits will carry over.
The email said the college made “the difficult decision to shut down all operations with effect from the end of the business day on Friday.”
“While we are in compliance with both accreditation and state / federal regulations, we cannot continue for financial reasons,” the email said.
The college has been working to identify colleges and schools that its students can move to to graduate and has provided loan relief information, according to the email.
Ashley Brown, who was contacted on Facebook Messenger, said she was preparing to visit Vista College’s El Paso campus for the fall semester in the dental assistant program when she was notified that the college was closing.
She said she had already contacted the Pima Medical Institute in El Paso and hoped to continue her studies.
A Twitter user posted on Friday that a Vista College campus had closed and no one answered the phone.
The user claimed Vista College took tuition, loans, scholarships, and even GI Bill benefits for courses the user had never attended.
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Cristina Carreon can be reached on Twitter at [email protected] and @ Cris_carreon90.