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HomeEducationFor-profit Pittsburgh Profession Institute closes all of a sudden, citing ACICS shutdown

For-profit Pittsburgh Profession Institute closes all of a sudden, citing ACICS shutdown


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Dive Transient:

  • Pittsburgh Profession Institute, a for-profit establishment, deliberate to shut efficient Wednesday, primarily blaming the U.S. Division of Training’s determination to revoke recognition of its accreditor earlier this yr. 
  • The institute’s president mentioned it couldn’t survive amid restrictions the Training Division positioned on faculties accredited by the Accrediting Council for Impartial Schools and Faculties — ACICS — together with that they not enroll new college students. 
  • A number of the institute’s college students have been in a position to end their applications earlier than it shut down, whereas others can switch to different native establishments, it mentioned. The institute enrolled almost 300 college students as of fall 2021, in accordance with probably the most just lately out there federal information.

Dive Perception:

The Pittsburgh Profession Institute represents one other institutional casualty within the drama surrounding ACICS, a long-troubled accreditor that caters primarily to for-profits. 

In August, the Training Division pulled ACICS’ federal recognition, which means it may now not accredit faculties. Federally acknowledged accreditors are supposed to guarantee faculties meet monetary and tutorial benchmarks and in addition function the gatekeepers of their federal Title IV assist. 

When an establishment loses accreditation, it additionally loses entry to federal scholar assist {dollars}, with out which most faculties can not survive.

Accreditors themselves are topic to sure requirements, which the Training Division mentioned ACICS had not been in compliance with for years. After the division ended ACICS’ recognition earlier this yr, it gave establishments underneath the accreditor’s purview 18 months to discover a new one. 

Throughout that 18 months, ACICS-accredited faculties can not enroll new college students who wouldn’t be capable of full their applications in that point.

The division’s constraints spelled the top for the Pittsburgh Profession Institute, its president, Patti Yakshe, mentioned in an announcement. 

The institute “labored tirelessly in an effort to safe new alternatives that may enable the varsity to proceed operations” till the restrictions have been lifted — unsuccessfully, Yakshe mentioned. 

The president didn’t specify what these new alternatives have been.

Pittsburgh Profession Institute scheduled the final day of instruction for Wednesday, however Yakshe mentioned some officers will keep on campus till the top of the yr to assist college students finishing externship and scientific applications and help others with transfers and their transcripts. 

Information experiences recommend the sudden closure shocked college students when the institute introduced it earlier this month, giving them solely weeks to develop various plans. It provided six applications, in accordance with its web site, together with in surgical and veterinary know-how.

The institute deliberate to proceed to supply monetary assist and tutorial assist by the interval it was shutting down, Yakshe mentioned. It additionally deliberate to maintain its profession companies wing energetic for graduates for an unspecified time.

Yakshe didn’t point out help for workers within the message.

“We perceive that information of this determination shall be met with some degree of uncertainty, and we’re dedicated to maintaining you knowledgeable of our progress by ongoing communication,” Yakshe mentioned. 

The institute isn’t the one ACICS-accredited faculty to attribute its closure to the Training Division’s determination. 

Stratford College, a for-profit establishment with campuses in Virginia and Maryland, introduced late in September it will shut down on the finish of that month. On the time, Stratford’s president accused the Training Division of overstepping its authority with its limits on ACICS faculties. 

Coverage consultants, nevertheless, expressed skepticism the restrictions brought about Stratford’s demise, noting that ACICS had run into bother for years earlier than.

The Obama administration first tried to yank ACICS’ recognition in 2016, citing related noncompliance issues to these at problem this yr. However the accreditor efficiently sued the Training Division, which finally led to Betsy DeVos, the previous training secretary underneath President Donald Trump, reinstating it in 2018. 

Issues persevered with ACICS within the following years, although DeVos, who was broadly considered as extra sympathetic to for-profit establishments than her predecessor, didn’t revoke its recognition.

ACICS has been on a downslide for years. It as soon as accredited greater than 230 establishments, however by the point the Training Division ended recognition in August, that quantity had dwindled vastly.

As of early September, it accredited 44 establishments with 67 campuses, two-thirds of which take part within the Title IV monetary assist program. On the time, ACICS mentioned it will cease working by March 2024.

The Pittsburgh Profession Institute first began because the Western College of Well being and Enterprise Careers in October 1980, in accordance with its web site. A few years later, it was accredited by the Accrediting Bureau of Well being Training Faculties.

Finally, it was purchased by what was then generally known as Profession Training Corp., an organization repeatedly criticized over time for working shoddy for-profit establishments. That proprietor in 2008 modified the establishment’s identify from Western to the Sanford-Brown Institute, a now-shuttered line of for-profit faculties.

In 2014, earlier than the mass Sanford-Brown shutdown, one other firm, New Alternative Calling LLC, acquired what would grow to be the Pittsburgh Profession Institute.

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