“Welcome to Argosy University,” the university’s website reads. “With the help of convenient locations, flexible class formats, and supportive faculty, begin your journey to the career you want at Argosy University.”
Not any longer, unfortunately for those involved.
Announcements have been made that Argosy University will come to a close Friday. The following campuses are run by Argosy:
- Atlanta Campus
- Argosy’s Online Campuses
- Art Institute of Hollywood
- Art Institute of San Diego
- Chicago Campus
- Honolulu Campus
- Los Angeles Campus
- Northern Virginia (Arlington, VA)
- Orange County (Irvine, CA)
- Salt Lake City
- San Francisco Bay Area (Alameda, CA)
- Twin Cities (Eagan, MN)
- Western State College of Law at Argosy University (Irvine, CA)
CBS Local in Minnesota has called the Argosy University‘s closings “an all-out scramble,” for at least one thousand metro college and grad school students.
What happened to cause the for-profit college to close?
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Argosy University Got Cut Off From Both Federal & State Financial Aid Funding
The university has roughly 8,800 students across its Argosy campuses, and it’s reportedly been a nightmare for them as news of the university’s closing hit. The university was said to specialize in career training, but was forced to announce its closing once its parent company went into “receivership.”
Receivership is a kind of bankruptcy. In addition to going into receivership, the school got cut off from receiving any more federal and state financial aid for its students. The university took the situation from bad to worse by withholding grant and loan dollars that it was supposed to give to its students–and then it used those monies to instead cover its operating expenses, according to reports.
In its Minnesota branch alone, Argosy is owing some $1.3 million to Minnesota students, as reports have stated.
2. Argosy Applied to Become a Non-Profit Organization & Was Denied by Federal Officials
The plan that Argosy’s parent company and Los Angeles-based Christian nonprofit, Dream Center, had in buying Argosy schools back in 2017, was to convert the schools into nonprofits. But the plan failed.
Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that Argosy was indeed making plans to become a non-profit institution. But, unfortunately for the university, federal education officials shut down Argosy’s non-profit application just last week, denying its attempts.
Last week, the university’s students were denied receipt of publicly subsidized loans and other aid, as the federal government disqualified Argosy from receiving the aid. State grant and loan programs have also been set to discontinue.
3. Argosy University Owes Its Students a Ton of Money
According to Atlanta Journal-Constitution, students of Argosy await an estimated $13 million in financial aid, across the nation. Rather than having passed on their previously received financial aid to students, Argosy used those students’ funds for payroll, legal fees, and other internal expenses, reports say.
To deal with the fallout of Argosy’s actions, some now-former Argosy students have started doing some online fundraising to raise money for those facing eviction. Such students did not receive, and therefore could not pay, their rent with their financial aid. Students in those situations have often borrowed money in excess of their tuition and school fees so that they can pay for their living expenses like rent or childcare.
4. Argosy University Had Planned to Find a Buyer to Prevent It from Closing
A campus president for Argosy Minnesota, John Slama, reportedly wrote students on Wednesday to alert them Argosy would be closing if no buyer emerged by Friday. No buyer did.
The U.S. Department of Education cited Argosy’s failure to pay credit balance refunds owed to its students and parents as the reason that Argosy cannot meet their required standards.
Slama noted that Argosys could possibly find a “transfer partner,” and that the university would be working on various options for students who choose not to continue their educational program to have their federal loans discharged.
5. Argosy University Is One of Many For-Profit Colleges to Have Closed or Been Shut Down Recently
Reports explain that the reason that for-profit colleges close at higher percentages than nonprofits is that they spend so many advertising dollars attempting to recruit students: their focus has been shown to be more on spending those dollars and attracting more and more students, than on actual instruction.
You may have heard about many for-profit universities shutting down all over the country. Trump University, a non-accredited institution, best known as a real estate training organization and for-profit education company, closed within years.
Georgia, which has been said to have roughly 140 for-profit colleges and universities, closed 18 of them in the past three years.
Other for-profit-higher-education companies have closed in places like Minnesota, examples of which include: McNally Smith College of Music, Globe University, and the Minnesota School of Business.