HIGH POINT, NC -- Imagine waking up ready to start your last quarter of nursing school to find your school, out of nowhere, closed.
Mallory Mabe knows the feeling. She only had 12 weeks left of ITT's nursing program. Now doesn't know where to go.
"What do I do next? What do I do now?" Mabe said. "I've invested the last two years of my life and put my heart and soul into this and, where do I go from here?"
Those are questions ITT Tech isn't answering. The institute is blaming the Department of Education for banning ITT from enrolling new students who use federal financial aid.
“Our responsibility is first and foremost to protect students and taxpayers,” said U.S. Secretary of Education John B. King Jr.“Looking at all of the risk factors, it’s clear that we need increased financial protection and that it simply would not be responsible or in the best interest of students to allow ITT to continue enrolling new students who rely on federal student aid funds.”
The Department of Education released a statement listing the reasons for the ban. They said ITT doesn't meet standards such as "financial stability, including having adequate revenues and assets to meet its responsibilities."
The shutdown affected 40,000 students and 8,000 employees. All were notified via email.
But right now all Mabe is worried about is her future. The closest school that will accept her transfer credits is ECPI in Charlotte. ECPI's Greensboro campus doesn't have a nursing program comparable to the one Mabe was enrolled in at ITT.
ITT Educational Services says it is ceasing operations at all of its ITT Technical Institutes permanently.
The company says the closures are due to an investigation and sanctions by the U.S. Department of Education.
"It is with profound regret that we must report that ITT Educational Services, Inc. will discontinue academic operations at all of its ITT Technical Institutes permanently after approximately 50 years of continuous service," the company stated Tuesday. "Effective today, the company has eliminated the positions of the overwhelming majority of our more than 8,000 employees."
ITT Tech, known for its TV commercials, had three locations in Houston: on the north side, the west side and in Webster.
Last week the Associated Press reported the U.S. Department of Education banned the for-profit college chain from enrolling new students who use federal financial aid.
(© 2016 WFMY)