Following the news that Education Corporation of America abruptly closed its campuses, Steve Gunderson, President and CEO of Career Education Colleges and Universities, released the following statement:
“We concur with the U.S. Department of Education’s strong statement condemning Education Corporation of America’s decision to suddenly close its campuses. Innocent students are most at risk in these situations and they must be everyone’s priority.”
“We understand business decisions. But, sudden closures are the worst moments for our sector because they provide no time for students to transfer; and no time for staff to prepare. Thoughtful planning and communications can avoid such challenges. CECU has reached out to school leaders across the country, especially in the areas where closing campuses are located, asking them to help these students. We have a process in place where any schools willing and able to help will be connected with the leadership of CECU to facilitate such student transitions."
“However, it is simply not enough for our sector to take action after a closing. Because we prioritize our commitment to students, as part of our Higher Education Act Reauthorization proposal, our sector has committed to paying a $5 per student fee into a fund that would establish an Office of Continuing Education Services at the Department. The sole purpose of this Office would be to have a professional team within the Department work with troubled schools to develop plans that manage all student transfers in the event a closure become inevitable. We have advocated this for over two years, and we hope the new Congress will reauthorize HEA in ways that creates a formal structure to assist students in completing their education.”