CitiCollege students probably can transfer to other private schools, but books will not be provided and some will not receive living expenses they were promised at the financially troubled institution, officials say.
CitiCollege, a private business and trade school, has an Ogden campus and does business as Salt Lake City College in South Salt Lake. It filed for protection from creditors under Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Act on June 29, citing assets of $700,000 and liabilities of more than $1.4 million.However, the proceedings may cause delays for students who want to transfer, said Dixon Merrill, president of the Utah Private School Association.
In addition, students who received loans to attend CitiCollege will have to repay them regardless of whether they finish their schooling there or at another college, he said.
Both campuses were closed last week pending the outcome of an accreditation hearing in Washington, D.C., on Monday, when officials can appeal a decision to have the school's accreditation withdrawn.
Merrill said some of the association's member schools have agreed to take enrolled CitiCollege students on a "teach-out" basis, meaning the students won't be charged tuition.
He said if students have qualified for a student loan for the fiscal year that began July 1 and the money has not been disbursed, the loan can be transferred to the receiving school to help cover tuition costs.
Citicollege students say their loans and federal grants also covered textbooks and many say they were promised that any extra money would be returned to them for living expenses.
However, Merrill said other private schools cannot offer CitiCollege students the same deal.
"It's an unfortunate situation when a school closes, but a school that is picking a student up and offering to teach them (without charging tuition) . . . can't afford to provide books at no charge," he said.
As for living expenses, Merrill said not all schools provide such a program.
Painter's College of Beauty, which also offers business courses, has agreed to take CitiCollege business students. However, vice president Rita Painter said the school cannot afford to provide free books or living expenses.
Merrill said meetings will be scheduled with CitiCollege students to help them determine how best to continue their educations.
But he said the process may be difficult because CitiCollege attorneys have advised school officials not to release any records until there is clarification from the bankruptcy court as to which documents will be needed.
Merrill said CitiCollege president Stephen Collins has promised to cooperate and provide some basic information about the students.
"The private school association will be the ultimate repository of all records (of CitiCollege students)," Merrill said. "But it won't take place as quickly as we had thought."