Anthem College closes 2 Valley campuses, students scramble for new schools

PHOENIX - On Friday Anthem College closed its doors, leaving a lot of students out of a lot of money.

The school failed to sell its network of nine campuses, leaving its two Valley locations no choice but to close their doors.

Anthem is a private college, offering everything from dental assistant and pharmacy technician programs, to nursing, criminal justice or paralegal programs.

Teri Stanfill, the Executive Director of the Arizona State Board for Private Postsecondary Education, told ABC15 they have secured partnerships with Kaplan University, American International University and Trident University for online students.  

But they’re still working on students who attended classes on campus.

Stanfill said they are working with both Carrington and Fortis Colleges to take in transfer students in Anthem’s Dental Technology and  X-Ray Technician programs.

The board hopes to soon announce solutions for Anthem’s Veterinarian programs. 

Alexis Lopez, a student at Anthem College, was stunned to learn through the rumor mill that Anthem College was shutting down.  

The young mother of three was studying to be a veterinarian tech and has only three courses to complete.

“It’s upsetting, it’s so upsetting that I am so close,” she said.

Even more upsetting is that while other students have a chance for the federal government to forgive their loans already paid out to the college, Lopez paid out of her own pocket.

“Financially, right now I’m homeless,” Lopez said.

She told ABC15, she gave up her home in exchange for an education.

“Coming to school was my way of doing something better for my kids.”

She and other students ABC15 spoke with are worried whether Anthem’s month-long course credits will transfer to colleges that use the semester system.

“I feel like I have to put those two years in all over again, find another school that hopefully will take us -- but our credits aren't easy to transfer -- It's basically starting all over,” said Alexis.

Alexis is not alone with her dismay or concerns.

“You know it's like knock me down. I was looking forward to finishing, working with people with special needs and then we come out here for information and they didn't give us any," said Jennifer Swiger, an Anthem student.

“I felt like the whole think was just a bad dream," said Sydney Pauker, also an Anthem student.

Stanfill said the board is working on setting up a hotline, email and webpage for students to get information, but the sites won’t be ready until next week.

Once it’s up and running, students will be able to get information on their here.

The hotline will be operational on Tuesday, September 2. The number is: 1-800-987-0110.

Or you can email questions here.

The board is asking students to be patient.


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