PITTSBURGH - 12:35 P.M. THURSDAY UPDATE: The Pennsylvania Department of Education confirms the permanent closure of the Art Institute of Pittsburgh on March 31. Almost 2,200 students are enrolled there.
Employees at the Art Institute of Pittsburgh are telling Channel 11 major layoffs have taken place at the school.
Channel 11's Courtney Brennan learned Thursday students are getting transcripts and that contractors are dismantling classrooms.
#BREAKING: Students getting their transcripts at the Art Institute of Pittsburgh. They tell Channel 11 that the offices are bare and that contractors are dismantling classrooms. They believe the school is going to shut down in the near future. #WPXI— Courtney Brennan (@WPXI_Courtney) January 31, 2019
Employees say they were given no notice and told last Tuesday that they would no longer have jobs.
Some people didn’t find out until they went to work on Wednesday and found that their ID cards didn’t work.
Channel 11's Courtney Brennan also learned a total of 325 local jobs were eliminated.
"It's just sad how they treated us," said Nicole Moon, who Moon worked in the enrollment department at the Art Institute of Pittsburgh for four and a half years. "A lot of us are living paycheck to paycheck and to cut us off dry like that. They just left us high and dry."
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The institute used to be a for-profit college that was owned by a Pittsburgh-based company called EDMC. In 2017, a nonprofit organization called the Dream Center Foundation acquired the facility.
Employees tell us they got an email from the Dream Center two weeks ago saying that the organization was going into federal receivership to help them deal with the vast amounts of debt they acquired from EDMC.
The Dream Center also operated the Art Institute in Phoenix, which closed in December.
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