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Argosy University closes Chicago campus, others across nation

Argosy University. | Sun-Times file photo

PHOENIX — Argosy University’s Chicago campus has closed, according to the court-appointed receiver for Dream Center Education Holdings.

“Argosy University, Chicago has closed, said the receiver, Mark Dottore. “We have worked day and night since the institution entered into receivership under Dream Center Education Holdings to find the best path forward for students.

“We are extremely disappointed with this outcome but continue to provide services to students to help them transition to one of the dozens of higher education institutions offering assistance to them or, where they choose to do so, to apply for student loan discharge.”

The statement applies to the “majority” of campuses.

Students were told in emails Wednesday that campuses across the country could close as soon as this week.

An email to Phoenix students from Phoenix Campus President Anthony Spano says the site is “at risk of closure this Friday, March 8” because of the school’s loss of federal aid access.

The emails from campus administrators said that unless a qualified buyer steps in, or another university comes on board to teach out the students, the campuses would close.

Argosy’s financial mess has grown over the past few months. After Argosy’s parent company, Dream Center Education Holdings, couldn’t pay its creditors, a federal court in Ohio appointed a receiver.

In February, The Arizona Republic revealed that thousands of Argosy students across the country had not been paid financial aid funds they were owed, to the tune of $13 million.

Since then, the U.S. Department of Education yanked Argosy’s eligibility to use federal aid programs, a significant threat to the university’s future.

On Monday, a court document filed on behalf of the receiver said Argosy and Dream Center had altered submissions to the U.S. Department of Education to get access to student financial aid funds, which were then spent on other expenses, like payroll.

The school has branches in 11 states, according to its website. It is based in Orange County, California.