The Art Institutes
Art Institutes 6512d06b66d23

The Art Institutes announce closure of 8 campuses across the United States

Sept. 26, 2023
About 1,700 students are affected by the closings.

The Art Institutes, a system of for-profit colleges, is closing its eight remaining campuses across the United States by the end of this month.

The New York Times reports that the system had suffered from low enrollment since the coronavirus pandemic. Before that, a loss of accreditation led to the shuttering of nearly 20 other locations in 2018.

The U.S. Department of Education said 1,700 students would be affected by the closing. The eight affected campuses: Atlanta; Austin, Texas; Dallas; Houston; Miami; San Antonio; Tampa, Fla.; and Virginia Beach.

The Art Institutes were often marketed as cheaper options, with some students saying they were quoted about $90,000 for a full degree’s tuition. One year of tuition at a prestigious alternative like the Rhode Island School of Design is about $58,700.

The school network traces its history back to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, which was founded in 1921. A Pennsylvania company named Education Management Corporation acquired the college in 1970 before expanding its portfolio and adding courses such as culinary arts, fashion design, audio production and video games. 

In 2015, Education Management Corporation settled claims with the Justice Department about illegal recruiting, consumer fraud and other claims.

Problems grew after a faith-based nonprofit called Dream Center Education Holdings acquired the schools in 2017. After settling a class-action lawsuit that said that four Art Institutes were misleading students into believing they were accredited institutions, all that remained of the brand was a handful of campuses.

About the Author

Mike Kennedy | Senior Editor

Mike Kennedy, senior editor, has written for AS&U on a wide range of educational issues since 1999.

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