LOWER BURRELL (KDKA) – Some local college students in complete shock.

Without prior warning, the students at a local arts college were told their school was shutting down.

Now, the closure of the Oakbridge Academy of Arts is causing concern and confusion among the students.

Their sister school up the street in Lower Burrell – the Newport Business Institute – also shut down with no warning.

The announcement was made Monday afternoon right after lunch.

“About one o’clock we were called into a meeting. All the teachers gathered there. The one, she kind of avoided looking at us, turns around crying and tells us that as of now we are closing down,” Kylee Scott said.

About 75 students were given a letter from co-owners of both schools that read in part:

“It is with deepest regret that I must inform you that the schools must close. We have done everything possible with the United States Department of Education to avoid this terrible situation, but were not successful.”

Michelle I. Mullen went on to say, “We will be providing you with contact locations of school records for any future transcript needs.”

However, students say that just isn’t enough.

“I feel like I’m going to have to start all over again,” Kaytelin Cowen said.

The schools have a two-year associates program and tuition runs more than $21,000 a year.

One student said they just paid tuition for this semester.

Attempts to reach Mullen at her Oakmont home were unsuccessful.

“There’s questions that aren’t being answered. We’re victims of irresponsible poor planning. They should have let us know sooner,” Jacquelyn Barker said.

A recent letter from owners blames the closings on challenging economic times.


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