Students Blindsided by Art Institute of California Campus Closure

Students are outraged they were not given notice that a San Diego higher education institute is shutting down.

On Friday the Art Institute of California in Mission Valley closed for good.

"It kind of blindsided everybody," said student Randy LaVea.

Students were wondering why they weren't told of the closure until a few days before it happened.

"I was working two jobs and then I had to stop working to focus on school and then it just shuts down," added LaVea.

He said with no job he can't afford to stay in San Diego and will most likely have to move in with his family in Florida.

For the students on the verge of graduating, questions of if they'll be able to or if their credits will transfer are still unanswered by staff.

"To find out it all came crashing down just before the finish line is devastating," said Fashion Design student Moriah Stalker.

Stalker is a disabled veteran and also held a job through the school as a tutor, which helped her make ends meet and pay for tuition.

"They told me I lost my job as a tutor here on Tuesday," said Stalker.

Other students lost their jobs through the institute as well.

Six other Art Institutes of California have closed too amid financial and legal troubles, meaning many programs don't have comparable classes nearby.

"The closest I can find is about an hour away," said Damien Friedman, who was studying game art and design.

Local alumni of the San Diego campus are now stepping up to help.

"We can try to connect individuals to jobs and training," said April Rieger, who graduated last year and now works for Girls in Tech San Diego. "If students need anything, don't hesitate to reach out to us."

The U.S. Department of Education said it's stepping in to assist students with automatic loan cancellations and school records requests.

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