Increased Oversight of ITT and the Impact on Students

In recent years, ITT Educational Services, Inc. (ITT) has increasingly been the subject of state and federal investigations and this year it has twice been found out of compliance with its accreditor’s standards. Over time, ITT’s decisions have put its students and millions of dollars in taxpayer funded federal student aid at risk. In response, over the last couple of years, we at the Department of Education have increased our financial oversight over ITT and required the school to boost its cash reserves to cover potential damages to taxpayers and students.

These investigations are still ongoing and last week ITT still failed to address its accreditor’s concerns. In response, today we’re announcing further federal action: To protect prospective students and taxpayers, we’re no longer allowing ITT to enroll new students with federal aid. In addition, in case the school’s actions cause it to close, we’re increasing the amount of cash reserves it must send us and we’re ending its installment payment plan for the amount previously required. Finally, we’re slowing down when ITT receives student aid from the government to ensure that ITT is handling its finances properly.

As a current ITT student with federal loans, you have some options:

  1. You can continue your courses at ITT with your federal student aid. There’s no immediate change to your program.
  2. You can transfer your credits to a new school (if that school accepts them) and complete your education.
  3. You can pause your education and wait to see how this matter resolves itself in the coming months. If ITT closes before you finish your program and you don’t transfer your credits, you will likely be eligible to discharge your federal loans.

I imagine you have some questions. Let me try to answer a few of them for you.

I’m close to graduating. Can I finish my degree?

Yes, unless ITT chooses to close instead of continuing to teach students. If you’ve already started classes at ITT, you can continue using federal aid there as long as the school remains open. New students will not be able to use federal student aid for classes at ITT.

If ITT eventually closes, will I still have to repay my federal student loans?

If ITT closes you may be eligible for a closed school loan discharge. If we reach that point we’ll share information on that process as you consider your options through the Federal Student Aid’s announcement page.

I just recently enrolled at ITT, but I haven’t started classes yet. Can I still use federal aid?

No. If you are a new student who has never been enrolled at ITT in a previous semester, you cannot start classes at ITT in the fall semester of 2016 using federal student aid. I know this is probably a major disappointment and inconvenience, but it’s too risky. You should still pursue a higher education. You might want to use our College Scorecard to explore your options and find the program that’s right for you.

Will this impact my GI Bill benefits?

No. The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) will notify affected GI Bill students that, at this point, the Department’s actions do not directly affect their GI Bill benefits. These actions, however, do raise significant concerns about ITT’s financial viability. Current GI Bill students at ITT should carefully consider the potential impact that the Department’s actions may have on their educational goals.

If you are a GI Bill student and have questions about your GI Bill benefits, please contact the VA’s Education Call Center at 1-888-442-4551 or visit the GI Bill website. If you are eligible for the GI Bill and want to explore your education options, you can use the GI Bill Comparison Tool to find the program that’s right for you.

I already completed my degree at ITT. Is it worthless?

No. You completed your degree at an operational and accredited institution. Nobody can take away your credentials or the skills you gained.

I already completed my ITT program but I feel like I was defrauded. Can I get my money back?

The actions we’re taking against ITT today are based on the operational and financial risk they pose to students and taxpayers, not on a finding that they defrauded students. There are, however, a number of open federal and state investigations into ITT campuses. If those investigations find evidence of fraud or other illegal behavior surrounding your specific program, you might be eligible for relief.   You can also go to Federal Student Aid’s borrower defense page to learn more about how to file a claim if you believe the school misled you.

I’m nervous that ITT may close and I don’t want to start over. Should I transfer my credits?

That’s an option. It’s a choice that only you can make and one that you should consider carefully. Each student’s circumstances will be unique.

Here are a few key things to consider:

  1. Whether your credits transfer will be up to the new school. It’s likely to vary based on the type of program and school you’re considering.
  2. If you transfer your credits, you may not be eligible to have some or all of your federal loans discharged if ITT ultimately closes.
  3. Before you transfer, ask yourself: Is the type of program I’ve started still the right one for me? Will finishing it open up the career opportunities I want? You may want to check out our College Scorecard as you think about the answers to those questions.

Where can I go to get updates on what’s happening with my school? What’s the most reliable place for information?

Your school should update you directly. We’ll also post updates if there are major changes on Federal Student Aid’s announcement page.

Ted Mitchell is U.S. Under Secretary of Education.

241 Comments

  1. Im a nursing student that has completed all the classes and only needs the hesi exam my school just closed this morning while we were in class… im hoping i can just get my degree and transcripts and go take the nclex and skip the hesi somce the hesi was only a itt requirement amd not a state requirement.. Any thoughts or ideas to this?

  2. I am or I was a student at ITT-Tech. I just got an email this morning saying that they closed there schools as of today. I was just about to finish up my final semester too. Just sad…..

  3. Mow that the school is officially closed, how can currently enrollesld students acquire our transcripts so that we can transfer?

  4. What happens with students who signed over their Fl prepaid university plans to cover tuition? My son has only completed one semester and would need those funds to go to another school

  5. My daughter was in the nursing program. We paid her tuition using savings and not loans or grants but now do not get to finish get our degrees? Credits won’t transfer and it is too late to get into another program this semester. Are we just basically screwed out of tens of thousands of dollars and a year of her life?

  6. I feel like the dept. Of education should mandate that all other colleges accept the credits for those that want to transfer. My daughter and 1000’s of other only had 1 to 2 more quarters before they could set for the RN exam. To many of them gave up everything to get their RN degree and cannot start over from scratch. They WANT to finish. ( we need nurses )

    I’m sure not everyone will want to transfer, but come on, the government started this, now please help those who want to finish be able to do so.
    YOU should be able to work with other colleges. After all you are the government

    • I don’t know that “mandate” is a reasonable request in this situation, or helpful way to resolve . While I empathize for ITT Tech students and understand personally how devastating this is/will be, every student is responsible for touring, interviewing, and performing their own background check into a “program” they are investing thousands of dollars into—savings or loans. Understand and verify whether and where there exists any transferability or regard for the institution before matriculating.

  7. ITT has been good for a long time. I heard, Strayer, Keiser, and Phoenix will accept most credits earned .

  8. What if you finished your credits this past term/semester? Will you still receive a diploma considering all credits were completed while ITT was open? Just trying to find out any information considering no one can get through to them…
    In the event that someone doesn’t receive a diploma, will loans still have to be paid? considering all credits were completed..

  9. I have just finished my June qtr. And graduation exercises were to commence sept. 27 am I still walking? If not how can I get my transcript or diploma?

  10. I’m a quarter away from graduating on Nursing program. I was suppose to start on September 13th my last 2 classes and clinical. Today received e mail from ITT notifying their closure as of now. Where am I going to be able to finish and be able to sit for the NCLEX.

  11. So were we supposed to get a refund check after disbursement of federal funds. Because if so I haven’t received one and was told that my extra funds was going back to the fasa. How true is this. And if not how can I fix it

  12. I’m almost at the end of my first year it’s going to be my fourth quarter with all this going on how will this effect me?

  13. As a veteran I’m concern because I use almost all my GI Bill post 9/11 and I don’t have that money back I already call other institutions but the time that I have remaining for my post 9/11 doesn’t cover the rest of my degree, they just going to accept few credits. Please we need to sue this institution that take my GI bill benefits because after that and sacrifice my time as a veteran I dont have anything to finish my degree. What I should do?

  14. How am I suppose to transfer if my credits wont transfer from this garbage school? Ive literally lost a Year and a Half of my life. This is definatly not a good start for someone strait out of high school wouldnt you think? Any answers to none transfering credits would be greatly appreciated.

  15. Im suppose to start my bachelor’s sept 12 will i stiil sart and of i do and they close will it pay all my loans or just bachelor’s

  16. I wish they could figure out a way to stay open until all the students already enrolled can finish their degrees. They would continue to receive our financial aid.

  17. I called Student Support with questions regarding this issue and was literally spoon fed a bunch of lies. It has become completely obvious to me that ITT Technical Institute does NOT care about it’s students or their futures. I asked the representative about the e-mail I received from the Department of Education informing me on this issue along with the actions that have been taken against the school. According to paid to lie to me ITT Technical Student Support Services Representative, ACICS has been investigating ITT Technical Institute on a number of issues for a length of time now and because ACICS was “unable to find anything on the school pertaining to compliance issues, the department of Education decided to step in on their own terms and took action that they saw fit which was to shut down new enrollment of students at ITT Technical Institute.” Hmmm….under investigation on a number of issues…for a length of time… hmmm… I seriously doubt that the department of education whom makes plenty of money handing out loans to students like myself, would decide to shut down a school based on not finding anything during an ongoing investigation that ITT Tech is brought upon themselves through drawing attention to themselves by not complying with regulations. Then, the representative (who is paid to lie to me) goes on to tell me that “This does not even affect any of the current students at ITT Technical Institute and we don’t understand why the Department of Education took it upon themselves to send out an e-mail to all students instead of just the newly enrolled students. As long as you are an active student, you won’t have any problems continuing your education at ITT Technical Institute and the school has no intentions of closing any time soon.”
    I honestly could not believe my ears. My first reaction was to challenge his response to my question but it was so obvious that I was being told a bold face lie over the phone by someone who has been told to do so. I just accepted his answer and hung up and began searching for a new school….unfortunately.

  18. Please people, do not go to another for-profit school to finish your degree.
    I myself wen to ITT and fond myself looking to finish my degree to get my Undergrad. I found that Western Governors was the best choice. Not only were they non-for-profit, but they also excepted my credits. I could careless to tell people that I went to ITT, I now tell them I went to WGU.

    This is if you have the option to attend this school. Please do not further your debt for a degree, there are cheaper alternatives out there.

  19. I have been a student since March 2015 and I had to take this past term off. I am looking to re-enroll for the Sept 12th deadline and due to all this crisis, they are saying that right now nobody is being enrolled until coorperate makes a decision and nobody will use federal financial aid. I already have loans with ITT from previous terms, so why can I not enroll? I have three quarters to finish my nursing degree here and this is soo frustrating.

  20. I feel that the Department of Education has denied my right to an education with their all out war against “for profit schools” by changing the requirement for them and not other schools. We as ITT students should file a class action law suit against the Department of Education for denying us to an education.

  21. Can something be done to get the end of semester checks for unused money for the quarterly that was just ended.

  22. Are there any programs that will take my credits for nursing? I really don’t want to start over. If the school new this was going on and couldn’t resolve the issues they should have told students

  23. ITT, have told me different things about my refund check i spoke with PHEAA and i was informed that the money was disbursed at the end of the month. I also was also told by front desk that they receive the checks every Thursday and to call after 12 pm but whenever i call they tell me it didn’t arrive. Does this have to do with all the money that is unaccounted for? how should i proceed into finding out whats going on. it is now going into a new semester and all of my emails lets me know that my money should have been here by now.

  24. My student has had nothing but a positive experience at ITT Tech. He has completed four quarters and excelled. Career services has been assisting him with internship leads. This is a stark contrast to the public university he started at which was very unaccomadating to his needs and violated rules in the Americans with disabilities act. By the way, I see no mention about the 10% who are not using loans. Will we get money back? This whole issue of going in way over your head in loans has nothing to do with ITT. This is happening at all schools across the entire country. It is simple math. Don’t take the loan out if you can’t pay it back.

  25. I was looking for a school 2 years ago. One of my major concerns about ITT was that the credits would not transfer to any of the local colleges or universities. I enrolled in community college instead.

  26. Since the DOE has demanded all this occurs why have they not demanded the school help students by either making an agreement with another school to accept our credits OR remaining open until the currently enrolled students have completed their degrees? A lot of students have quit jobs to go to school full time to be successful in school, spent hours driving in traffic, rearranged schedules, and served inconvenience to their children/family, and more. It is disgusting that the DOE states they are protecting students by doing this…it seems greedy. Current students are getting screwed!! Speaking for myself and my classmates in canton, mi…we did not waste a year of our lives to be told our credits don’t transfer and we are basically out of luck!! Our school has told us jack sh*t about what’s going on and we are due for restart of classes on 9/12. We are getting zero answers. Sorry but “we are working on it” does not provide me a warm and fuzzy feeling. Faculty/staff are dropping like flies! Why is no one protecting the current students!?

  27. I had a good feeling about ITT when I first heard about it But since then, I was told after I got signed up, that this was going on! Since then, I have not been to class as I do believe that I was rushed into starting class that day! Wouldn’t that be considered as a false practice or a violation of federal law?
    I am not a happy customer!

  28. I’m only a few months in at ITT and wondering how you go about pausing your education until this matter is resolved?

  29. What would happen if someone like me, who’s gone to two or more campuses due to moving. And one of this campuses closes their doors? Would my student loans from that campuse be forgiven?

  30. I say out the summer quarter due to personal issues, I was due to re enroll this quarter but was informed that I couldn’t return. Now I am 8 quarters into the program and I can’t finish what do I do?

  31. Is Stautzenberger College in Maumee, Ohio and Brecksville , Ohio also on the list? Will they be investigated and how do I know so that I can apply for a loan discharge?

  32. I am a nursing student with only 2 more quarters left. I am so upset at how the DOE is practically forcing ITT to close, leaving the student with a big problem. Please help those enrolled and almost finished graduate. Help us transfer our credits.
    I have worked so hard for this degree!

  33. I have been an adjunct instructor for ITT for nine years and I have personally strived to provide an excellent class and learning experience for my students. Personally I don’t have a dog in this fight because I can teach in other institutions. However this really looks like a witch hunt by the Dept of Education. ITT provides a vocational learning experience for students who do not fit into other academic environments.

  34. Today,
    I’m US navy 2nd. Captain Louis Bernard Kapgang, PhD and I had discriminaed event sabotaging successfully at the Georgia Savannah technical school (2014-2015) and at the Florida Broward college on my Professional Pilot Program registration request during the years 2015 – 2016 after my tuition got disbursed by Sallie Mae financial firm and all these any inscription and student loan disbursement reimbursement. I’m questioning myself if this intrusion into our United of America internal affairs will be continuing like?
    Sincerely,
    Sir,Louis Bernard Kapgang, PhD
    US navy 2nd. Captain in charge of our US military command

  35. I graduated in 2008 from ITT as it stands it was hard enough getting a job. The school placement tried to make me a pizza delivery driver so I struggled for years to find stable work on my own.

    The school has fully maxed out all my loans in the private sector and the government sector. So I graduated owing $120,000+

    To add to this ITT near the end of my Associates degree told me they were no longer offering my degree of Web Design so I was transferred into the Bachelor’s program for Software Engineering. Not only did half of the classes I took become invalid but I was charged for them as well.

    I was young and told everything was fine that I would receive information upon graduation for how to repay the loans. It came months after graduation and a nice fat interest rate of 13% from Sallie Mae.

    Being young and promised a job that would pay for your bills is always promising but it has taken me until the past year or so to finally get enough experience to make up for the ITT degree. I was turned away from many jobs because they felt ITT was a lacking school.

    Here I am struggling with the debt and trying to start a family but its taking 1/3 of my income monthly to just pay the interest on the current loans. I dont see a way out at this point. Had I gone to a normal college my degree would have only been $30-$40K at the high end.

    I have been ripped off and because of it my life has suffered. Even when we tried to buy our first house the payments for my loans interest only kept us from being able to get something decent. Every choice we make in my life revolves around the payments of these loans. Every year they keep increasing despite trying to pay enough to cover the interest. It is a never ending cycle.

  36. My Son just completed his first semester and is supposed to return in 2 weeks, how will this effect him? Do we need to look elsewhere for his Studies?

  37. My son is supposed to graduate with this Associates this year. How are we to know who will accept his credits? And will His degree mean anything other than a piece of “toilet paper”? And what about all his student loans, If he has nothing I hope they will stop so he can use them Elsewhere!

    • Toilet paper might be worth more than a “degree” from ITTT.
      Check with your nearest state university to see if they will have pity on him and accept some of his credits as a transfer student.

    • Cindy,
      I am a current student with ITT. I am finishing out the semester as ITT has me handcuffed to do so unless I want to pay out of pocket for classes I will not even be attending. I am transferring out to a different University. What you need to do is call around to other schools and talk with them about the current situation as I did. The place I have chosen will accept my credits and classes I have taken up to this point. I am a yr into my AAS Network Systems Administration.

    • Cindy – I graduated from ITT in 2009 with my BS. Your son’s credits WILL NOT transfer to a state (non-profit) school. He will have to start over unless he attends another for-profit school who will accept the credit transfers (but WHY would he or you want to do that??). Due to for-profit schools’ set-up, their quarterly semesters do not fall in line with state schools’ normal semesters. I attempted to attend a state school three years after ITT, and had to start over.

  38. How would this effect someone who is going ahead for their Bachelors? I’m 2 quarters from finishing my AAS but had planned on going ahead with my Bachelors at ITT considering the fact that my credits would be worthless to transfer at this point. Does going into the Bachelors fit into the same category?

  39. No one gets a end of semester check as a refund of the student aid funds not used throughout the previous semester. This should be looked into because I just found out about it onAugust 29th,2016 at around 4:00pm.

    • I just finished my 1st quarter…. they didn’t share some info about my financial aid consolidation from previous college. Will I receive any kick back… wondering… what to do?

    • Matthew,
      I looked at the financial papers that were emailed to me for the financial aid for the year, and it has stated in there indirect costs not directly paid to ITT of nearly 11,000 dollars boosting my loan amounts up. I called ITT and no one had an answer as to where the money goes for room and board and personal expenses. And as with traditional universities you are right whatever monies are left over are either to be disbursed back to us or put aside in an account whatever we choose.

  40. I’m a few terms away from graduations, if we have the option to continue and graduate from ITT are we still going to pay back student loan? is the degree worthless? is ITT accredited to transfer to another school?

    • I am writing a story on whether ITT credits will transfer to other schools, I would like a student’s perspective on this. If you could email me at editor@occc.edu that would be very helpful.

  41. Itt is still an accredited school, so if you graduate while it is still opened / in business, you will take your NCLEX without any problem.

    • “This is ludacris…..We just want a quality education….”

      Your spelling of the word “ludicrous” would appear to reinforce that need.

    • University of Phoenix accepts credits “earned” from Northeastern Cayman Islands State Technical College.

    • University of Phoenix is no better that ITT Tech. Either way your degree is crap. Just like mine is now. Thanks OBAMA!

    • This reply relating to UOP, “Just because of the situation,” demonstrates why I would avoid for-profit colleges and universities. If true, decisions like this are made with a profit motive in mind, as opposed to the reasonable decision of educators. Faculty, not some bean counter are in the best position to determine the transferability of courses based upon their analysis of a course’s content as that relates to academic rigor.

      Yes some college out there will provide transfer, but you need to weigh the value of what you are getting. Search using Google. Include in your search the name of the college/university and “value of degree.”

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