Anamarc College shutters campuses, sends staff packing
POSTED: Tuesday, July 1, 2014 - 11:23pm
UPDATED: Friday, July 4, 2014 - 9:28am
EL PASO (KTSM) — Summer break came early for the nearly 500 students of El Paso’s Anamarc College.
Amid rumors of bankruptcy, the medical technical school’s campuses closed Tuesday due to “cash flow” problems.
“We heard rumors, but that was it,” said Juan Gonzalez, a student of Anamarc. “Yesterday, the owner of the school came and talked to us saying, ‘You know what? We’re just going to go on vacation early.'"
Gonzalez said students were told classes could resume on July 14.
But Tuesday afternoon, that early vacation appeared to become permanent, at least for faculty and staff.
“[Anamarc’s owner] says they’re still having cash flow issues and that all the employees were terminated,” said one student who didn’t want to be identified.
NewsChannel 9 spotted staff members carrying boxes full of personal belongings from the school to their vehicles Tuesday evening.
Other students said during a heated meeting with Anamarc co-founder and chief executive officer Ana Maria Piña Houde, the owner, told them the college is working on a ‘transition plan’ for all students in all of the school’s programs.
The students said Houde did not offer specifics on the transition.
Houde founded Anamarc in 2000 with her husband Marc, the college’s chief financial officer. The college released a statement saying, in part, that the college is working hard to find a “best solution”.
The Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools told NewsChannel 9 it has given Anamarc leaders until Friday to formulate a plan.
Licensed vocational nurse student Danielle Rodriguez said she had suspicions that the school was having financial issues.
“We’ve been working on broken mannequins,” Rodriguez said. “It all makes so much sense now.”
Anamarc’s troubles crept into Tuesday evening’s town hall meeting hosted by El Paso Congressman Beto O’Rourke.
O’Rourke told students that because many received federal student loans, he would assist with any federal investigations, should they be warranted.
Meanwhile, Gonzalez – with his transcript in hand – said after months of hard work, he and his classmates are now left hanging.
“Students that were here 12 months, a year…what’s going to happen to them?”