Ontario shuts down Everest College

February 23, 2015

Citing financial concerns, Ontario’s Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities has suspended the operations of Everest College, a private career college with 14 locations in the province. Approximately 2,400 students and 450 staff have been affected by the move. Everest College is owned by the US-based Corinthian Colleges, which has been under investigation by the US government. The province said that it has allocated $3 M for students who wish to apply for refunds; students may also be eligible to transfer their tuition to comparable programs. "Our first concern is for the students and faculty affected by the suspension of all Everest College campus activities," said Minister Reza Moridi. Corinthian spokesperson Joe Hixson said that Ontario's action took the company by surprise. "We were informed this morning, just like the students were," he said. "We've been working with the ministry for the past few months to try to find a path forward, so this came, in our mind, out of nowhere." In a statement, Career Colleges Ontario (CCO) said that "this cessation is an adverse result of the US parent company ... terminating its operations in the United States last year ... CCO is diligently working alongside the MTCU to transfer existing Everest College students to alternative career colleges, while ensuring that all current students are properly accommodated." CCO News Release | Globe and Mail | CBC | National Post

Postscript: February 24, 2015

Everest College filed for bankruptcy protection on Friday, one day after Ontario shut down its 14 campuses in the province. Provincial Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities Reza Moridi said, "since the suspension occurred, the superintendent [of private career colleges] has been working diligently to put training completion plans into place for students. While this is still a challenging situation for students, Everest's bankruptcy does not change these ongoing efforts." Moridi also emphasized that the bankruptcy should not affect the province's ability to administer the Training Completion Assurance Fund set aside for Everest's former students. CBC