MESQUITE, Texas - Another vocational school with campuses across the country just shut down.
After 50 years, Regency Beauty Institutes closed down its 79 locations across the U.S. – including several campuses in North Texas.
"Permanently closed” signs were placed on the doors of the Regency locations in Mesquite and Plano Thursday morning.
Some students say they were alerted via text Wednesday night about the closings while others were notified about it through emails or phone calls.
In a statement, the institute said a number of factors contributing to its closure including a lack of funding, a drop in the number of cosmetology students and a negative portrayal of for-profit schools.
“This is not another case of a school being forced to shut down because it was accused of wrongdoing. We held ourselves to high educational and ethical standards. The environment is simply not one that allows us to remain open. We diligently explored a range of strategic options that would benefit our students, teachers, and staff - and allow us to remain open. Unfortunately, those efforts were not successful,” Regency said.
Students say they are shocked and left to figure out what to do next.
“I get a little notification that they are closed. Of course, I was immediately in tears,” said student Katt Burk. “It was something that we just didn't know how to handle. A lot of people are angry. A lot of people are upset.”
Unlike ITT Technical Institute, Regency says it was not being investigated or sanctioned for any wrongdoing.
Representatives from competing cosmetology schools, like AVEDA institute of Dallas, say they want to help the students accomplish what they set out to do.
“I think that's the big thing for them is to not have to start over,” said Jennifer Haak with AVEDA. “So how do we accommodate them with our curriculum and give them a chance to finish.”
The Regency website advises students to contact their loan servicers directly and to work with financial aid counselors if they plan on attending another school.
AVEDA officials say they plan to reach out to help all the students and staff who were affected. They will host a career fair on Oct. 6.