On January 7, 2019, Jonathan Vogel appeared on WSOC-TV (Charlotte) news to discuss what college students should do if their school suddenly closes.
Vogel noted that students who seek to transfer should ensure that they obtain a copy of their transcript and any school catalogs, course guides, and course syllabi. If they have earned a credential (degree/certificate) from the college prior to its closing, then they should ensure that they physically obtain it.
With respect to the transfer of credits, the receiving school will likely examine whether the prior school was accredited, whether the credits were for on-campus or online courses, and whether the courses will be accepted for general education (elective) credits or for program (major/minor) credits.
Importantly, students with federal student loans should consider whether to apply to obtain a closed school loan discharge, which would discharge 100% of the student loan debt. However, even if the student does not apply for that discharge, if the borrower has not enrolled in another college within three years after the school closure (and the closure occurred on or after November 1, 2013), then the government will automatically discharge the student loans.
Jonathan A. Vogel, a former deputy general counsel with the U.S. Department of Education and a former federal prosecutor, is the managing attorney of Vogel Law Firm PLLC, an education law firm focused on legal issues that arise in K-12, higher education, and student loans.