The closure of all 79 campuses of Regency Beauty Institute sent shockwaves through the cosmetology industry. The Minnesota-based company posted a notice on its website on September 28 stating that it had closed.
The school apologized “for the abrupt nature of this information” in the statement. Why did the chain close? Basically, the school said it did not have enough money to continue operating. Regency vigorously denied any wrongdoing and blamed an inability to obtain financing with the current negative characterization of for-profit schools.
While the school blamed politicians, Minnesota’s US Senators are doing their best to help students that were affected by the closure. Senators Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken jointly wrote a letter to the US Secretary of Education, John King Jr.
The Senators asked the US Department of Education to forgive federal student loans for Regency students who chose not to transfer to another beauty school and for those who withdrew within about four months of its closing down.
In addition, the Senators stated that students who transferred their credits to a similar program at another school do not meet the standards for loan relief and asked that they be included in the “closed school discharge.”
In addition to being headquartered in Minnesota, Regency operated five campuses in the state. More than 400 Minnesota students were enrolled in them. In addition, hundreds of additional students attended Regency campuses in other states.
Numerous cosmetology schools have offered to take in former Regency students, but as of October 13, the school’s website did not list any schools in Minnesota. However, the Minnesota Cosmetology School offered to help the former students and make their transition as seamless as possible.
Cosmetology school administrators stress the importance of asking potential schools if they have had to shut down in the past, but Regency gave no indication that it was in trouble.