The University of Phoenix is shutting down 115 brick-and-mortar locations including 25 of their main campuses and 90 satellite learning centers. The shut-down will affect 13,000 of their students, which is about 4% of their student body of 328,000. The University of Phoenix is known for serving their classes online. The University is also laying off around 800 employees out of their staff of around 17,000 according to Apollo Group SVP Mark Brenner. Apollo Group is the parent company of the University of Phoenix.
Once the 115 locations are closed down, the University of Phoenix will have a nationwide network of 112 locations and a physical presence in 36 states, D.C., and Puerto Rico.
The University of Phoenix enrollment is down since the past 2 years because of the increase in online competition from other schools including nonprofit and public universities. The University of Phoenix was also recently hit with negative publicity about recruiting abuses, low graduation rates, and high default rates. To counter the negative publicity, the University of Phoenix introduced a new program which involved a free trial at the school.
?We?ve said publicly that about 20 percent of the students in our free three-week online orientation program either don?t complete the program or don?t enroll,? stated Mr. Brenner. The University of Phoenix also announced a tuition freeze last week for students that remain consistently enrolled.
Students that are affected by the closings will have the option to transfer to the online classes. The company set up a hotline (866) 992-3302 for anyone that has questions also.