Local students at ITT may have to start from scratch

Students report trouble accessing transcripts
Posted at 6:24 PM, Sep 07, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-07 18:24:48-04

Jeremy Xiong moved from Georgia to attend ITT in Tampa.

"I don't know what to think right now. I don't want to go back up because I already spent a lot of money to come down here," he says.

Eduardo Puebla dreamed of becoming an electronic engineer.

"I was home and I saw it on the news," he says that's how he found out his dream had been put on hold.

Today he wanted to see it for himself.

"I came here to look and it's closed just closed," he said.

When ABC Action News called ITT to get some answers, we were met with a voice robot telling us to leave a message but then five seconds later the robot says the message box is full and the phone hangs up.

The options for ITT students are as limited as they are confusing. Students will likely get their federal loan debt forgiven, but not private loans. And they will not be able to re-use Pell Grants.

And now credit for the courses they completed at ITT may be null and void along with ITT's accreditation.

The U.S. Department of education cut off federal aid to ITT after it failed to meet government standards.

One bright spot: Hillsborough Community College is working to accept ITT students, but their credits may not be transferrable. 

"Bringing them into HCC is not an issue, it's a matter of what are we going to be able to accept of their course work that they have already accomplished," says Joe Bentrovato, Dean of Services at HCC.

To make matters worse, ITT students tell ABC Action News they can't even access their transcripts and no one is helping them. Without transcripts, the students have no proof they were ever at ITT.

Shut down and shut out.

We called Keiser University and Erwin Technical College and they say they will work with ITT students, but accepting their credits will be a case by case basis.