New Brunswick

Locked-out Atlantica students can finish program at Eastern College

Students who were locked out of Atlantica College on Wednesday, after the school's computers were seized by creditors, have been offered a chance to finish their 3D animation program at Eastern College in Saint John.

Students could get a full refund on any amount of paid tuition instead

Students who were locked out of Atlantica College will be able to finish their program at Eastern College. (CBC)

Students who were locked out of Atlantica College on Wednesday, after the school's computers were seized by creditors, have been offered a chance to finish their 3D animation program at Eastern College in Saint John.

Or, they could get a full refund of any portion of the $34,000 tuition that they've already paid.

Eastern College president Stuart Bentley says it's a good example of how students who enrol in private institutions in New Brunswick are protected.  

"The training completion fund is contributed to by every private college in the province so that students can invest in their education with confidence that they'll be able to complete it," he said.

The mandate of the fund, under New Brunswick's Private Occupational Training Act, is to provide consumer protection for students while also supporting a vibrant private training industry.

Eight students were registered in the Atlantica program when they arrived earlier this week at the Market Square location to find all their workstations gone.

The students say the computers were supposed to be included in their tuition, and they had expected to take them home upon graduation.

Will buy new computers

Bentley said if it's necessary to purchase new computers for the students, that will be done at no cost to the students.  

He said the plan is to get the Atlantica instructors to move over to Eastern and help the class pick up where the course left off.

The hope is to have everyone starting work again June 3 and on target to graduate on time.

Amber McGuire-Oursien studied animation at Atlantica College and has now been left in educational limbo. 7:02

Former Atlantica student Amber McGuire-Oursien said she felt much better after hearing the presentation Friday morning.

She said it was reassuring to know that she could choose between finishing her course or asking for her money back.

The 29-year-old, who hoped to get work in the video game or movie industry, said she would take at least the weekend to think about it.

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