Bryman shutters Bay Area campuses

Bryman College today closed BioHealth College in San Jose and its other for-profit colleges in Hayward, Los Angeles, San Francisco and San Jose, according to the California Bureau of Private Postsecondary Education.

Staff members of the bureau, which regulates private colleges in the state, were made available this morning to assist students of the colleges, owned by San Jose-based Bryman, officials reported on the bureau’s website.

Students of the colleges that shut down should obtain their academic, attendance and financial aid records as soon as possible in order to apply to transfer to another college, submit a claim to recover tuition money or ask for a student loan discharge from the U.S. Department of Education, bureau officials said.

The closure of BioHealth, which offered courses in biotechnology, pharmacy technology, medical assisting and business administration, came 10 days after Bryman filed for bankruptcy, according to court documents.

Bryman’s chief executive officer and debtor Sam Shirazi filed a petition for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in San Jose on July 18. Shirazi cited from 50 to 99 unsecured creditors, $0 to $50,000 in assets and $1 million to $10 million in debts, the company reported in its petition.

The chief executive’s San Jose attorney David Boone could not be reached for comment. No one answered the phone today at BioHealth College, located at 1631 N. First St. in San Jose.

According to the state bureau, students wanting to continue in their former programs of study at Bryman must contact the new school they wish to attend to see if it would accept credits for transfer or permit them to complete a similar or identical program through a “teach-out” at no additional cost.

Those who obtained federal student loans but do not transfer their credits or complete their programs may apply to have their loans forgiven through a closed school discharge from the Department of Education, according to the bureau.

Shirazi started BioHealth College in 2003, after selling Computer Training Academy, a school he founded in 1990, to Corinthian Colleges in 2000, according to BioHealth College’s website.

Corinthian, in an agreement reached on July 3 with the Department of Education, said it would sell or close its 85 Heald College, Everest College and WyoTech Technical Schools across the county, according to the company’s July 7 Form 8-K filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

The Department of Education announced on June 12 that it had increased its oversight on Corinthian, stating that the company used faulty job placement information in its marketing materials, altered grade and attendance records and failed to provide records of enrollment and job placements for students.

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