More questions than answers for Sawyer School students - ABC6 - Providence, RI and New Bedford, MA News, Weather

More questions than answers for Sawyer School students

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By Abbey Niezgoda

For a short week, it has been a long couple of days for Kelly Bollinger. The binders filled with homework are all she has left of the medical assistant degree she was working on at the Sawyer School, which closed its doors earlier this week without notice.

"This is what I actually worked my hardest on," Bollinger said. "And for it to go to waste, it's a shame."

Instead of going to class, she has had to go to meetings with officials and lawyers, searching for answers. It has been radio silence from the school's presumed owner Michael Kelly until now.

"Mr. Kelly has provided us with a way to access the Sawyer School," Board of Higher Education  spokesman Michael Trainor said. "Our goal is to identify where all of the students records are."

The locks were already being changed at the location in Providence so those records can be handed back to the students who want to finish their degrees elsewhere. A couple of schools have already offered to accept them, but they still do not know how that will impact their financial aid,if they will ever get their tuition dollars back from Sawyer or if their credits will even transfer. 

"We're looking at the curriculum at Sawyer and working with, for example, Lincoln Tech to see what would be applicable for a transfer and what might not be," Trainer said.

"I'm hopeless right now that things are ever going to get figured out," Bollinger said.

The Board hopes to have the records back to students like Bollinger by sometime next week, but with so many unanswered questions, it is easy to feel overwhelmed.

"This is the closest I've ever come to completing something," Bollinger said. "I was going to be the first of the four of us to go to college and now I can't do that because there's no school."

The Board has added extra manpower to the telephone hotline in order to help Sawyer students. Anyone affected can call: 401-277-5018. 

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