Abandoned Business-School Students Desperate For Options

Ann McClure's picture

After the Sawyer and Butler Business schools abruptly closed last week, students such as Samantha Garcia reeled between despair and the hope that the state will be able to help them.

"I'm so lost it's not even funny," said Garcia, 22, a Hartford single mother of two who was about six weeks from completing a 13-month medical assistant program. "I'm angry and I'm really, really upset. We were almost done. We weren't at the beginning, we were at the end."

Like many of the students who attended the Sawyer Schools in Hartford and Hamden, or the Butler Business School in Bridgeport, Garcia said Sawyer's Hartford campus offered her the chance for a career that she wasn't sure she would ever have.

Garcia, who had dropped out of high school her junior year, financed her participation in the $22,000 program with a federal grant and a loan of about $10,000. Her grandparents helped her with baby sitting.

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