Regency Beauty Institute abruptly shuts its doors

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A beauty school in Durham abruptly shut its doors for good (WTVD)

Regency Beauty Institute, a national chain of for-profit beauty schools, closed its doors earlier this week. Now, local students are scrambling to figure out what to do next.

Brianna Moore is a student at Regency Beauty Institute in Durham, one of the chain's 79 campuses. She said she completed 1400 of the 1500 practice hours needed and had a graduation party planned before the school closed.

"I was due to graduate in 2 and a half weeks, so I was getting ready for state boards, state board preps, finishing practicals and all of that. So now I'm left wondering where so I go from here," Moore said.

Regency beauty school is not the first chain of for-profit schools to shut down recently. Students from ITT Technical Institute are still figuring out what to do after the school closed its doors earlier this month.

Brianna said she's tried reaching out to the school but has yet to hear back.

"We're still not getting any answers because they're not answering us. Corporate is not answering the phones," Moore said.

Moore said she feels bad for her friends who are in the middle of completing their hours, and frustrated about the situation in general.

"I'm really upset because I felt like I was finally getting ready to cross the finish line, into something that I wanted to do for the rest of my life, and this happens," she said.

The school in Durham officially closed its doors to students picking up their beauty supplies Friday at 1 p.m.

Regency Beauty Institute issued the following statement on their website:

"It is with great sadness that we announce that after more than 50 years of educating cosmetology students, Regency Beauty Institute is permanently closing on September 28, 2016. This closure affects all 79 campuses.

This is incredibly difficult news for everyone affected: especially our students, teachers, and staff. We recognize that some of you may be finding this out for the first time by reading this. We are truly sorry for the abrupt nature of this information.

How did this happen? In short, the organization does not have the cash to continue to run the business. There are multiple intertwined reasons: declining numbers of cosmetology students nationwide, a negative characterization of for-profit education by regulators and politicians that continues to worsen and, in light of these factors, an inability to obtain continued financing.

This is not another case of a school being forced to shut down because it was accused of wrongdoing. We held ourselves to high educational and ethical standards. The environment is simply not one that allows us to remain open. We diligently explored a range of strategic options that would benefit our students, teachers, and staff - and allow us to remain open. Unfortunately, those efforts were not successful."

Read more about the school's closing here.

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