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Photo: Wikipedia Commons/PCBUSMED
Photo: Wikipedia Commons/PCBUSMED

Nearly 200 students of New York Career Institute (NYCI) have joined Plaza College in Forest Hills (Plaza) after NYCI decided to voluntarily cease operations in 2016.

On May 3, 2017, students and staff of NYCI officially began at Plaza with no loss of academic progress or financial aid.

Since its opening in 1941, NYCI was one of the only schools to offer a court reporting program in New York City. Prior to their closure, the New York State Education Department approved an agreement to usher the NYCI programs, students and staff to Plaza College.

To protect the students’ ability to complete their degrees and to minimize interruption to the students’ originally intended graduation dates, Plaza has accepted all earned credits by NYCI students. Plaza was also awarded the right to offer NYCI’s programs in court reporting, paralegal studies, medical billing and coding, and healthcare management.

Additionally, Plaza has frozen tuition and fees for active students at NYCI costs. Students who withdrew from the program in previous years can return to complete their education at the same cost until 2022.

“Normally, when students transfer to a new college, they lose up to half of their credits. By protecting the progress that these NYCI students have earned and keeping their costs from increasing, we were able to turn an upsetting situation into a positive reality,” said Dennis Byrns, former president of NYCI who has since joined the staff at Plaza. “This is also about protecting access to a profession – court reporting is a great field with many opportunities for motivated students.  It would be a shame if NYC residents could not access this career.”

Plaza is now the only college in New York City to offer a court reporting program.

Located one block from the Queens County Supreme Court, Plaza accelerated the completion of a brand-new, 20,000-square-foot student facility on the third floor of its campus.  The floor contains new classrooms and modern student learning facilities, including five technologically advanced computer labs.

“At first we were all shocked and upset that our school was closing,” a former NYCI student explained. “But now we realize it’s a good thing. Now I can just drive and park my car in the garage. Plaza’s campus is awesome.”

Dean Byrns added, “I like to say, it’s a very happy ending with an amazing new beginning.”

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