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Former Vista College employees say they are still owed after College Station campus closed

Former employees are frustrated how Vista College ended.
The lawsuit also alleges the school failed to provide educational services or tuition refunds...
The lawsuit also alleges the school failed to provide educational services or tuition refunds despite contractual obligations.(KBTX)
Published: Oct. 20, 2021 at 4:37 PM CDT
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COLLEGE STATION, Texas (KBTX) - Former Vista College employees are speaking out after the College Station campus and others abruptly closed this month.

It’s left former staff and students with many questions. Don Beavers says when Vista College closed he lost two sources of income.

“I’ve taught in the business classes, IT classes, medical classes and HVAC classes,” said Don Beavers of Snook. He and his wife were both instructors at Vista College.

“I worked for almost six years and she for seven,” he recalled.

All that changed Oct. 8 when Vista College permanently closed. He said they and other employees are still owed for accrued vacation time.

“I know some people had as many as 170 hours of vacation that were still due to them and that can amount to $4,000, $5,000 for an instructor and under the circumstances when you just got laid off that would be nice to have in the bank,” said Beavers.

He started to see warning signs earlier this summer. Back in August, Vista College’s CEO Jim Tolbert talked to KBTX about suspending in-person enrollment.

“We were seeing significant decreases in our school population, and so for the best interest of the students, we decided to suspend enrollment,” said Tolbert on Aug. 9. “The reason we did that is to make sure we had all the financial resources at our disposal to make sure the students currently enrolled in school get exactly what they paid for.”

But students and staff say that didn’t happen. Beavers and his wife are caught up on their paychecks from Vista, but other employees say Vista was slow getting them their final paychecks.

“It’s going to be wait-and-see and I’m going to be very curious to follow the class action lawsuit that the students are engaging in and I think that’s something that we as instructors need to think about,” said Beavers.

He said they didn’t close down properly.

“It was disgusting. I mean frankly I don’t know how they and all along Tolbert would say, ‘We’re in this for our students. We’re dedicated to them. Nothing’s more important than our students and our instructors for those students,’ and then boom pull the rug out form under everybody. But especially the students,” said Beavers.

We’ve left messages for Vista College’s CEO and leadership but have not heard back.

They also had Texas campuses in Beaumont, El Paso, Killeen, Longview and Lubbock.

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