End the control by the Corporate Overlords and SAVE OUR EDUCATION!
  • Petitioned The Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale

This petition was delivered to:

EDMC / Goldman-Sachs
The Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale

End the control by the Corporate Overlords and SAVE OUR EDUCATION!

    1. Petition by

      Vaughn Reynolds

      North Miami Beach, FL


Please join our Facebook Group for updates:

We have begun to organize representatives from campuses around the US including Fort Lauderdale, Nashville, Atlanta, Minnesota and Orange County!

We can’t allow EDMC and Goldman-Sachs to get away with their treatment of the value of a good education!

The reality of our country is that big investment corporations are running educational institutions. Fundamentally this seems backwards, especially when the CEO of EDMC was compensated with a total of $13,185,559 in 2011, yet they are laying employees off from campuses in droves because these are ‘difficult times in American higher education’. Yeah, $13m is a pretty rough year for ONE person. Imagine how many instructors that could save.

We have some MAJOR things coming to combat this, but we need patience from everyone. We are going to organize this and attack in a way that they couldn’t expect. We will be underestimated, and we like that. It means their guard will be down!


The Art Institute has a Mission Statement* as follows:

"The mission of Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale as an undergraduate institution of higher education is to provide quality education by promoting a culture of learning with a commitment to excellence in curricula and teaching that leads to the successful launch of student careers."

And then claims that...

"To live our mission effectively, we are dedicated to the achievement of the following goals:

- Develop and maintain staff and faculty who are dedicated to student success and academic quality."

Obviously whoever made this decision to layoff based on seniority forgot the mission statement!

* Source: http://www.artinstitutes.edu/fort-lauderdale/about/mission-statement.aspx



Employees Affected: (working list; 31 of 45)


Carlos Jimenez (Computer Technician)
Greg Metzger (Checkout)
Mike Crary (Print Center MB)
Phillip Mueller (Media Specialist - Photo / Video)
Val Vigil (Print Center HW) 

Catherine Ziegler (Library)
Christy Denton (Academic Advisor)
Gili Rabone (Academic Advisor)
Jennifer Arreguin (Admin Assistant)
Maria Barron (Vice President of Finance)
Roni Braver (Academic Advisor)
Shelia Getman (Academic Advisor)
Scott Conner 

Linda Taylor (Purchasing)
Andrew Lyman 

Andre West (Chair)
Chelsea Rousso
Heather Shea 

Amy Phillips (Chair)
Brook Pruitt
Kevin Smith 

William Cadeaux 

Graphic Design:
Chriss David (Chair)
Kelly Bennett
Paul Kane 

Media Arts and Illustration:
Brett Baker
Howard Katz
Jonathan Hunt
Kim Maxwell
Trina Nicklas (Chair)

Industrial Design:
Patricia Grullon

*****CALIFORNIA - LOS ANGELES (Santa Monica)

Video Production Full Time Faculty:
David Schreiber (Video, Department Chair)
Jessica Hoffman
Matthaeus Szumanski
Steve Gerbson
David Garrison
Micheal Libonati (Program Chair)
Rosa Farre (VFX, Animation)
Peter Gend (VFX, Animation)
Nick Kozis (Animation) 

9 Academic Directors
2 Academic Advisors
2 Full Time Instructors 

*****HOUSTON (Main Campus)
34 Total. Names pending.

27 layoffs! Departments possibly closing due to a lack of instructors! 

62 layoffs! Names pending.


David Sanchez

Claude Cevasco
Suzanne Sorel 

Nancy Bonnet (Academic Director)

Josh Kanies (Academic Director)
Heather Scott 

Graphic Design:
Crystal Mitchell (Academic Director)
Paul Thens
Denise Snow

Media Arts and Animation:
Li Harmon (Academic Director)
Rocky Bright
Randolf Dimalanta

Recent signatures


    1. Reached 3,000 signatures
    2. More instructors added!

      Vaughn Reynolds
      Petition Organizer

      We have more confirmed instructors! Here is the current list: (11/15)

      Advertising: Deborah Posner
      Fashion: Juanita Alcena, Emilia Valle
      Culinary: Eric Scholssberg
      General Education: Chris Checke (Psychology), Kristin Stover (Psychology)
      Graphic Design: Gary Ramey, Susana Lee
      Illustration: Tom De Vita, Cat Rocco
      Interior Design: Elizabeth Glenn
      Web: Steve Sherman

    3. Reached 250 signatures


    Reasons for signing

    • marla harris WEST SPRINGFIELD, MA
      • 9 months ago

      My name is Marla Victoria Harris. I am 29 years old and have been a resident of New York City for the past seven years. I am writing this letter to bring to your attention the shady business practices of The Art Institute of New York City. For a 2 year degree in fashion design, I am 150,000 dollars in debt, while EDMC profits are in the billions. My college credits are useless as they will not transfer to any other college and my degree has virtually no value in the job market..

      During my time at The Art Institutes I was encouraged by the financial aid officers to borrow “extra” money for living expenses. It was never explained that these loans were at interest rates of 15%. The federal government has initiated a lawsuit against EDMC for fraud but in the end this lawsuit will not help me out of this situation. I would be included in the Art Institutes deceptive 88% job placement statistics because I have a job in the industry. The job I have is not because of my degree or my education. My success is because the ten years I have spent in the intimate apparel industry. In a sense, I am the epitome of the American Dream. I started off as a sales associate at Fredericks of Hollywood in Massachusetts, now I am a buyer for a multimillion dollar lingerie company in New York City. I was hired a bra fitter and within 6 months was promoted to assistant buyer. Up until now, I have reached the goals I have set for myself, but the goals I once had for my thirties have been reduced to hopefully being able to sustain myself. I am so proud of what I have accomplished but terrified of my future. Unlike a mortgage or credit card, I cannot discharge my student loans in bankruptcy court. I thought this education would better my chances in the job market and ironically in the it end destroyed my life. I have every intention on continuing my education. I have my sights on graduate school for International Trade and Marketing, I will continue to work in my industry because I love what I do for a living. It has been difficult and will continue to be. I fell for the promise of a great job and future, for profit colleges are dangerous, they prey on young and determined. If something is not done soon, this will continue to destroy lives.

      Thank you for your time.


      Marla V. Harris

    • Jeff Ackley PORTLAND, OR
      • 9 months ago

      I graduated there in 2004 and loved Roni!! Plus I worked for Patricia for 3 years. During that time we had interns from her classes who would always says how inspiring she was. I believed them as I got to experience that first hand every day she was my boss. She is truly amazing and Industrial Design was lucky to have her!

    • Kelli Theiler MINNEAPOLIS, MN
      • 11 months ago

      I graduated from the Art Institutes in 2010 and although I obtained an amazing job after I left, I know so many students who have not, mainly because of the lack of education they received. AI and EDMC are charging an exorbitant amount for tuition, that paired with the fact that so many students never reach gainful employment, means that students are in debt for their entire life.

    • Christopher Coleman BIRMINGHAM, AL
      • 11 months ago

      I am a former student that was whisked through two different lenders after being told I had enough to pay for two years of school. I received robo calls the second year telling me that I didn't have enough money to attend class.

    • Alexandra Grenz PRIOR LAKE, MN
      • 12 months ago

      Because I went to AI MN, where we also had out teachers get the boot and its completely wrong, These schools suck, the only thing that makes them good are the teachers and people who go there.


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