Thursday, September 13, 2012

Reviews of Porter and Chester Institute


Porter and Chester Reviews was created for students and alumni of Porter and Chester Institute and does not earn commission from referring visitors to certain landing pages nor does it represent a perfect channel for interactive feedback. These  comments are honest, authentic experiences shared by fellow students and alumni.

This is not a Porter and Chester student bashing or T&A website. You need not be a master linguist or spelling champ to post here.


  1. If i could give this school 0 stars i would have. I have so much spite and anger towards this school i can barely write this review. From day one not one person here has told me the truth. I was lied to and told great things to get me here then lied right to my face on a daily basis. There is no structured(set) agenda or schedule of what you will be learning. Most days we sit in class and do nothing or are given 4 hours to do a 30 minute project. All that porter and chester cares about is getting your money. Once they have your signature on the paperwork then they kick you to the side and dont want to hear from you till your course is over. I cant stress enough that I am not the type of person who complains alot, or is annoyed easily.

    Im very disciplined and can tell you this school is a complete waste of my time and Money. Please please please I BEG YOU do your research before even thinking about attending Porter & Chester. Look up reviews and you will see what i am talking about. Ive never quit anything in life and coming here i almost quit multiple times. If i was to list everything wrong with this school it would take 500 pages and be a very interesting article. How this school has not been shut down is amazing! Obviously they are paying off the right people because it took me all of 2 weeks to figure out that this “for profit” school only cared about my money. DOnt be fooled by the hands on lies they tell you to get you to come here. We have done barely any hands on and

    Like i said just look up porter & chester reviews on google and you will be simply amazed and honestly you will probably laugh at the reviews. I dont know how but somehow i missed the reviews when i was looking into coming here and must have missed the reviews. I was dumb, PLEASe dont be dumb. It cost me 30,000 Dollars and i will be paying for this mistake for a long long time!

  2. Disgusted Parent

    Even giving this school one star in each category is a stretch. This school is a total scam and should be revealed for what they really are. Its quite obvious reading these reviews that the same complaints from different students and parents are mentioned over and over. I would advise anyone and everyone to stay clear of this school. You will be paying thousands of dollars for an education that you will either not get or never have a chance to get but your still going to have to pay off those loans. Sound fair?

    Do yourself a favor and go to a real school like so many stated in their complaints they ended up doing in the end. This so called “school” is a joke!!!!!! I cannot stress “joke” enough. I wish I had done a google search and found all these complaints before I let my son enroll there only to end up with $27,000 in loans and no certificate.

  3. At best you will receive a mediocre education, that is if only you can shut out all the extremely poor behavior by other students. the foul mouth swearing is chronic, the talking is loud and excessive, and the fights among female students, weekly. i feared for my safety on many occasion. it seemed like the instructors didn’t know how to control their class and it was a zoo. it was appalling. i read that the instructors get bonuses for keeping everybody in that they can, that is, as long as the school is receiving the funds from the students, so many students graduated that shouldn’t have – a major insult to those of us who really tried and cared. i can’t say that the instructors don’t care, i think they do if you show that you want to learn, the problem is the curriculum is poor and because of this, you will not receive a solid education. some teachers probably are teaching in up over their heads and then get beaten down by the crap that the majority of students dish out on a daily basis. they are probably afraid of the students and don’t want to cross their paths. awful.

    I realized too soon but then it was too late to quit, that i had made a major mistake by attending this school. i am now stuck with an enormous debt to pay off but fortunately found a job. i agree with all the other posts that p&c is a money mill and that the higher ups don’t care about the students, just their money. I will be paying off a loan for the next 25 years for a crummy education but will most likely go in to deeper debt to go back to college and get a real education. i signed the dotted line believing the bill of goods that wasn’t delivered.

    I am not proud that i graduated from p&c because anybody can as long as their money comes in. do yourself a favor and run, do not walk, away from attending this school. pay the extra money and go to college. you will be grateful that you did, and you will probably be much safer on a college campus. p&c is a danger zone.

    btw, we all can’t be wrong.

    What is the HOTNESS FACTOR and why would I rate something that I have no idea about?!?!?

  4. Pissed

    I graduated from this school in 2010 i found 1 job 2 months long after that i couldn’t find work, The job placement says well we don’t have anything for you today! b.s they don’t even try calling people or nothing they print out a list of people that might be hiring and leave your ass out in the wind f*ck them! and i have a higher GPA. former computer networking tech. grad.

  5. Mark says:

    I was planning to attend one of these “for profit” schools but apparently there is some shady stuff going on. Initially I signed up to Kaplan University in Somerville, Mass two weeks ago (September 2012) for the electrical course. Oddly, the entire school decided to shut down 4 days before classes started on October 3, 2012. I thought, “That’s highly unprofessional.” I have a two year legal degree from Bunker Hill Community College in Charlestown, Ma (500 ft from Kaplan) and Google-ed lawsuits against Kaplan. Surprisingly I found some interesting facts.

    Furthermore, I got quotes from the lawyer of Kaplan stating that “it may be odd to see a school operating like a business, but it is.” The class action suit painted Kaplan as targeting low income folks and using crude corporate sales tactics to sucker them into the school, and the Kaplan lawyers admitted this fact but stated that it is not illegal. The federal judge agreed with Kaplan and dismissed the suit in favor of Kaplan. Sad state of affairs in America but needless to say, I will not be attending one of these for profit schools until I Google everything about them. Some facts about Kaplan:

    -Owned by the Washington Post (Weird)
    -Many of the same site Porter Chester Complaints are filed, Kaplan is right there
    - (“Kaplan University is the blood bank for The Washington Post and supplies The Washington Post Corporation with 58 percent of its revenue.”)
    -”Kaplan’s answer to regulatory problems is to pay off politicians to weaken or rescind troublesome rules and regulations, thus reducing oversight, disclosure and transparency.”

    It appears that there is rampant fraud within the Accreditation process, Federal College money programs, banking (where the funds and interest rates originate) and downright criminal activity on a large scale basis. I have made my point. Train yourself through self discipline and the internet.

  6. Hi parent of two students graduated from watertown campus..what’s going on at this school??BS 101..both had 4.0s medical assisting and palmer the only one going out of his way to auto..huge loans no jobs as promised. Then the kids give up with my phone ringing off the wall for the $$ to b paid back..this is fraud don’t committ to borrowing federal funds from govt and false promises of jobs after they graduate..its getting hookups or connections in wtby..or ur not bilingual no JOBS period..terrible..this is fraud and deception. The school is pumping out the loans with an 80percent default status upon its grads..putting them in line for food stamps not to mention depression..what is the ratio of grads overall from these campuses getting reliable jobs after their internships?? These statistics need to b researched b4 any student borrows from any PC institute.. some one might consider a class action lawsuit for fraud!!!

  7. A Parent Says: July 16, 2011
    I am so disappointed in this school!!!! 26,0000 dollars later no job and no placement,,,Hello the career placement person was fired last !

    Rob Says: October 5, 2011
    This school is a joke no help from placement specialist at all, no homework at all, ant at one point they were teaching us addition and subtraction no lie.

  8. Miss. Take

    I myself was in their Medical Assistant program, and I agree with Just Disappointed. PCI is an education money mill. They are completely a rip-off and they really do not care what happens to their students once they are out of their classroom. I found for the amount of money that the students pay, the school was lacking. The equipment didn’t always work, the computers ugh…. they were a mess, the programs that we had to install on the computers were confusing and for people who have to do these programs with every batch of new students, they sure knew nothing about them. There was never enough equipment for every student to use and learn at the same time. And seriously… they expect to have people comfortable jabbing someone in the arm with a needle to draw blood only after 3 days of talking about it and practicing on a mutilated fake arm. The teachers, as people are nice, while you are in school, but once you’re out… you’re a nuisance. The rules to the school change every week and personally I don’t feel that we are taught what we really need in the field. MANY girls that have left PCI have not had any luck finding jobs or receiving the promised help of finding “GUARANTEED PLACEMENT\”. Many girls have had to get jobs doing whatever they can get because almost all of the places that are applied for say that “They need more years’ experience\”. The PROMISES that were given to us were not followed through at all, but were just ploys to get us in. We were told that once we left PCI, we would be certified in 3 things,PHLEBOTOMY, MEDICAL ASSISTING, and CPR. The CPR was the only true thing… even though that training class was definitely not long enough and was just rushed through. When girls started to ask questions about being certified in the other things, they played dumb… and said that they do not know why we were told that. But many girls were, and they just turned their heads. I don’t think that the instructors are really that educated in every topic. I personally will tell everyone and anyone I hear are going to check out PCI to go elsewhere. The school is a fraud and so are the people working there!!!! All they want is money… Shame on us for trusting them. I can go on forever about my horrible experiences at PCI but I won’t. I have made some great friends from going there but…. I just am disgusted on how I and others have been treated! NUFF SAID!!!

  9. Demos

    School is a complete fraud. They hire instructors that merely understand the courses. We went three 3 “instructors” in 13 months. This is mainly a self teach school. The faculty could really care less about you as an individual. They change the “standards” or “rules” on a weekly basis. 27k and this place isnt even worth it. People make false promises here and dont deliver. Would not suggest anyone to come here. Save your money do yourself a favor and goto a real college not a mediocre trade school.

  10. Gone Medical

    Porter and Chester sux! After 1 year, I still cannot find work. I am working as a waitress instead. I have called the school in Enfield Ct and never had any of my calls returned. False hope is right, once you are done… so are they. They should be reported to the Better Business Bureau. I am shocked that they have not been investigated yet. If somebody could afford a lawyer than I would def jump on and start a class action law suit!

  11. Some of the complaints are valid, others aren't. I go to the Stratford campus for hvac and my instructors are very experienced and offer great, real world advice. You only get out of this program what you put in. These schools teach you the basics, mostly due to the fact there is constantly evolving practices, equipment, and demands. If you come here, don't apply yourself, and need to be babysat like your still in high school, don't bitch when you don't get it at the end. Also, more likely then not, you will get an entry level position in your field because your only job like experience is this school, and that goes through technical schools or standard colleges. The price is steep and I can see maybe some other campuses or instructors don't have experience or are unprofessional, but these guys are fresh out of a service van 9/10 times, so this teaching isn't exactly there strong suit. If you bare with some of the instructor mishaps in the class, in the shop you will learn what you need to and apply yourself fully for the best results.

  12. I have mixed emotions, I’ll be graduating from the Watertown Campus in July – I have all my certs, 4.0 GPA, etc – and yeah, my instructors are pretty neat.

    However, it simply wasn’t remotely worth the money and other depressing things that came along with it all.

    In a nutshell I feel as if I paid 27,000$ for a narrator to the books/power points.

    I was shrouded into believing I was going to work with “top of the line technology” and all of our computers in our wing (Computers!) were probably the slowest/oldest in the school.

    A brand new desktop out of Walmart for 400$ would easily dominate any computer in our lab.
    Not cool, not cool.

    Their job placement was another trick they pulled me in with, but now after knowing the 3 previous graduating classes, I know that will not happen, regardless of my performance in class.

    Recap, you’ll be paying 27,000$ for a few books, maybe a flash drive to wow you, certification vouchers that total to about 6-700$.

    Honestly, I’d suggest reading up on the internet and taking the A+ test BEFORE enrolling, then you’ll see how you would’ve wasted your money.

    – Sincerely, Someone who doesn’t want the boot.

  13. I go to the Rocky Hill CT campus and I am in the LPN program. I just got back from clinical today and I can’t even compose myself. I have come home from clinical and class like this several times. The program was great until about one month in (thats when you can’t get back any of your money if you decide to drop out) that’s when the instructors started showing their true colors.

    We have one instructor who is extremely spiteful and the most unprofessional grown woman I have EVER met in my life. There was a delay earlier in the year but she told us that delays didn’t apply to us so, the entire class (except 3 people) showed up at 8:30am when we were informed by reception that class didn’t start until 10:30am due to the delay. So, 17 people sat in the classroom, angry about what we were told by the instructor. The instructor walks in around 10:00 and says something along the lines of:

    “What, do you think you are all wonder students and delays don’t apply to you?” Several people told her that she told us they didn’t. “I never said that. Do you guys shovel faster than everyone else that you can show up at 8:30? Well, I guess they shouldn’t have even called a delay since all of YOU were able to show up on time.”

    She was very rude, VERY sarcastic. I could see if 1 or 2 people showed up at 8:30, then it would be a misunderstanding. But, 97% of the class showed up thinking the SAME thing.

    We were also informed at the informational session that clinical started at 1 to 2 days a week and towards the end of the course we would be going 4 days a week. Class starts at 8:30am and clinical starts at 8am. We started clinical in November. We had one week where we went 2 days and that was for orientation at the facility. We have been going to clinical 4 days a week for 2 months but, we weren’t informed of this at start. We also just learned (through accidental means) that in our 3rd and 4th term clinical starts at 7:15am. We were then scolded because we were angry that we weren’t informed of this from the beginning. We have two people in class that come from Massachusetts to go to this campus, both of them have young children. The supervisor (who accidentally told us, and was surprised that we didn’t know) then asked “If you knew about this, would you have chosen a different school?” To which she heard many answers of “yes” or “maybe”. No one was angry just about the 7:15am start time, we were angry because we were NEVER told from the beginning.

    Also, if you are in clinical and it is your lunch hour, don’t go sit in your car. Apparently if you sit in your car the employees will think you are on drugs or drunk, according to the teacher’s thoughts. And then you will get your lunch hour cut down.

    These teachers are spiteful, rude, mean, and treat you like children even though EVERYONE is an adult. They are trying to teach professionalism but, they can’t even manage to demonstrate the proper way to act professional. They only pick on the negative things, they favor students who have former medical experience (CNA’s, MA’s).

    Bottom line, I completely, COMPLETELY regret going to this school and I will never recommend it to a loved one, or a complete stranger.

    If you want to get scammed out of your money, then go right ahead and apply to PCI but, my recommendation to you is, save that money and go somewhere WORTH IT.
    1.29/5 stars

  14. CHICOPEE, Mass. (WGGB) — Students at one local occupational school are upset tonight after they say they’re not getting the education for which they paid.

    Getting a state license to become an electrician in Massachusetts takes several years and thousands of hours of training. That’s why some people go to occupational schools – like Porter and Chester Institutes.

    But recently something those electrician students learned about PCI has them shocked.

    Tim Holcomb and Tom Minutillo are about 7 months into the year-long electrician program here at Porter and Chester in Chicopee, but even as they get closer to their graduation in October, they say they’re farther away than ever from getting the training they need.

    “We attend this school to obtain hours to become an electrician and Porter and Chester, even though we are paying $30,000 we’re only receiving half of our education,” said Holcomb.

    At issue is the way electricians are licensed in Massachusetts.

    The state mandates two things: 600 hours of classroom instruction and 8,000 hours of apprenticeship or on the job training or ‘OJT.’

    And while Porter and Chester has a state approved classroom program, it’s OJT is not approved.

    “The state says and Porter and Chester that the on the job training is no longer effect. Meaning that all we are working hard for will not include into our hours to become an electrician,” explained Holcomb.

    “From my understanding, they were contacted by the state back in February that there was a problem. They’ve done nothing,” said Minutillo.

    While no one from Porter and Chester would go on camera, they did send this statement, saying in part: “Until recently, PCI understood students could apply part of their practical shop experience toward the 8,000 hours of on-the-job training required for state licensure.”

    In fact, the PCI student catalogue that we pulled up on-line says “Part of the training hours you acquire at Porter and Chester qualify as OJT.”

    But clearly, that’s not the case.

    “We want to get to the bottom of this,” said Barbara Anthony, Mass. Undersecretary of Consumer Affairs. “If there’s an intentional misrepresentation – that will be dealt with accordingly but the point I want to make is we are looking into the matter. We take an allegation of misrepresentation very seriously.”

    PCI maintains it immediately informed students of the problem, but for many who’ve already spent upwards of $30,000 on tuition, they say it’s too little too late.

    “If you were here every day for every hour it should have been 684 apprenticeship hours credited to us,” said Minutillo. “Now we get nothing for our money.”

    Once more, to be clear, the state does recognize Porter and Chester’s electrician program and will recognize the 600 hours of classroom time, but the state is currently in the process of clarifying whether on-the-job training hours are counted towards a student’s eligibility to take the licensing exam.

    And Anthony says it will take a few more weeks to figure it all out.

  15. Horrible lack of communication. terrible school. Wish someone had warned me prior to starting. Paying for tools and uniforms that i never even got. Buncha thieves in the auto class in Watertown. Absolute nightmare. Haha even better is when they continue to withdraw money from an account that they were told not to. And when you ask to speak to the campus director and never get a call back. Lawsuits are a b****.

  16. Vanessa says :

    There are so many public school programs that it always amazes me that these types of schools can stay in business. In the United States, we have a very good community college system that often offers similar programs to the so-called “technical schools.” Take Auto Mechanics programs, for example. There is a community college in Sacramento, California (American River College, specifically), that offers a full mechanic certification program. This costs under $ 1,000 in tuition per semester, and most students qualify for government-subsidized financial aid, which means the tuition is not only free, but you also RECEIVE money to help with living expenses and books. It is absolutely astonishing to me that the for-profit, private school down the street can charge upwards of $ 10,000 per year with no financial assistance for the same exact program They are really preying on people who are desperate to improve their lives, but who are also uninformed enough to fall for pushy sales tactics. These schools spend your hard-earned tuition money on advertising and recruiting new students. It sounds to me like this school you are talking about is one of these.

    My advice to everyone…if you’re in the United States, check your community colleges first Chances are you can find one in your state that offers computer technology, engineering, paralegal, auto mechanic, cosmetology…all of the things that these expensive “career colleges” specialize in.

    1. Porter and Chester Institute - Waste of Time and Money

      I am currently enrolled in college now. I have been since shortly after leaving PCI.

      I was recently looking over all of my student loans which brought me to think back at my dreadful experience at Porter and Chester. It makes me beyond depressed thinking about how I have an extra $20k or so in debt due to attending this school that got me nowhere. They lied through their teeth so they could fill empty seats. They are predators and you are the prey.

      I felt like I was just a number the entire time I was there. My instructor, when he did teach, merely read word for word from a Powerpoint. A powerpoint which was word for word from the book. We seldom did "hands on" work.

      Hands on was what was advertised to me and promised. I was in the Computer and Networking program. I learned more from Youtube videos and guides online than I did from attending the school. The instructor came in late everyday.

      Class was supposed to begin at 7:30, however in reality it began consistently around approximately 9am. Even then he didn't always start at that time. He was also the schools IT guy so he would often be off doing something else and leave us with a quick and easy assignment and not come back for much longer than it took the class to complete whatever it was. We were allotted a break which always ended up being an hour or more.

      I would approximate that on any given day we actually only had maybe 2 hours of actual class time as opposed the 5 that should have occurred. As far as I could tell the instructor gave everyone A's. In all reality though I don't think grades at this schooled mattered at all. I earned my certifications with practically no help from any of the class time I was there.

      I taught myself via the books and the internet. I scored very well by doing the work myself. So I literally paid for absolutely nothing, except I guess the books. I would do anything to get my money back.

      I found this site in my searches to see of others complaints and to see if there was any kind of class action lawsuit against the school from other frustrated past students.

      I know at the time of my attendance one of the other students in my program was suing the school.

  17. Started a few weeks ago. Brought their failing programs in compliance only to be told without any explanation we no longer want to carry on with your employment because you are not living our mission.

    If their mission is pass through un educated graduates then their right I don't want to be a part of their team! Try enrolling people who can speak and spell English!!! Oh and try and complete graduate files too. Ask them for student evaluations or readings they don't have them.

    They have not meet accreditation standards in three years!!What does that tell you!!!

  18. I was also planning to help my son to pay for this school (electrical program). We just went there and the cost is 27,000 from which 23,000 is out of the pocket expenses. (students loans). I am so glad I read this review.

  19. PCI Attendance Policy

    The attendance policy there is absolutely ridiculous. If you are even one minute late they deduct the first half hour.

    They take a half hour away from you for being 1 minute late. If you miss 2 days, let's say for being sick and you can not prove you were sick, then you get a letter stating that you could be kicked out of Porter & Chester. A majority of the time when you re-appeal, it is denied and they kick you out anyway, this school is over priced, they give you *** equipment that breaks and you can not even hear out of, for 21,000 I'd say the students deserve a little break , especially ones with kids.

    I can not wait to graduate so that I can tell everyone I know not to go to Porter and Chester, the only good experience I had here was meeting incredible people and my instructor. That's the only thing that made it worth it.

  20. After spending $28,000 at porter and Chester on graduation day after diplomas we all had stale cookies and watered down coffee to celebrate. Should of had a sit down dinner but there cheap. Always about money.