PITTSBURGH (AP) _ A Pittsburgh-based for-profit college company has announced plans to close 15 of its Art Institute campuses nationwide, one quarter of the total, over the next two or three years.

Education Management Corp. said Wednesday that the schools _ including one in York, Pennsylvania _ would no longer accept new enrollments. The 5,432 currents students will be allowed to complete coursework toward a degree.

Chief executive officer Edward West called the decision “difficult” but said the company would be better positioned to provide the education value students expect and deserve.

Spokesman Chris Hardman said about 1,200 employees would either lose their jobs or find positions at other company schools. Officials haven’t said whether other closures or layoffs were possible among the other 36 Art Institutes and 57 other Education Management schools.