According to an Associated Press article by Justin Pope, the economic crisis has played a major role in the closings of several Christian colleges:
Late last month, [Cascade College,] the small Christian college with just 280 students and $4 million in debt announced it would have to shut down at the end of the current academic year.
“Our hearts would have said we would like to continue trying,” said Cascade President Bill Goad, somberly adding he never imagined his duties would include shutting the school down. But on top of their long-term challenges, “small colleges like Cascade just don’t have the slack to survive those kinds of impacts,” he said.
In addition to Cascade, another Christian institution, Taylor University, announced last month it would close the undergraduate program at a branch campus in Fort Wayne, Ind., while Pillsbury Baptist Bible College in Owatonna, Minn. announced plans to close.
And on Wednesday, Vennard College, a Christian school in Iowa that was down to about 80 students, announced it would close at the end of the current semester — two years shy of its 100th birthday.
If more college closing announcements come, it would likely be next semester, or next fall, when schools find out how many of their students don’t return.
There are about 4,400 colleges in the United States, and the American Council on Education has records show that only four closed in 2007.
I’ll admit I’m surprised to see that the small Christian schools are shutting down. They may have only a handful of students, but I was always under the impression that those kinds of schools were funded by a number of wealthy Christians who could protect the schools from exactly these problems.
It may be a good thing to have these students relocate. Not all of them will go to another Christian college, and I think it’ll be good for the others to have to adjust to living/working/studying in “normal society.”
College is the perfect time to expand your mind and challenge your own views. You can’t do that if you’re constantly surrounded by people who agree with you.
(Thanks to tokenadult for the link!)