The culprits were – do I need to write them again? Enrollment and unsustainable debt: “Dowling saw enrollment plunge from 6,379 students in 2005 to 2,453 by the fall of 2014 as it struggled to repay $54 million in debt…”
Once again, we read of a human toll: “2,400 graduate and undergraduate students… About 400 professors, administrators and other staffers were laid off…”
Dowling’s leadership is still fighting, angling for a deal that could save them. It’s an unusual one, involving another country and a different educational sector, according to Newsday:
Michael Puorro, chairman of the college’s board, told Newsday that trustees still are in “serious talks” with United Kingdom-based Global University Systems, an international network of postsecondary institutions.
If a deal is reached, he said, Dowling would not close and the firm would make a significant financial investment and supply students to the school.
Who is GUS? According to their site,
an international network of higher-education institutions, brought together by a shared passion for accessible, industry-relevant qualifications. GUS delivers a wide variety of programmes, including bachelor’s degree programmes, master’s degree programmes, professional training, English Language training, and corporate & executive education.
According to Wikipedia, GUS “owns and operates several private for-profit colleges and universities in the UK, Canada, and Europe as well as other brands and companies in the education sector such as the e-learning platform InterActive.”
This is a board action. Newsweek says the president is still shutting things down, but the Dowling website has hopes for GUS:
One more important detail concerns Dowling hunting for a merger or other savior:
“As painful as this announcement is we want the student body, faculty and alumni to know that we made every effort to form a suitable academic affiliation so that we could keep the college open,” said Albert Inserra, the seventh Dowling president in 12 years…
How many such efforts are now underway across America, behind closed doors?
(thanks to Lee Skallerup Bessette)