This article by Jim Therrien originally appeared March 4 in the Bennington Banner.
BENNINGTON — The Southern Vermont College trustees have determined there is “no way forward” for the college because of enrollment decline and related debt issues; they plan to close the institution at the conclusion of the spring semester.
The stunning decision came one day after a show-cause hearing on Thursday before the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE) to determine whether SVC should be placed on probation for failing to meet the financial resources standard for continued accreditation.
College officials are holding a series of meetings today to announce the closure and explain the details to students, faculty and staff members.
“On Friday morning,” said President David R. Evans, “the board voted to close the college at the end of the spring semester, concluding that, given all the factors including the fact that we ceased recruiting new students almost immediately after receiving notice of the show-cause hearing, and right in the middle of the prime recruiting season, suggested that there was no plausible way we could continue our trajectory of increasing numbers of new incoming students, and as such would face an impossible fiscal situation next year.”
Evans said he also was informed by NECHE that the commission voted following the hearing to withdraw the college’s accreditation and indicated that the accreditation could remain in effect through Aug. 31.
Read full article at the Bennington Banner.
(Fair use with written permission from the New England Newspapers Inc.)