CLINTON, Iowa (AP) - Ashford University has announced that it will close its Clinton campus next year, surprising several leaders in the community who say they’re sad to see it go.
Chairman Gregory Geoffroy of the school’s board of directors said in a Thursday statement that the campus hasn’t been able to resolve an ongoing enrollment shortfall, the Quad-City Times (https://bit.ly/1LZPL8u ) reported. The school’s online education center will continue and won’t be affected by the closure.
“This decision was thoughtfully and carefully considered, and we are deeply saddened to close a campus that is so rich in history and committed to providing its students with a quality academic experience,” Geoffroy said.
Keeping the school open until the end of the 2016 spring semester will allow students who are on track to complete their degrees the chance to attend their May 2016 commencement.
The school will work with other students on their options, either transitioning to another school or to online courses. Around 60 percent of campus students are pursuing a degree program that’s available online at Ashford.
The university was one of Clinton’s larger employers. Clinton Alderwoman Julie Allesee said she believes the departure of the university will have an impact on the city’s economy.
President and CEO Nathan Sondgeroth of the Clinton Area Chamber of Commerce said that he’s saddened over the university’s plans to shutter the campus.
“You hate to lose any employer, you hate to lose any business, but now that we know what is happening we can rally together as a community and see what’s next,” Sondgeroth said.
The good news, Sondgeroth said, “is that we have a year to figure it out and make some good strategic choices. That and the fact that Ashford will continue to invest in its online courses here in Clinton.”
Information from: Quad-City Times, https://www.qctimes.com
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