College of Saint Rose formally announces closure, blames enrollment woes, finances
College of Saint Rose officials formally delivered the news that the college would close after the spring semester, saying they did not have the financial resources to sustain the institution.
NewsChannel 13 was first to report Thursday that the Board of Trustees voted Thursday to shut the school as it was facing a deep financial crisis. They held a half-hour community meeting on Friday.
“It is with a heavy heart that the Board decided to close the college at the end of this academic year,” said Board of Trustees Chairman Jeffrey Stone in a statement sent out after the meeting. “The Board determined that the College does not have the financial resources to operate for the full 2024-2025 academic year and therefore cannot remain a standalone institution.”
Stone attributed the closure to a struggle to manage operating expenses in the face of declining enrollment caused by a shrinking pool of high school graduates and the prolonged negative effect of COVID-19, said Stone.
“We are devastated that despite all our efforts we were unable to avoid closure,” Stone said. “Our goal now is to ease the transition for our students, faculty, and staff.”
College officials said they will assist students to graduate in May or continue their studies elsewhere and outline a clear pathway for them to earn their degrees. The transition will be guided by a formal closure plan. The college’s Human Resources department will be available to help faculty, administrators and staff with their career transition.
President Marcia White said they are heartbroken to deliver the news of the closure of the 103-year-old college.
“We are heartbroken to have to share this devastating news with the students and our community,” she said in a statement. “The Trustees and I are profoundly grateful to the College’s faculty and staff who have remained committed to Saint Rose and have dedicated their lives to fulfilling its mission.”
College officials said that in the last few years, they have eliminated high-cost academic programs, laid off administrators, staff and faculty. They also reduced pension contributions, refinanced debt, requested donors to unrestrict endowed funds, sold buildings, raised scholarship funds and other strategies.
However, the college still had a $11.3 million deficit. And could not overcome that.
“For more than a century, Saint Rose has transformed the lives of countless students, and our students continue to be our highest priority,” said White. “We understand the profound impact this announcement will have on them and their families, as well as our faculty, staff and community members in the City of Albany, the greater Capital Region, and beyond.”
NewsChannel 13 is at the campus and will you updates on this story online and on our newscasts beginning Live at 4.