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MacMurray College in Illinois Closing at the End of May

MacMurray College in Illinois Closing at the End of May

“no viable financial path forward amid declining enrollments”

This closure was not prompted by the Coronavirus crisis. The school has apparently been struggling for a few years.

Here’s part of an email that was sent out by the school president:

Dear Alumni,

I write today to share very sad news: The Board of Trustees of MacMurray College has voted unanimously to close the college at the end of the semester in May.

Although your recent gifts helped significantly with cash flow, the Board ultimately determined that your alma mater had no viable financial path forward amid declining enrollments, rising competitive costs, and an insufficient endowment.

The Board spent more than a year exploring financial scenarios and potential new sources for capital. A new strategic plan was developed to broaden MacMurray’s professional degree programs and reach more non-traditional students, but the significant amount of capital required to fund it could not be secured.

Although the current pandemic and the resulting economic disruption further complicated MacMurray’s financial condition, they were not the principal reasons for the Board’s decision to close.

Together with my team, we are working to ensure seamless transitions for our 527 students to one of seven nearby colleges and universities this fall.


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At the current rate of failures, America will run out of colleges by A.D. 2820 or so.

I wonder which will be the last one standing?

SeekingRationalThought | March 28, 2020 at 2:24 pm

I grew up near MacMurray College. While the virus may have had an effect, they have been having difficulties for a number of years if not decades. At some point in the past, probably during the process of going co-ed, they spent their way through what I’ve always been told was a fairly decent endowment. Not that they were a wealthy school, just that they didn’t save for a rainy day. Their closing is sad for their students and alumni as well as the community. They probably won’t be the last college or university to close

nordic_prince | March 28, 2020 at 10:46 pm

My brother graduated from MacMurray ages ago. A couple of years ago I was having a conversation with him and he mentioned in passing he wasn’t about to contribute as an alumnus. He didn’t go into detail but the definite impression was that he was less than impressed with the direction the college was heading.