“financial challenges have only been exacerbated by the pandemic.”
In a scenario that has become familiar, the school was already struggling but the pandemic pushed it over the edge.
N.J. college says it may shut down if it doesn’t get financial help
One of New Jersey’s oldest and most historic private colleges took the highly unusual step Tuesday of admitting it is in financial trouble and it may close unless it finds someone to get the school out of the red.
Officials at Bloomfield College, a four-year college in Essex County, say this may be its last year without a financial overhaul or a partnership with another college. In a frank plea for help, they asked potential donors or partners to contact them.
“The Board of Trustees and Bloomfield College’s administration are exploring all options to support our students and remain open in order to continue the college’s core mission. We seek institutions or philanthropists that share the values around our mission and will see us as a valuable partner,” said Vernon Endo, chairman of the Bloomfield College Board of Trustees.
Bloomfield College has enough money to complete the 2021-2022 school year, but it is uncertain if it can reopen next fall, officials said.
Enrollment has been falling over the last decade and the coronavirus pandemic has further strained campus finances, school officials said. The college, which enrolled 1,533 students last year, primarily serves low-income, minority and first-generation college students.
Marcheta Evans, the college’s president, outlined the school’s money problems and enrollment declines in a town hall meeting for students and staff earlier this week.
“The resulting financial challenges have only been exacerbated by the pandemic. And, Bloomfield is not alone. Many small private liberal arts colleges in the Northeast and across the country face similar challenges,” Evans said in a letter to the campus posted on the school’s website.
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