Cardinal Stritch University Closing After 86 Years
“I wish there was a different path we could pursue”
Lower enrollment and the effects of the pandemic strike again.
CBS News reports:
Stritch University in Wisconsin is closing after 86 years
Cardinal Stritch University, a Catholic liberal arts college, is closing, a year after celebrating its 85th anniversary.
“I wish there was a different path we could pursue,” President Dan Scholz said in a video Monday. “However, the fiscal realities, downward enrollment trends, the pandemic, the need for more resources and the mounting operational and facility challenges presented a no-win situation.”
The university was known as St. Clare College when it was started in Milwaukee in 1937 by the Sisters of St. Francis of Assisi. It was renamed for Cardinal Samuel Stritch in 1946 and later relocated to northern Milwaukee County.
University trustees recommended closure to the Sisters, and they accepted it, Scholz said.
Enrollment had dropped to 1,400 in 2021 compared to 2,400 in 2018, according to federal data cited by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. There are more than 40,000 alumni.
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I taught for about 20 years at a small Roman Catholic liberal arts college. It was a precious place, always on the verge of going broke, but a close-knit community of faith and learning. I left for a more lucrative gig at a public college so I could better support my family, with a few children on the verge of college. But I loved that place and still admire it.
But these are exactly the schools that are going down first. The number of College-aged students is declining, and the population’s faith in college education is fading. We have a lot of colleges and universities in this country who are competing for a smaller number of potential students. The first to fall out will be small privates like this one, and then the problem will spread to small public colleges (it’s already started).
Higher ed needs some soul searching.
When a small college fails, my first curiosity is to know their relationship with woke nonsense. Were they all-in, minimally participating, neutral and unaligned, or privately or publicly resisting? If they were participating, failure is what I would fully expect, and failure of the small fry first would be eminently reasonable. If they were non-participants, then it seems to be evidence that the woke cataclysm is taking down the uninvolved first, also a conceivable possibility, but not good news at all.
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