by Stephanie Samsel
Over 40% of the colleges that have closed or consolidated since the start of the pandemic are Christian colleges, according to a report
Christian college closures noted in Higher Ed Dive’s public and private nonprofit college tracker include Cabrini University in Pennsylvania and Alliance University (AU) in New York, which will close Aug. 31.
In June, the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE), which performs accreditation of private and public universities in the United States, pulled AU’s accreditation after the campus failed to meet financial sufficiency.
In a statement to Campus Reform, AU President Rajan Mathews wrote that the campus’s diverse communities “remain mystified” at the MSCHE’s action.
“We firmly believe it was totally unwarranted as we had submitted credible evidence to show financial sufficiency for the upcoming academic year and years forward,” Mathews said. “The institution has been in existence for almost 141 years and as a Christian institution catering to the needs of immigrants, minorities and economically disadvantaged, raises substantial amounts of money from donors which are awarded as scholarships to needy students.”
Similarly, Campus Reform recently reported that New York City’s only other option for students seeking an evangelical education also had its accreditation withdrawn. The King’s College will not be offering classes this fall.
It is not just the East Coast losing Christian colleges.
In California, Holy Names University (HNU) closed in May 2023, after facing economic challenges and a steep decline in enrollment. A total of 943 students were enrolled at HNU in the fall of 2022, but only 449 students registered in the final spring 2023 semester, HNU’s Dec. 19 press release reports.
The COVID-19 pandemic seems to have compounded the trend of declining enrollment.
According to the National Student Clearinghouse’s fall 2020 estimates, enrollment in two-year colleges dropped by 21% or over 207,2000 students, a rate nearly 20 times higher than the decline pre-pandemic.
As colleges struggle to meet operational cost, Campus Reform has reported that other universities are choosing to invest in gender-affirming- and diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) resources, such as transgender student emergency funds.
This comes as most Americans share a dwindling faith in higher education.
According to a Wall Street Journal/NORC poll this year, 56% of adults said a four-year college was “not worth the cost.”
Campus Reform reached out to all parties mentioned for comment and will update this story accordingly.
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Stephanie Samsel is a junior at Towson University. She is passionate about shedding light on liberal biases in higher education that are antithetical to tenets of American democracy. As a mass communication major pursuing a journalism track and studying political science, Stephanie wants to work as a journalist and a political commentator. She is an active member of her university’s College Republicans chapter and Honors College Marketing Committee, as well as a College Fix contributor and CNSNews intern for the summer class of 2022.