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S.c. House Budget Panel Votes To Close Hbcu Sc State University For Two Years

gimbap

Well-Known Member
I'm shocked. I knew the school was having financial problems, but I didn't even realize this was a possibility.


http://www.thestate.com/2015/02/10/3980563_house-panel-votes-to-close-sc.html?rh=1

House panel votes to close SC State for two years

Posted by ANDREW SHAIN on February 10, 2015 Updated 5 minutes ago









COLUMBIA — A S.C. House budget panel voted Tuesday to close S.C. State University for two years to help the school ends it financial troubles.
The state’s only historically black public college has a $10 million deficit from unpaid bills to food and maintenance vendors. S.C. State’s enrollment has dropped sharply in recent years and just 14 percent of students graduate within four years.


The vote by the House panel that oversees funding for state colleges is the culmination of frustration over S.C. State’s finances, said Rep. Jim Merrill, a Berkeley Republican who heads the panel.


The plan, which still needs approval from the full House and Senate, would close S.C. State for the 2015-16 and 2016-17 school years. Students could get scholarships to attend other state public colleges or other historically black schools if the keep a 2.5 grade-point average.


The state would fire the school administration, board of trustees, faculty and staff under the proposal.



Other employees at the Orangeburg school would have to reapply for their jobs when the school re-opens, said Rep. Phillip Lowe, a Florence Republican on the panel.


The state would need to work out terms to repay $7.5 million in loans it has given to S.C. State as well as an estimated $100 million in bonds that the school holds. The state would assume responsibility for the S.C. State’s debt.


The proposal also would suspend the Bulldogs’ athletics programs.


The school would close on July 1.



A panel of current and former state college presidents would develop a plan to re-open the school by Jan. 1, 2017, and S.C. State would hold classes again in fall 2017.


Budget panel members said S.C. State President Thomas Elzey has not done enough to turn around the school’s financial fortunes since arriving in 2013. The problems pre-date Elzey when school leaders borrowed money to cover deficits.



Panel members said they were not pleased that part of Elzey’s budget request for next year included $6 million to pay back an earlier state loan.
Elzey drove to Columbia to speak with lawmakers Tuesday after hearing about the vote.


The school’s accreditation remains on probation because of financial and accounting issues.



S.C. State would lose is accreditation if it closes for a year, said Belle Wheelan, president of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges. Students cannot receive financial aid at unaccredited schools.


Getting accreditation at the new S.C. State would take at least two years, Wheelan said.
 

TCatt86

Well-Known Member
Wow, this is pretty bad
And to top it off only 14% of students graduate in 4 years?
That's actually not alarming. I'm assuming this is a commuter school with a student population that consists of mostly working young adults and adults. It's almost impossible to finish school in 4 yrs and work. This will be happening to some HBCUs in Louisiana soon.
 

TayMac

Well-Known Member
I know several people that went there. We used to go the their homecoming years ago. Sad to hear that
 

JustSitNBePretty

Well-Known Member
That's actually not alarming. I'm assuming this is a commuter school with a student population that consists of mostly working young adults and adults. It's almost impossible to finish school in 4 yrs and work. This will be happening to some HBCUs in Louisiana soon.
It's not a commuter school. It has a very active residential student community.

This makes me so sad to hear.
 

TayMac

Well-Known Member
That's actually not alarming. I'm assuming this is a commuter school with a student population that consists of mostly working young adults and adults. It's almost impossible to finish school in 4 yrs and work. This will be happening to some HBCUs in Louisiana soon.
More than half students live on campus. It is pretty rundown.
 

JustSitNBePretty

Well-Known Member
It's been going further down hill every year. They accept students who aren't college ready and it shows.
They do accept many students who probably should attend community college first, but that isn't what has put the school in the financial situation it is in. Greed has, as many people who were put in positions to help SCSU ended up stealing from the school. Both my parents are SCSU alums and this hurts. It's all over for my Facebook feed.
 

Mad Scientist

Well-Known Member
I don't get what shutting down for two years would do for their money problems. I understand it's two years with fewer expenses, but...it's also two years without revenue.

What are the students who are on track to graduate supposed to do? I think it would be hard to find another school that would accept ALL their credits and they'd most likely end up set back at least a little depending on where they transfer to and at what point in their studies. Not to mention, most of the students probably have student loan debt already. Also, if they shut down for just two years, how do they plan to re-open? Who would be applying to go to school or work there? I know I wouldn't even be trying to apply to a school that just completely shut down for two years. It would just be terrible for their reputation.
 

gimbap

Well-Known Member
Also, if they shut down for just two years, how do they plan to re-open? Who would be applying to go to school or work there? I know I wouldn't even be trying to apply to a school that just completely shut down for two years. It would just be terrible for their reputation.
This is why I don't understand how this is supposed to work. The school closes, they lose accreditation, it takes 2 years to get it back, and students can't receive federal financial aid if the school is unaccredited. No one is going to return. If they're going to close it temporarily, they might as well shut it down for good because it won't recover
 

betteron2day

Well-Known Member
I'm surprised Grambling is still operating. It won't be long if Jindal has his way. Almost every school other than LSU will close in LA.
 

HappilyLiberal

Well-Known Member
This is why I don't understand how this is supposed to work. The school closes, they lose accreditation, it takes 2 years to get it back, and students can't receive federal financial aid if the school is unaccredited. No one is going to return. If they're going to close it temporarily, they might as well shut it down for good because it won't recover

This^^^ is my best guess as to what they are attempting to do. All hell would break loose if they said they were closing the school. So, they are coming up with this temporary BS. They know this is a permanent closure!
 

1QTPie

Elder Sim
They may as well close for good. Two years is not enough time.


HBCUs stay having financial issues. Where was the money for bills going?
 

ladysaraii

Well-Known Member
I talked to my dad about this and he's doubtful that it will actually close. He says he thinks it's someone posturing for something. In his viewpoint, it doens't make sense to close the school so you can replace the admin, trustees, president, etc.. Just replace them and bring in new people. but closing and then thinking you will be up and running in two years, no.

Not to mention, they would have to figure out something to do with the students and closing for the FY15 school year is too soon. besides, just b/c the plan is to give the students scholarships to other schools is problematic. There is no guarantee that the students can be accepted (due to ability or just room), all the credits won't transfer, etc.

He doesn't see this passing.

I hope he's right. I think that schools like SC State serve a purpose, esp when it comes to a population that might not be ready for or able to get accepted to another school. If it was properly run and managed, it would be an excellent way to get those students and turn them around/help them get up to that next level. But if it's seen as a joke, then it becomes ripe ground for some of the fraudulent crap that's been happening.
 

Jewell

New Member
SMH, I was just reading this headline on the front page of "The State" (SC newspaper) this morning. I dont know what will happen, but I know many alumni and it certainly is a sad situation.
 

DeepBluSea

Well-Known Member
They closed Morris Brown a few years ago. No one thought that would happen. It sucks for the students there it cheapens their degrees.

The president of this University was on Tom Joyner this morning. He says they are going to fight it. Doesn't sound good. They are in a lot of debt.
 

Neomorph

Well-Known Member
Wow...

Here in North Carolina they tried to close Elizabeth City State University not too long ago for budget reasons. Luckily the measure to shut ECSU did NOT go through. :D

I didn't realize this was such a problem for HBCUs. But I guess it comes with not being as well known as Spelman, Morehouse, Howard, Hampton and even lesser known ones like NC A&T and NCCU (which are very popular choices here in NC...many of my high school classmates attend these two beautiful schools).
 

Holla

Well-Known Member
I am not surprised. HBCUs weren't created to be academic succes stories. They were created for Black kids to go to school because they weren't allowed in White institutions. Separate and very unequal.

At this point though, I blame everyone. The parents who send their kids to a school with such a low graduation rate. The school for probably admitting anyone who applies while duping them out of money every year. The government for allowing the rate to fall to 14% before stepping in (and even then they are stepping in primarily bc of the debt not the graduation rate). The community - I'm sure there are plenty of organizations (like my church that has a HBCU College Fair every year) that push kids to attend a HBCU - any HBCU! - without emphasizing the need for these institutions to maintain a standard of academic rigor.


The President and staff need to be replaced. They allowed that standard to thrive. Just because a school has debt doesn't mean the school should have such a low graduation rate. It is shocking and disturbing to have a four-year 14% graduation rate.
 

Holla

Well-Known Member
Wow...

Here in North Carolina they tried to close Elizabeth City State University not too long ago for budget reasons. Luckily the measure to shut ECSU did NOT go through. :D

I didn't realize this was such a problem for HBCUs. But I guess it comes with not being as well known as Spelman, Morehouse, Howard, Hampton and even lesser known ones like NC A&T and NCCU (which are very popular choices here in NC...many of my high school classmates attend these two beautiful schools).
Howard had issues a few years ago with their debt. Mainly because of their hospital (which was a big drain on the school financially). It was a big deal. A lot of schools have issues that are not discussed on a national level.
 

gimbap

Well-Known Member
NC A&T is actually the largest HBCU in the nation, with 10,000+ students, and I think NCCU is up there as well. I would def. put A&T in the well-known category

I didn't realize SC State's enrollment had decreased so dramatically. I honestly don't see this ending well, but we'll see
 

Kimbosheart

Well-Known Member
2 different sources say FAMU is the largest by enrollment for 2014.

I'm a rattler I couldn't let that slide. Sorry
 
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