Under financial pressure, Damascus Monor College will join Boston College

The College of Monroe in Damascus will “fund an educational partnership” with Boston College by raising funds at a breaking point after the epidemic ends.

A memorandum of understanding between the two schools allowed Boston College to occupy all of Pine Mono’s property, including the leafy, 45-acre campus on Chinnaut Hill. Boston College will also pay for Pine Mono’s operating expenses for “teaching” students for up to two years.

This is the first such unification since Massachusetts and colleges around the world were hit by the financial crisis.

At the same time, the two institutions will work together to establish the Student Success Pine Monor Institute, which will provide support and academic support to first-generation and low-income students at Boston College. – Damn Monroe has served that initial demographic for over a decade. It will do so through a $ 50 million grant from Boston College.

Pine Mono President Tom O’Reilly described the deal as a “golden opportunity at an incredible time”. He argued that the agreement extended Pine’s “student success” model indefinitely: it linked it to widespread support and assistance to underprivileged students.

During this two-year course, current Pine Monor students will be able to continue their studies at the existing faculty. They will be offered the option to apply to study from Boston College Evening School, Woods Development Research College.

O’Reilly speculated that the current Pine Manor faculty and its co-workers could find work at Boston College many years later, but said it was all “within reach.”

Under the agreement, employees who do not participate in the uninterrupted activities of Damascus Manor College while studying will be assisted in finding jobs and other responsibilities.

The city of Damascus Monroe – complete with a historic castle and living quarters – is one and a half miles from the center of Chestnut Hill before Christmas.

The two schools are also historic promises to nurture disadvantaged student communities, but the student bodies are not identical. Color students and international students accounted for 93% of admissions to Pine Manor at the end of 2018 (latest data available), while only 42% of admissions to Boston College came from the same community.

In early March, the New England Commission of Higher Education, the region’s top regional recognition provider for colleges and universities, warned Pine Monor College that its recognition would be threatened if the college’s financial situation deteriorated.

The note came as it became clear how the coronavirus epidemic would hit among the main sources of college income.

Barbara Britham, the current chair of the commission, praised O’Reilly and his team for trying to diversify college income in recent years as they work to complete this concluding work. The college sets up a child care program on campus and rents the campus for weddings.

“Everything was great before it happened,” Britham said, adding that summer ceremonies, outdoor weddings and autumn recordings would affect the epidemic.

For years, experts have warned that America’s small school market, especially in New England, is under pressure. In the wake of the epidemic, Brittingham said it would not be “surprising” if the news of the “Damascus Manor” was the first of many higher education combinations and acquisitions.

Compared to Ida College, which abruptly closed in 2018, Brightham has praised Pine Monor for sweetening its deadly financial problems.

“I did a very good job of making the situation transparent (unusual) – until I advised the students to create a Plan B,” he said.

O’Reilly said the deal with Boston College would still require “appropriate regulatory approval” from the NECHE, as well as the state’s Department of Higher Education. He said he hoped the agreement would provide a “level of confidence” for students and staff at an indefinite time.

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