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USA News

US Catholic university to close after 100 years

by Lydia Davies

Notre Dame College, a Catholic university in Ohio, US has announced it will be closing after more than a century of operation, prompting students to transition to other educational institutions. 

Notre Dame College Interim President John Smetanka announced that in-person teaching will end at the completion of the Spring 2024 term. 

Smetanka expressed sadness at the necessity of the closure but assured a smooth transition for students.  

He said: “We are all saddened by the need to make this decision. 

“Rest assured that as we move forward, we are doing everything we can to ensure a smooth transition for our students to continue their education”. 

The college attributed the closure to “long-standing challenges related to declining enrolment, a shrinking pool of college-aged students, rising costs and significant debt.” 

The school’s Board of Trustees reported that “heroic efforts” to keep the college open failed to “close the financial gap in time to satisfy debt obligations and allow the school to continue to operate independently”. 

Terri Bradford Eason, the chair of Notre Dame College’s Board of Trustees told The Christian Post: “Our primary focus has been to ensure our students can successfully continue their education, graduate, and - in the tradition of the Sisters of Notre Dame -live a life of personal, professional and global responsibility.” 

The college has forged partnerships with nine colleges and universities in Ohio and Pennsylvania to facilitate seamless transfers for current students. 

“Current students...with at least 60 completed credits will receive guaranteed admission to pursue their degrees uninterrupted at a partner institution, with comparable net tuition and transfer of all credits,” Notre Dame College added.  

“They will be able to complete their degree in relatively the same amount as they could as NDC.” 

Faculty and staff will receive support in their job searches as the college winds down its operations. 

Founded in1922 as a Catholic institution for women, Notre Dame College transitioned to co-education in 2001, aiming to provide a values-based education to a diverse student population. 


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