hero image

Many are the colleges and universities struggling with budgets and declining enrollments. The struggles have introduced a new concept; that merging to consolidate fundraising to keep the operations going. From an educational perspective, this would also be a good idea to eliminate colleges and universities with questionable performances.

The latest merger is between the New Hampshire Institute of Art and New England College. The two operate under very different cultures, which will eventually result in an influential union. According to Professor McCay from the New Hampshire Institute of Art, the plans and arrangements behind the merger are working well and that there is some prediction for success.

More college boards and presidents seem to agree with rising mergers

Records from strategic mergers book, more than 100 hundred institutions have merged since 2000. Before then, merging was associated with failure, especially if it was a high-profile institution. However, this has since changed, and more college presidents continue to embrace the idea.

The Chief Governing head of the Boards of Universities and Colleges, Henry Stoever, says, “I’d rather have two institutions merge than see one fail.” The president of New England College, Michele Perkins, shares in the same sentiments but she also adds that merging should not be viewed with the eyes of dissolution. Instead, the commitment should be to preserve the spirit of the institution being acquired.

Other mergers that have worked in the recent past

The mergers are not just between big institutions. There are those between small and larger schools. Take, for example, Wheelock. This was a small and private college but was acquired by Boston University in 2017 to form B.U.’s Wheelock College of Education and Human Development. In 2016, Clarkson University merged with Union Graduate College and created Clarkson’s new Capital Region Campus.

From hi 16years of teaching experience in different institutions, Professor McCay says that this is the only way many faculties can alienate fears and insecurities. And just like in marriage where everything things take time to settle, the same is going to happen with mergers but of importance is to keep moving forward.