Yet another small college is about to go down. Lambuth University, a tiny Methodist college in Jackson, Tennessee, needs to find someone to buy it this week or the school might have to close, says Lambuth’s president. According to an article by Nicholas Beadle in the Jackson Sun:
In a brief statement Friday afternoon, Lambuth President Bill Seymour said: “There’s a higher risk of closure if a deal is not done by next Friday, but we are doing everything possible to get a deal in place and things will be decided next week in a (board of trustees) meeting.”
Meanwhile, Jackson and community leaders said Friday they were preparing as best they could for Lambuth’s future and praying the school survives.
Jackson Mayor Jerry Gist said Thursday that it is not “a big secret” that Lambuth must find a buyer or face closure. “There’s no options there,” Gist said. “They’re out of options.”
For about a year Lambuth has risked losing accreditation from the Southern Association of College and Schools. This is due to the school’s insecure financial situation. The school talked with the state earlier this year about becoming a state school but those talks, according to the Beadle article, “fizzled.”
Still, Lambuth is trying to be positive. According to Seymour, his school might have a sound plan in place soon:
I have great confidence, based on negotiations over the past few days, that we will have a deal to put in front of the Lambuth board of trustees for their approval. It will be a deal that ensures Lambuth moves forward and has every chance to grow, prosper again and continue to serve our students and this community in all the ways we want it to.
Seymour did not explain where he might find someone to purchase the school. He is keeping quiet about what the “deal” is or where he’s planning to get more money. Right now the school isn’t able to pay employees this month. [Image via]
UPDATE: It looks Lambuth survived. On May 22 the school’s board of directors agreed to sell the school to a for-profit company. Lambuth still won’t say which company.