Medaille College to consolidate as it faces deficit

Feb 19, 2014

Medaille College in Buffalo reveals that it will be closing its Amherst campus as it deals with major fiscal problems.

Medaille College campus in Buffalo.
Credit WBFO News file photo

College president Richard Jurasek tells WBFO News enrollment in graduate education and graduate business programs has not come back from the "Great Recession" and cuts must be made.  

"By September first going to move all teaching and support operations from our Amherst campus to our Agassiz Circle campus in Buffalo," said Jurasek.  "The market conditions have changed so quickly that we're dealing with this aggressively head on."

Richard Jurasek, president of Medaille College.
Credit Photo from Medaille College Website

Medaille's Board of Trustees approved the action.

The college is planning cuts in staff and faculty to deal with a deficit of $2.2 million last year and a larger deficit this year. 

Jurasek said closing Amherst means there are too many staff members.

"We needed a registrar in Rochester. We needed a registrar in Amherst. We needed a registrar here at Agassiz Circle. So, there are a host of professional offices which is to say the people who work in these domains often earn well," said Jurasek.

Jurasek noted undergraduate enrollment and on-line education are doing fine.  He said the fiscal difficulty reflects the problems of higher education in all of Western New York with a massive drop in the traditional college-age population and shifts to college-age groups in the South and West.

A letter issued by Jurasek delivered the gloomy news in which he called it a "watershed moment" for the school.