WILBERFORCE UNIVERSITY UPDATE
Algeania Marie Warren Freeman, Ph.D., President
It is a tremendous pleasure to share the GOOD NEWS about the things that are occurring at Wilberforce University. The followings items are but a few things that are being worked on to continue moving Wilberforce University beyond the Show-Cause accreditation status:
- We are working on a $43 million bond issue.
- We are working on final closure of the $2 million gift from the AME Church.
- We are working on the regular audit and A133 federal audit.
- We are working on submitting HLC Financial Data Report to the Higher Learning Commission.
- We are working on trying to get forgiveness from the U.S. Department of Education $3.5 million in financial aid penalties for the years of 2009, 2010, and 2011. We are currently paying on financial aid penalties for 2009.
- We are preparing our presentation before a federal judge on January 19, 2016 for financial aid penalties for the year 2010.
- We are working on getting an external vendor who would be willing to construct two modular housing units with 500 beds for students off of the balance sheet for an estimated cost of $1.5 to $1.7 million.
- We are working on putting in a new Jenzabar administrative software system which is better suited for a smaller size institution.
- We are replacing our network infrastructure. We are putting in thirty (30) switches, and we are replacing our core server.
- We are installing eighteen (18) network security cameras.
- We are installing thirty (30) wireless network access points.
- We are finalizing the last migration of our telephone system to a true voice over IP hosted system. Putting in this new system will save the University $3,500 to $4,500 a month.
- We will be integrating over 120 computers in the next few months, and replacing older computers for staff and faculty.
- We are working on enhancing distance education by installing Structure Canvas. Faculty members are already being trained on the use of the new system, and they have begun using the new system. The Canvas system replaces Blackboard. Canvas is a cheaper system, more compatible with other software systems, and easier to use.
- We are currently building out an audio recording studio and brand new internet radio and television stations which will increase communications ability and capacity worldwide with the community, alumni, and the AME Church.
- We are working on reconditioning two buildings to house our student services and financial aid programs that will allow students to earn while they learn so that they can leave Wilberforce debt free as a part of our Promise Program.
- We are working on Performance Reports for the HBCU and SAFRA grants that are due in January 2016.
- We are working hard to maintain and exceed our Fall 2015 student enrollment (653 students in Fall 2015 as compared to 353 in Fall 2014).
- We are in the process of signing 21 partnership contracts with Warrensville Heights City School District, East Cleveland School District, Maple Heights City School District, Cleveland Public School District, and various other agencies and groups in the City of Cleveland, Ohio.
- We have been accepted into the prestigious HLC Assessment Academy that will enhance the University’s ability to remain compliant with its assessment requirements.
- We sent 29 persons to the 2015 Assessment Institute in Indianapolis.
- We have completed academic program reviews for the business and CLIMB programs.
- We produced the first Wilberforce University FACT book which provides comprehensive data and information on the status of the institution.
- We have met with NASA officials several times to work on a pre-collegiate project.
- We are working on trying to get funding support for various projects from foundations.
- We hosted a corporate reception in the City of Dayton, and we are currently hosting individual meetings with potential corporate donors.
- We are continuing to host our strong Student Leadership Development program with workshops being conducted by Griffin and Associates.
- We are having tremendous success with reinstituting our Chapel and Vespers programs, and we established a new Chapel and Student Development Office.
- We are continuing with academic program reviews and credential audits.
- We are launching a $4 million fund raising project to establish our 160 year legacy Memorial Gardens and to support student scholarships.
Wilberforce University, founded in 1856 is the country’s oldest private historically black college and university located in Wilberforce, Ohio. Affiliated with the African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church, it was the first college to be owned and operated by African Americans.
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