Cheyney University Struggles to Stay Afloat Despite Aid Received

Photo Courtesy / Wikimedia Commons Cheyney University has continued to struggle with retention rates despite support provided by other universities in PASSHE. Photo Courtesy / Wikimedia Commons
Cheyney University has continued to struggle with retention rates despite support provided by other universities in PASSHE.

By Nicholas Russo
Staff Writer

Cheyney University is one of the oldest historically black colleges and it is currently experiencing a downfall. Many are questioning whether or not this institution can survive its recent financial struggles.

According to an article from www.philly.com, “The financially troubled school has struggled for years to halt plummeting enrollment…” This has been a growing problem for this university and it is now struggling in a sea of debt.

The Pennsylvania’s state university system promised to forgive $30 million in loans from Cheyney if it can manage to maintain a balanced budget over the next four years.

“They have to submit a balanced budget if they want their accreditation to be continued,” said Kenn Marshall, a spokesperson for the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE).

Cheyney University has been struggling for the past few years to keep its doors open. Due to lack of enrollment, the university has been losing millions of dollars, which has resulted in them being put on probation by the commission board.

If Cheyney University fails to submit a budget by Sept., students will lose the opportunity for state and federal aid.

“I join my APSCUF colleagues around Pennsylvania in our support of Cheyney. As an HBCU (historical black college or university), Cheyney continues to educate deserving students.” said Dr. Nancy VanArsdale, one of Association of Pennsylvania State College and University Faculties’ (APSCUF) chapter presidents.

“I know APSCUF is willing to work as a partner with the State System to secure Cheyney’s future,” said VanArsdale.

Cheyney has been under a series of investigations according to an article published on www.philly.com the article stated, “Cheyney is under investigation by the Justice Department for mishandling $29 million in financial aid funds, a sum nearly equal to its annual budget and money it could be required to pay back.”

The article continued, “It faces additional scrutiny for raiding more than $3.4 million in scholarship funds and other restricted accounts to balance its budget, in possible violation of state and federal law.”

Cheyney University is doing its very best to keep its doors open. The university has gained a handful of support from outside individuals. The faculty of Cheyney University, including the president of the university, and the board of trustees have expressed their gratitude for all of the help they have been receiving since this all began to happen in 2015.

Email Nick at:
nrusso2@live.esu.edu

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