BECKLEY, W.Va. — The University of Charleston is taking over Mountain State University’s campuses in Beckley and Martinsburg, UC officials announced today at a news conference on Mountain State’s campus in Beckley.
The announcement provides some clarity for the hundreds of MSU students still in MSU’s pipeline reeling from the news that Mountain State University was the first institution in West Virginia history to have its accreditation revoked.
The Higher Learning Commission withdrew MSU’s general accreditation in early July for years of breakdowns in leadership, program oversight, integrity issues and failing to properly communicate with students.
MSU has submitted its intent to appeal the HLC’s decision on the grounds that the ruling was “arbitrary, capricious and not based on substantial evidence.” MSU’s accreditation now extends through Dec. 31 to allow MSU to implement a teach-out program for students who are eligible to graduate by the end of 2012.
University of Charleston faculty will teach classes at MSU’s campuses in Beckley and Martinsburg during the fall 2012 semester to help those students.
“The closing of Mountain State University is sad and tragic for students, for faculty and staff, and for the Beckley and Martinsburg communities,” said UC President Ed Welch. “UC is committed to filling the void that will be left and to maintaining a private higher education presence in Southern West Virginia and in the Eastern Panhandle.”
UC also announced Wednesday that it will establish a four-year private college center in Beckley. The University of Charleston will continue to use the Beckley campus for its programs when MSU’s accreditation expires at the end of the year.