On Oct. 14, the Board of Governors of Pennsylvania’s State System of Higher Education affirmed moving to the next phase in a process that would potentially integrate Clarion, Edinboro and California universities. The affirmation follows several months of exploration that determined that integration would help the individual universities and the State System as a whole achieve financial sustainability.
Details of the plan are being discussed, but if ultimately approved next summer, the three universities would become one accredited entity with a single leadership and budget and a unified enrollment management strategy.
Would Clarion University continue to exist? Absolutely! In fact, the integration would
ensure our ability to continue providing the exceptional education for which Clarion
University has been known since we opened our doors in 1867.
Leveraging combined scale would create expanded opportunities for the traditional face-to-face student experience, deliver new online offering, as well as uncover cost efficiencies, which would keep Clarion University and other State System universities accessible.
Through the collective talent of the faculty and staff at Clarion, California and Edinboro, we would reconceive, rebuild, refresh and expand what we offer to students. We would help shape the future of public higher education, not just in Pennsylvania, but nationwide.
Our current and future students would have access to a more diversified academic programming array than Clarion alone could offer, yet they would still enjoy what makes Clarion University unique. Collectively, the three universities serve more than 16,000 students, and we see this an opportunity for a greater number of students to experience what separates Clarion from other universities.
The integration would position the three schools to stand up a low-cost, high quality online undergraduate degree and degree completion program. Clarion repeatedly is recognized for excellence in online education. With the strength that California and Edinboro add, collectively we would develop a Pennsylvania-based, Pennsylvania-connected online program that's affordable and relevant to careers in the commonwealth.
We are excited at the opportunities that lie ahead. The integration of Clarion, Edinboro and California universities, through combined scale and geographical proximity, would create opportunities to reach new markets of students and meet regional workforce needs.
Through this work, we would ensure not just the long-term viability of Clarion, but also of its 13 sister universities and Pennsylvania's State System of Higher Education.