Please continue to check in as the DHE will be updating this webpage with more information as it becomes available. Though Mount Ida has closed, it continues to provide updated information on student transitions to new programs, which can be found at: https://www.mountida.edu/transition-updates/.
As of June 25, 2018
Mount Ida College’s closure plan was received by the Board of Higher Education on May 16, 2018 and has been formally approved. The following information, from the closure plan as well as from the Department of Higher Education’s own work on ensuring appropriate protections and pathways for Mount Ida students, may be helpful to you as you navigate this institutional closure:
Effective May 17, 2018 Mount Ida College ceased operations and is closed for business.
Student Records: As of May 17, the University of Massachusetts Amherst will maintain Mount Ida College student records. Former students can request a copy of their Mount Ida College transcript at www.umass.edu/registrar/mtida.
Transfer Assistance Support: An experienced admissions counselor based at Mount Ida College will continue to provide support to students who require assistance to transfer to other institutions. Students can schedule an individual appointment with the counselor by calling 617-928-4706.
Carlos E. Santiago, Commissioner of Higher Education, testified before the Senate Committee on Post Audit and Oversight on May 16, 2018, with regards to the Mount Ida closure and UMass acquisition.
Attorney General Maura Healey announced today that she is allowing the purchase of Mount Ida College by the University of Massachusetts Amherst to move forward, while she will continue to investigate whether the board and administrators of Mount Ida College violated their fiduciary duties. The letter reads, in part:
“Based on the deeply regrettable circumstances here, the AGO expedited its review of the narrow issue of whether MIC will receive fair value for its assets through the Transaction and concludes that the proposed Transaction amounts to fair value for MIC's assets. We also understand that a closing before May 16, 2018 will avoid bankruptcy, ensure payment of outstanding wages to MIC employees, and secure many UMass commitments to MIC students. If the Transaction does not take place, the consequences to the MIC community will be more devastating than they would be if the Transaction occurs. … We will continue to be in touch as, in the coming weeks, we will review the actions of the MIC Board and senior administrators in addressing MIC's financial condition to consider whether or not these parties violated their fiduciary obligations under charities law.”
In addition, the Attorney General’s Office, with the assistance of the DHE, has secured several commitments from UMass and other institutions to help Mount Ida students continue their education, including solutions for certain specialty programs, enhanced credit transfer, continued transfer advising and support services, and protection of student records. Details on these agreements are included in the letter sent to Mount Ida representatives today.
Mount Ida students who are transferring or applying to another college or university and require their official Mount Ida transcripts can order their transcripts online at https://www.credentials-inc.com/tplus/?ALUMTRO002193 until noon on May 17th. Transcripts will not be sent to any college, university, or other entity on behalf of the student, including UMass Dartmouth, unless the student makes such a request. We strongly encourage students to make their transcript request orders online before the May 17th deadline. An announcement from Mount Ida regarding the process for obtaining a transcript after May 17th is forthcoming, and the DHE will share those details once Mount Ida has finalized and announced them.
Pat Marshall, DHE Deputy Commissioner for Academic Affairs and Student Success, today sent a memo to chief academic officers of Massachusetts public colleges and universities to provide information on the expedited program review process for those institutions that are developing new programs for the purpose of accommodating the best interests of Mt. Ida students displaced by the sudden closure of the college. These public institutions may submit applications between April 15 and August 15, 2018 for either new degree programs or teach-out authority. These options have been created and are offered as a triage based on the immediate and urgent needs of Mt. Ida students.
The DHE has received inquiries from Mount Ida families asking whether the report of the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC)’s periodic review of Mount Ida College in October 2017 is available. Mount Ida has recently posted this report, and it is available on their website at https://www.mountida.edu/facts/accreditation/.
The NEASC Commission on Institutions of Higher Education (CIHE) has also recently shared consumer information related to repayment and transfer of credit at https://cihe.neasc.org/. The CIHE has drafted a statement regarding the closure of Mount Ida, which can be downloaded here. It reads, in part:
“While the acceptance of any student for admission or the transfer of credit remains solely a decision of each regionally accredited institution, [CIHE] appreciates the importance of its accredited institutions doing what they can to help students understand their opportunities and options so that their education is minimally disrupted. A link to the Commission’s statement on Transfer and Award of Academic Credit may be found here.”
The US Department of Education’s Office of Federal Student Aid reached out to the DHE regarding Mount Ida’s closure, and that office can also serve as a resource for Mount Ida students and families. The Office of Federal Student Aid will be assembling school-specific information that they plan to make available for students once the closure is finalized, and a link to it will be posted on this webpage as soon as it is available.
In the interim, the Office of Federal Student Aid also has general information about closed schools and loan repayment posted here for students. Any students with questions about Federal Student Aid can check out their website or call the Office of Federal Student Aid’s Program Compliance team, directly at (617) 289-0133. The Office of Federal Student Aid team is happy to assist Mount Ida students and families in any way that they can.
The Department has been working over the last few weeks with Mount Ida officials to identify institutions with programs comparable to those at Mount Ida, and the Department has requested that Mount Ida enter into transfer agreements with such institutions. These transfer agreements will ensure that Mount Ida students have options available to them as they decide where to continue their educational programs and will help to ease the transition for students. Mount Ida is regularly updating its website with available transfer options as agreements are entered into by the institutions and approved by the Department. Please continue to check the Mount Ida webpage, as updates will continue on a near-daily basis as more agreements are finalized.
Download Materials: Mount Ida Closure Presentation
On Tuesday, April 24 beginning at 9:00AM, the Academic Affairs Committee of the Board of Higher Education will be holding a regularly scheduled meeting on the 21st floor of the McCormack Building, One Ashburton Place, Boston. The closure of Mount Ida College has been added to the committee’s agenda. The committee will receive a report from Department of Higher Education staff on the current situation at Mount Ida, as well as the Department’s role in closures in general, and will also allow for public comment/participation. The Department anticipates that the report and public comment regarding Mount Ida will be first on the agenda and will begin promptly at 9:00AM. Regular committee business will follow, likely beginning around 10:30AM.
If you wish to speak at the committee meeting on April 24, you should email firstname.lastname@example.org at least 24 hours before the meeting (i.e., by 9:00AM on Monday, April 23). Speakers will have three minutes to address the committee. To the extent possible, people representing the same group should consolidate their comments and designate one representative to speak for the group. If you plan to attend the April 24 meeting, please bring photo identification to proceed through building security.
If you have any questions, please email MountIdaComments@dhe.mass.edu.
Mount Ida is hosting a college fair on Tuesday, April 17 from 9am–1pm at the Mount Ida Athletic Center. At present, more than 60 schools will be in attendance to talk to students about the academic offerings on each campus and transfer possibilities. The DHE will be at the fair, along with representatives from the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office, to speak with students and parents. More information on the fair can be found at: https://www.mountida.edu/updates/school-options/.
Carlos Santiago, the Commissioner of Higher Education, has issued a statement about the closure of Mount Ida and the Department of Higher Education’s focus on helping Mount Ida students find appropriate alternatives for their education.