Birmingham-Southern College future still up in the air

Published: Feb. 10, 2023 at 10:07 AM CST|Updated: Jun. 16, 2023 at 3:06 PM CDT
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - The future of Birmingham-Southern College is up in the air. This week, the college president sent an email to students discussing options regarding their future, including transferring to other schools according to state representative Juandalynn Givan.

“They are in a battle right now,” Rep. Givan said.

School president Daniel Coleman is asking the state for $30 million in funding. Coleman hopes some of the money comes from the Education Trust Fund, but there doesn’t seem to be much of an appetite for that among some lawmakers.

“I think it’s difficult to see a path forward for the state to comply with the request to use state funds to bail out the private institution for that significant amount of money,” Rep. Danny Garrett, R- Trussville said.

Givan would like to see more of a plan from the college on a path forward. Even though she doesn’t want to see the college close its doors, she has questions.

“The public, private factor with the dollars that’s number one. How did Birmingham-Southern get in this condition that’s number two. A level of transparency,” Givan said.

School leaders say their endowment fund took a hit when they tried renovating the campus in the early 2000s.

Givan is hosting a town hall next week about the financial situation. She’s hoping the college can weather the storm, but if that doesn’t happen, what’s next?

“The campus can’t sit there. Are you going to file bankruptcy? Is there consideration to possibly being chartered as a state funded school? Those are questions that need to be asked,” Givan said.

Givan’s town hall meeting is Thursday, February 16 at 6 p.m. in the auditorium of Parker High School. Givan is asking concerned citizens, alumni, faculty and staff to come and have their voices heard.

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