Monday, June 18, 2007

Antioch College to Close; Board Hopes to Reopen in 2012

The Chronicle:: By PAUL FAIN

Antioch College to close; board hopes to reopen in 2012

Antioch College, a 154-year-old liberal-arts institution in Ohio known for activist policies, will close next year because of budget deficits and dwindling enrollment, college officials said on Tuesday.

The college is the residential undergraduate component of Antioch University, whose Board of Trustees voted over the weekend to shutter the campus under a plan that calls for fixing its finances and reopening it in 2012. Antioch University also has five nonresidential campuses around the country, all of which are to remain open.

"The decision was agonizing," said one trustee, Barbara Slaner Winslow. "For many of us, the meeting was like a funeral," said Ms. Winslow, an Antioch alumna who is an associate professor of women's and social studies at the City University of New York's Brooklyn College. ...

The trustees also declared a state of financial exigency, which means most of Antioch College's 160 full-time faculty and staff members will be laid off by July 2008. College operations will be suspended at that point, but a university spokeswoman said an undetermined number of staff members would stay on to maintain facilities. The university will also establish a commission to determine the college's long-term future, and some staff members might be included on that commission...

Antioch is perhaps best known for its liberal initiatives, such as eliminating grades and a sexual-offense-prevention policy from the mid-1990s that required specific "verbal consent" for every step of intimacy. But the college also has a long list of famous alumni, including Coretta Scott King and Stephen Jay Gould. Its first president was the education reformer Horace Mann...


A. Leon Higginbotham Jr., 1949, federal judge

Clifford Geertz, 1950, anthropologist

Rod Serling, 1950, television writer

Coretta Scott King, 1951, civil-rights activist

Fred I. Greenstein, 1953, presidential scholar

Eleanor Holmes Norton, 1960, District of Columbia delegate in Congress

Stephen Jay Gould, 1963, paleontologist

Jorma Kaukonen, 1964, rock guitarist

Cary Nelson, 1967, literature scholar and president of the American Association of University Professors

Barbara Wallraff, 1972, word-usage expert

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