Here’s what MPR’s Tim Post got from officials at Crossroad College and the Mayo Clinic College of Medicine regarding their inclusion on a federal list of financially fragile colleges:
President Michael Kilgallin admits times are tough: “The college has been struggling financially, that is true.”
The problem, Kilgallin said, is that the college took on debt a few years ago when it financed $3 million worth of construction on campus. Combine that debt payment with losses in the school’s endowment and losses in real estate holdings, and their fiscal year 2009 books closed in the red by $340,000.
But being on the list doesn’t mean the college is about to shut its doors, Kilgallin said: “Those ratios often are not a fair depiction of what is taking place inside the college.”
Crossroads no problem paying its bills, or paying employees. But like other colleges, the money socked away was hit hard by the downturn on Wall Street.
Kilgallin says he’s optimistic about the college’s future financial picture. One indicator is enrollment. He says its up to 172 students, six percent more than last year.
Officials at Mayo say their score is artificially low because the Mayo is a different kind of enterprise than a typical university. The Department of Ed compares tuition revenue with overall expenditures. And in Mayo’s case the amount of tuition revenue coming in is a relatively small portion of the $7 billion dollars the entire clinic makes and spends in a year.
For more, check out Tim’s radio piece on the subject.