King’s College Faces Financial Crisis - The American Spectator | USA News and Politics
King’s College Faces Financial Crisis
King’s College sign in New York, NY, Aug. 1, 2018 (J2R/Shutterstock)

King’s College, a tiny Christian college in the heart of New York City, is facing a financial crisis that threatens its very existence. School officials are begging donors to help them meet the college’s “immediate financial needs,” including building and payroll costs. But this is no small ask.

A letter sent to alumni gave a hefty goal of raising $2.6 million by Feb. 15As of now, only $178,000 has been raised — less than 7 percent of the school’s goal.

The college’s interim president noted several reasons for the current situation. 

“We have been caught in the perfect storm of a slow, post-Covid-19 recovery, an economic decline and rising interest rates,” interim college president Stockwell Day said.

Students are worried, but not because they’ve been closely following the exact numbers. Rather, they’ve felt the reality of this impending crisis ever since the school decided to halt providing free Chick-fil-A at the weekly public scripture reading. 

“What people always told each other is, ‘We’ll know when the college is really in trouble when they can’t offer free Chick-fil-A anymore,’” said Kings College student Melinda Huspen. “And sure enough, in the budget cuts, one of the first things they said was they wouldn’t be offering free Chick-fil-A anymore. And that’s kind of when everybody went, ‘Oh, no, this is real. This is really real.’”

To address the panic from parents and students, Day said, “[I]t is our every intent and goal to get to the end of the semester here. If anything changes, we absolutely will tell you, and yes, we are required to have a plan for a teach-out.”

Despite the hopeful statements, it seems as though the school is prepared for the worst-case scenario. 

Members of the college’s executive committee wrote in a Feb. 14 email update: “In order to be prepared for any scenario, King’s has been working with a number of colleges and universities to develop preferred transfer agreements. These agreements would be put in place should we need them, and our academic affairs staff would assist students with this process.”

School officials are hoping that a big donor can come in to save King’s College — someone like the DeVos family or megadonor Bill Hwang. But Hwang is in the midst of his own crisis after being charged with fraud and racketeering in 2022. And Richard and Helen DeVos, the school’s former trustees, died in 2018 and 2017, respectively.

King’s College is not the only small college in New York to face a financial crisis. Cazenovia College announced that it will shut its doors this spring after 200 years of operationAnd the number of colleges that have closed down has quadrupled in the past 10 years in comparison to the previous decade. 

While there may be many reasons for King’s College’s financial distress, one former employee who wished to stay anonymous noted the college has suffered from mission drift. (RELATED: Is the Educational Establishment Finally Starting to Crack?)

“The King’s College has experienced significant compromise and mission drift and, while they have had some solid conservatives teaching there, they have accommodated the whole Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion nonsense way too much. They have lost their niche and tried too hard to be a big tent, making everyone happy partly to attract more students,” the former employee told The American Spectator

“They have not had the financial resources — especially relative to the very expensive and heavily regulated area they are trying to function in — to survive the predictable decline this [mission drift] led to,” the former employee said. “I believe that many other colleges will suffer the same fate in the coming decade, but they have farther to fall before they hit rock bottom.”

Whether a result of financial winds or mission drift, King’s College is hopeful. But the donations that the college has received so far suggest that King’s College is in need of a miracle.

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