A three-judge panel today (Jan. 16) cleared the way for West Virginia University’s agreement to ultimately purchase assets associated with the Mountain State University campus in Beckley.
“We are truly delighted to have this opportunity to better serve the people of this state by having a presence in Beckley,” WVU President Gordon Gee said. “We look forward to creating collaborative and unique educational experiences for all students of West Virginia.”
Following a review under an exclusive due diligence agreement entered into in November, and then extended, West Virginia University offered to purchase the Beckley assets for $8 million on Dec. 31. The Mountain State board accepted the offer, pending court approval.
Several former Mountain State students had filed suit against the school following its closure, and the proceeds from WVU’s purchase will help provide a fund for paying a previously-agreed-to settlement in the suit. The plaintiffs had no objection to the sale to WVU.
Gee said the University anticipates forming working groups with Concord University, Bluefield State College, other area higher education institutions, as well as civic and industry leaders to develop pathways for collaboration for the Beckley campus.
“Now the real work begins,” said WVU Provost Joyce McConnell. “Having such a strong presence in the southern part of the state offers WVU the opportunity to provide a unique, tailored academic environment that will match the needs of the region. We look forward to collaborating with our academic colleagues and others in the region to develop coordinated, efficient academic opportunities for the people there.”
McConnell said several steps remain prior to the completion of the acquisition. The University will continue its analysis of facilities, academic programming, student recruitment, financial modeling and community engagement.
WVU hopes to finalize the acquisition by spring of 2015, and begin offering classes by fall 2016.
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