NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — There’s fear and uncertainty instead of pomp and circumstance on the campus of the College of New Rochelle.
From its main campus in Westchester, the college grew to satellite campuses in Harlem, the Bronx, and Brooklyn. This week, the private school announced it could run out of money and may have to close.
The 3,000 enrolled at CNR are uncertain what their future holds. Among them are the student-athletes on the Blue Angels softball team, who found out the news during practice.
“My heart just sunk, I was like I don’t know what to do,” Sienna Stockton said. “These are my girls, gonna miss everybody especially the professors.”
For more than two years CNR has been in crisis mode following an audit that revealed hidden mounting financial obligations amounting to more than $30 million in unpaid debt.
CNR sold off real estate and laid off dozens of staff and faculty members. 14 professors are suing for back pay and reinstatement. An anonymous $5 million gift bought CNR some time, but an email sent out Friday says time and money are running out. The school is “unlikely” to operate after the class of 2019 graduates, according to the email.
“I made so many friends here,” student Emily Gonzalez said. “It’s my first year here, my second semester here and now it’s just like… all gonna go away.”
Hours before the news, the college was tweeting about early acceptances for the class of 2023. Now, the only hope seems to be a partnership or takeover by another institution.
Sources tell CBS2’s Tony Aiello the college is negotiating just that, so while it’s name may be written in stone its future is most certainly not.
CNR admitted only women until it went co-ed in 2016 in an effort to increase enrollment.