Kirkwood Community College is set to relocate a “majority” of its Iowa City operations to the Kirkwood Regional Center at the University of Iowa in Coralville, effective this fall.
The institution will also look to expand its partnership with Iowa City Public Schools, according to the release.
“The Kirkwood Regional Center at the University of Iowa meets our needs as it has plenty of space,” said Kirkwood President Lori Sundberg in a statement. “Our research also indicates the site is a more accessible location for the community overall. Additionally, looking for new and expanded ways to work with our K-12 partner in their newly acquired facility also makes good sense as it allows us to maintain a presence in Iowa City in a more cost effective manner with current enrollment levels. The new locations, as well as the cost savings, will allow us to focus more resources to give our students the support they need to succeed.”
In a message to faculty and staff, Ms. Sundberg said she anticipates the decision will allow Kirkwood to “maintain and even increase” overall enrollment in Johnson County.
Credit and noncredit classes will move to Coralville.
In June, Kirkwood closed its Tippie-Mansfield Center in Belle Plaine and the Cedar County Center in Tipton due to low enrollment. The school moved its NewBo City Market classes to the main campus in April.
Kirkwood will look to sell its Iowa City location, expecting the sale will save nearly $400,000 in operational costs annually, according to the release.
“We face a challenge in figuring out how best to support today’s students both inside and outside of the classroom, while also balancing our expenses and revenues,” said Ms. Sundberg. “This consolidation allows our institution to focus more of our resources on student support.”
Ms. Sundberg said in her message to staff she hopes the relocation, in addition to ACT selling the Tyler Building on its main campus to the Iowa City Community School District (ICCSD), will help bridge “potential synergies” as a result of being physically closer to the school district. Discussions between Kirkwood and the ICCSD are ongoing.
“The college faces a major challenge in figuring out how best to support the expanding needs of our students both inside and outside of the classroom, while balancing our expenses and revenues,” she said. “Kirkwood is financially strong today. However, we will need to get our expenses in line with our revenues to ensure our fiscal strength for the future.”
In November, Ms. Sundberg announced she would be retiring from her role as president but would remain in the position until November.