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Layoffs and closures at Upper Iowa University

Upper Iowa University will resort to layoffs and other major cuts to combat revenue losses from declining enrollment, shifting demographics and rising costs, according to The Gazette.

The 166-year-old private institution announced Tuesday that it would eliminate 37 faculty positions and close seven of its regional education centers across Iowa and Wisconsin. Twenty-two of the layoffs will be at the main campus in Fayette, while another 15 will be lost at the shuttered centers.

“The position eliminations reflect current enrollments and projections that significant growth in higher education is unlikely in the immediate future,” university spokesperson Lynette Brandt told The Gazette on Tuesday.

Brandt added that the cuts and closures would allow UIU to focus on supporting the Fayette campus and its more successful branch centers, including five in Louisiana, as well as its burgeoning online learning programs.

The move comes just a few weeks after UIU, the only Division II college in the state, announced it would cut seven sports from its athletics department. It also anticipates a significant reduction in tuition and fees for students attending the Fayette campus starting this fall, from over $33,000 to $19,000.

UIU’s cost-cutting follows the collapse of its peer institution, Iowa Wesleyan University, which closed in March after struggling to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.

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