Minneapolis Business College, a for-profit institution in Roseville focused on career preparation, will close its doors in December due to declining enrollment, the school announced Monday.
Current students will finish their programs, and the college will work with students enrolled in fall classes to find other opportunities, said Martin Calihan, president of Bradford Schools, a Pittsburgh-based company that owns Minneapolis Business College and a handful of other for-profit schools across the country.
"We've had declining enrollments over a number of years," Calihan said. "And it got to the point where, with our lease term ending, we decided that it would be best to focus our resources on our current students so they all have an opportunity to graduate and get job placement assistance."
About 90 students are now enrolled at Minneapolis Business College, which was founded in 1874, down from about 300 at the school's peak a decade ago, Calihan said.
Most students are enrolled in 16-month career training programs in a range of fields, including accounting, computer science and graphic design. Calihan said about 100 students were signed up to start courses in the fall.
"It's sad for some people to think that it's going to now wind down," Calihan said. "But I think that people understand that we're trying to do right by all of our students."
Twenty-five employees make up the college's administration, staff and faculty, according to the school's academic catalog. Calihan said two people will remain on staff into the spring of 2020 to help those graduating in December find jobs.
Minneapolis Business College is the latest in a string of for-profit colleges and universities in Minnesota deciding to close their doors for good. In March, Argosy University's Eagan campus closed suddenly in the middle of the semester, leaving hundreds of students out thousands of dollars and scrambling to finish their degrees. Globe University/Minnesota School of Business, ITT Technical Institute and the McNally Smith College of Music also closed in recent years.
Another college owned by Bradford School, International Business College in Fort Wayne, Ind., announced on its website that it will close after students graduate in February 2020, also citing declining enrollment.
"We have always had very high graduation rates, and we've always had very high job placement rates," Calihan said. "But, you know, the world's moving away from higher education and student debt and all those things."