SOUTHINGTON - Lincoln College of New England, formerly Briarwood College, has announced that it will be closing Dec. 31 and will not be enrolling students for its fall term.
Jim Vernon, president of the for-profit school, sent out an email to students Monday morning explaining the decision to close the school. When efforts were made to reach out to him, he declined to comment further. He directed students with further questions to lincolncollegene.edu’s frequently asked questions section, and a schedule of upcoming information sessions for students in the college’s various programs.
Lincoln College of New England offered courses in mortuary science, nursing, dental hygiene, occupational therapy, criminal justice, business and management, health information, billing and coding, human services and broadcasting. Vernon said he didn’t know what would become of the campus after it closes.
The college held its 51st and last commencement May 11. There were 168 graduates. Current students will be able to transfer their credits to Goodwin College thanks to a memorandum of understanding signed by the two colleges.
The following is the email that Vernon sent to students:
“Dear Lincoln College of New England Student,
“I have truly enjoyed my time with you here serving as interim president so it is very difficult to write this letter to you in regards to the status of the college. Due to some recent events, the decision has been made to close this college as of Dec. 31 2018. Therefore, we will not be enrolling any new students for the fall 2018 term. Please be aware that LCNE has worked hard to find you another academic option in the area to help you start your collegiate career. That information is provided in the paragraphs below.
“As we have communicated to you over the past several months, our college has been undergoing its normal reaccreditation process with the New England Association of Schools and Colleges Inc.’s Commission on Institutions of Higher Education (NEASC). Unfortunately, on July 26 2018, we were notified by NEASC of their commission’s decision to place our college on probation based on several factors that you can find on our website, lincolncollegene.edu.
“Subsequent to making the difficult decision to close on Dec. 31, 2018, we engaged with Goodwin College, another NEASC-accredited institution in the region, to discuss assisting students with the completion of their programs of study. As you may know, Goodwin College is a local, non-profit college offering many of the same programs offered here at LCNE. Thus, it made sense to reach out to Goodwin for their assistance.
“As of today, Goodwin College and LCNE have signed a memorandum of understanding that will help facilitate the transfer of students to Goodwin College if you so choose. We know there are many different opportunities with institutions in the region that you may explore to help you complete your program of study. With that in mind, if you choose to transfer your credits to Goodwin, we want you to know that Goodwin will be on the LCNE campus to help you with that process.
“In addition, in order to alleviate any concerns and to provide further direction, we will be setting up informational sessions for current students based on your program of study from Aug. 21 through Aug. 25. A schedule containing the times of these sessions will be provided to you soon and posted on the LCNE website. If you are not able to make this informational session, we are always willing to meet with you individually.
“LCNE has always made it a practice to be transparent with our students about its ongoing activities. To that end, I have included a ‘frequently asked questions’ form that should provide immediate answers to some of your questions. If this document does not answer all of your questions, please know that LCNE will be operating until Dec. 31 and we will have staff on campus to help you with anything regarding your transfer to another institution.
“Also, as part of the memorandum of understanding, both Goodwin and LCNE have appointed an ombudsman from each campus who will help serve you.
“Lastly, I want to thank you for attending LCNE as well as recognize all the staff and faculty that have worked tirelessly and dedicated their professional careers to helping students. Our college has truly had an impact on the lives of many people in the State of Connecticut and we wish you much success in your career goals.”
Brian M. Johnson can be reached at 860-973-1806 or email@example.com.