In January 2017, St. Joseph College in Rensselaer, Indiana announced that it was suspending operation for the fall semester.
The college is deep in debt and closing temporarily could be a way for the school to balance their financial deficit, now sitting at $100 million.
Few people may have forgotten the connection between St. Joseph’s College and Calumet College of St. Joseph.
“ The suspension of traditional academic programming at Saint Joe’s is painful for all of us at Calumet College of St. Joseph as well. As you may know, we, too, were founded by the Missionaries of the Precious Blood,” says Dr. Dan Lowery, President of CCSJ. “In fact, we opened our doors in 1951 as an outreach initiative sponsored by St. Joseph’s College. The loss of our sister institution is painful for all of us.”
In 1951, Saint Joseph College opened Calumet College of Saint Joseph as an extension in Lake County, Indiana.
CCSJ was known as the Calumet Center for courses taught at Bishop Noll Institute in Hammond and St. John Baptist Church in Whiting.
In 1960, the Board of Trustees expanded Calumet Center into a four-year degree college. St Joseph’s College Calumet Campus became the first college in the Calumet Region to offer a baccalaureate degree program.
The college moved to a new location in East Chicago, where it stayed for 15 years.
In In the summer of 1971, the College was renamed St. Joseph Calumet College.
In CCSJ separated from St. Joseph’s College in 1973.
On December 31, 1973, the American Oil Company donated 256 acres of land to Calumet College in the college’s present location in Whiting.
Bronte Eather, a former student at CCSJ who now attends SJC, said students did know what to make of the closing.
“It was a shock at first but it has only made relationships stronger and the students have banded together,” Eather said.
Eather said the professors have put the students first and plan to give the students the best possible education with the time remaining. But Eather, who played soccer while at CCSJ, said SCJ students are also looking at transferring to other schools. She’s even looking to return to CCSJ.
“It is an important decision so we aren’t taking it lightly. But we have a lot of support from our peers and professors to help us through the process,” she continues on mentioning she is interested in coming back however she still has to think about it because it is an important decision.”
CCSJ is trying to sweeten the pot for SJC students to transfer here.
CCSJ is offering:
The full acceptance of credits from Saint Joseph’s College;
A “teach out” strategy that will allow you to receive a degree from St. Joseph’s College if you so desire and if you have earned 90 or more credit hours;
A guaranteed path to graduation within four years if the student is currently on a path to accomplish this goal;
Net tuition equal to or less than the net tuition the SCJ student is now being charged; and
A meeting with CCSJ athletic coaches to explore the opportunity to join a team.
“Our hope now is to be of some assistance to Saint Joe’s students who are looking for a new home,” Dr. Lowery said.
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