GREAT FALLS, MONTANA – Like many colleges and universities across the country, the University of Providence (UP) is experiencing the realities of a new era in education. Enrollments are declining across the country due to changing demographics, a greater interest in technical skills, and other factors. Most recently, the sudden impact and effects of COVID-19 has caused institutions like UP to think and act differently within academia.
Chairman of the Board of Trustees, Terry Cosgrove, says of the challenging times, “As we work through these difficult times, the Board and President have to collaboratively reduce operating costs and programming so that we can sustain long-term viability for the university.”
The UP is responding to the times by adapting to these new realities and looking ahead to shape a prosperous educational future for its students, staff and faculty, as well as the community of Great Falls.
Today the UP Board of Trustees voted to sunset the following programs: Accounting (BS, 4+1 and MS), Chemistry, Mathematics, and Computer Science. Reflecting on this decision, Fr. Oliver Doyle, President said, “For UP, as for every institution, sunsetting programs comes with a great deal of heartache, but as educational and career training needs change, we are called to adapt and respond.”
President Doyle continued to discuss the impact of these decisions. “My first thoughts are with those who are affected the most by this decision: faculty and their families, students and our University community. I am so grateful and proud of the many years of service our affected faculty members have given to the University, and I am committed to making this transition for them and our students as easy as the situation allows.” Students will be given the opportunity to complete their degree programs and necessary requirements for accreditation.
While committed to financially viable and cornerstone educational programs, UP strives to remain faithful to the legacy of the Sisters of Providence who encourage us to provide education and formation for all, but especially the underserved.