Claudia Schrader, president of Kingsborough Community College in Brooklyn, N.Y., is getting ready for the day’s meetings. She puts on a pair of bright-blue sneakers, a casual accent to her professional black sheath dress, and a navy-blue mask with the college’s logo in orange. She heads out of her office, flanked by two public safety officers, her communications and governance relations manager, and her special projects manager.
Schrader sits in the back seat of one of the two minivans that she and her entourage have packed into and chats with the driver about the best route to their destination. There are three off-campus meetings scheduled on this particular day, all of them with students who will be attending the college next fall.
These drives have become routine since Schrader started visiting incoming students last summer in the thick of the pandemic, when they could not take classes in person at the campus in Manhattan Beach. Since students couldn’t come to the campus, she decided to bring a little bit of the campus to them. Schrader calls these visits her “welcome wagon.”
With the acquisition of Wesley College, Delaware State, a public institution, will take over Wesley’s 50-acre campus and capital assets appraised at about $32 million. Delaware State will also gain 14 new academic programs, including a master’s program in occupational therapy.
What was Wesley College, a 148-year-old private institution affiliated with the United Methodist Church, is now the Wesley College of Health & Behavioral Sciences within Delaware State. The college will offer programs in allied/public health, kinesiology, nursing, occupational therapy, psychology and social work.
No money changed hands in the acquisition. In lieu of a purchase price, Delaware State agreed to take on Wesley’s liabilities. The university also agreed to accept all Wesley students in good standing.
To date, 387 former Wesley students have registered to continue their studies at Delaware State, and another 85 students are in the process of registering. Together, they make up 77% of former Wesley students.
With this gift, the University of Oregon’s Phil and Penny Knight Campus for Accelerating Scientific Impact will further expand its strengths in bioengineering and applied scientific research and training, creating new opportunities for additional students, adding faculty positions and funding a second building.
Launched in 2016 with the first $500 million gift from the Knights, the campus embodies a new paradigm for scientific inquiry that accelerates the cycle of translating scientific discoveries into solutions that create societal impact. The Knight Campus stands as a prime example of how private philanthropy is redefining the university for generations to come.