WMU Waves Bye-Bye To Florida Campus
Western Michigan University is shutting down its Punta Gorda, Florida operation. The main emphasis of the "campus" was aviation, but also had a music therapy program located there, too. However, the success that was anticipated never materialized and operations will shutdown later this year on August 31st.
After more than a year and a half of research and market analysis, WMU programs began operating in Punta Gorda in fall 2017. From early on, the plans for the location were built on the expectation that new WMU aviation programs, combined with collaboration with local economic development partners and Florida Southwestern State College--FSW--, would attract new private student housing that would become a magnet for housing and retail development that is attractive to students. Those plans did not materialize. Shifting higher education demographics and enrollment trends in the region are of concern to WMU. In addition, WMU’s aviation program enrollment has also been substantially less than anticipated in the first two years of operation. - Western Michigan University release
WMU says it needed 200 students to be enrolled and that didn't happen.
"Enrollment projections and elements critical to the location’s success have not developed as anticipated," said Dr. Jennifer Bott, WMU provost and vice president for academic affairs. "Given the changed landscape and our refined enrollment projections, I am confident we can best serve our students by fully focusing on the College of Aviation at its Battle Creek location."