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Midway University to transition to being fully co-ed

Men’s athletics to begin in 2017

VERSAILLES, Ky. (May 16, 2016) — Midway University’s Board of Trustees voted unanimously at its Thursday meeting to transition to a fully coeducational institution and begin admitting men into its daytime undergraduate programs.

“Our founding mission was to provide young women with access to education at a time when education was mainly available to men,” said Dr. John P. Marsden, President of Midway University. “We have fulfilled that mission for 169 years and this decision will ensure that we continue to do so. Admitting men into our daytime undergraduate programs will allow us to serve a broader audience of traditional college students who will benefit from our programs and the learning environment we have established on campus.”

With fall 2015 enrollment of 1,042 students, one-quarter were enrolled in the Women’s College, and the residential population was under 200.

“It was time to look at options for our traditional undergraduate program,” Marsden said. “We see this as an opportunity to overcome existing challenges we have faced with tight budgets, decreased interest in single-sex education, and a national trend in declining enrollments.”

Midway already offers coeducational programs in its evening, online, and graduate programs. This change will only affect the daytime undergraduate program.

How changes affect Midway:

Notification — Midway has already begun the process of submitting notifications of this change to its accrediting bodies and licensing agency.

Implementation — Midway will begin admitting men as commuter students in its traditional daytime programs immediately for fall 2016.

Residence Halls — Applications for male students in residence halls will be accepted and considered for spring 2017; this will allow time for campus conversations with current students on incorporating men into the existing residence halls. There is no plan to construct any new residence halls at this time.

Athletics — Recruitment of male athletes will begin for fall 2017. No additional athletic fields will be added at this time.

Academic Programs — This move will allow men to access academic programs such as biology, equine studies, and other majors that have not been open to them in the past.

The Ruth Slack Roach Scholarship — This program will remain as a legacy program focused on developing leadership skills in women. The Ruth Slack Roach Leadership Scholarship program was created in memory of Ruth Slack Roach, an inspirational servant-leader.

The annual Midway Reunion — This event will be dedicated to our Women’s College graduates from the Kentucky Female Orphan School, Pinkerton High School, Midway Junior College, Midway College, and Midway University Women’s College Class of 2016. This event is held every June with graduates returning to campus for a weekend of celebration and remembrance of the time when the campus was their home.

The Midway Woman Award — Midway will continue to award this honor to a graduating senior who demonstrates a profound sense of service to others; is an outstanding leader and role model; and is of strong character.

The annual Spotlight Awards fundraiser — The Spotlight Awards event is designed to highlight women who have been leaders in representing women’s issues, who have made an impact benefiting women in the state of Kentucky and beyond, and who have been innovators in their fields.

The Lilialyce Akers Leadership Speaker Series — This series, which is named in honor of former faculty and trustee member Lilialyce Akers, will continue to bring women leaders to campus to speak on topics important to women relating to leadership skills, career growth, diversity and more.

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