Earlier this year South Carolina State University in Orangeburg reported a total deficit of $13.6 million. The operating deficit has resulted, at least in part, to a significant decline in enrollments at the historically Black university. In 2007, there were 4,900 students enrolled. In the spring 2014 semester there were 3,100 students enrolled.
This past summer, the Southern Association of Colleges and School’s Commission on Colleges placed South Carolina State University on accreditation probation. The accrediting agency found that the university was deficient in eight areas, including many dealing with financial matters. The eight areas of concern were: financial resources, financial stability, control of finances, student financial aid, organizational structure, governance, qualified academic and administrative officers, and control of sponsored and external funds.
Now, South Carolina State University has received approval from the state’s Bond Review Committee for a $12 million loan that will be paid out over three years. The university will receive $6 million in the first year in four quarterly installments of $1.5 million.
Thomas J. Elzey, president of South Carolina State University said that “this money will help us pay our bills.” But Dr. Elzey went on to say that “the university requires resources beyond paying our bills. We have infrastructure needs. We have scholarship needs. We have laboratory needs. There are a whole host of other issues.”