On Thursday, June 17, 2021, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges voted to place historically Black Florida Memorial University in Miami Gardens on “probation for good cause.” At that time, Jaffus Hardrick, president of Florida Memorial University, explained that “the issues that led to this action occurred over numerous years of dealing with financial challenges, declining enrollment, and aging infrastructure.” The COVID–19 pandemic impacted enrollment for the 2020-21 academic year which prompted a significant decline in revenue.
In November 2021, the university announced that it was discontinuing 18 low enrollment, underperforming degree programs, which resulted in the elimination of 15 faculty positions. In addition, salaries of those administrators making $60,000 or more were reduced by 10 percent. The administration implemented a hiring freeze in noncritical areas, reduced university-wide travel, and cut department budgets by up to 30 percent.
The measures taken resulted in creating a more financially stable university. As a result, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges has now removed the university from probation.
“I want to express my deepest gratitude of thanks to the board of trustees, faculty, staff, students, and stakeholders for their dedication, hard work, and sacrifices, which helped to get us through this difficult process,” said Dr. Hardrick. “The decision affirms the significance and impact of our university in continuing to provide access to a quality education for many deserving students. FMU is one of the largest employers in the area and when the university succeeds, our community succeeds.”