As Parent Company ITT Shuts Down, Future of Daniel Webster College is Uncertain

Sep 7, 2016

Eaton Richmond Hall at Daniel Webster College.
Credit www.lbpa.com

With its parent company shutting down, the future of Daniel Webster College is uncertain.

ITT Educational Services purchased the Nashua college in 2009. The chain of for-profit colleges announced this week its more than 130 technical institutes across the country would close immediately.

The move is in response to a crackdown by the U.S. Department of Education on for-profit colleges enrolling students receiving federal aid.

While officials at Daniel Webster College say the school plans to remain open and students there can still use federal aid, questions remain about where the school goes from here.

In an email to students and staff Tuesday, Daniel Webster President Michael Diffily acknowledged that without ITT’s support, it will be difficult for the college to remain open.

He said other institutions have approached ITT about acquiring Daniel Webster College, though even that could lead to a “teach out” and eventual closure.

The college has about 650 students, 21 full-time faculty members and 67 part-time faculty members, according to numbers from the college's website. 

The Nashua Telegraph reports the city's Board of Alderman has called a special meeting to discuss the college's future. That meeting is scheduled for Sept. 14. Diffily has been asked to attend. 

Meanwhile, the college’s accrediting agency – the New England Association of Schools and Colleges, or NEASC – is threatening to pull Daniel Webster accreditation, in light of ITT’s struggles.

In a Sept. 1 letter, NEASC wrote that because the finances and continuation of Daniel Webster College could be at risk, the college may not meet the organization’s accreditation standards.

NEASC requested Daniel Webster officials attend a meeting later this month to show why the school’s accreditation shouldn’t be withdrawn.