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EGCC to pause registration, enrollment beyond spring semester

STEUBENVILLE — Eastern Gateway Community College announced Wednesday that it will pause registration and enrollment for terms beyond the spring semester.

The decision will provide an opportunity for Eastern Gateway, with locations in Steubenville and Youngstown, to evaluate options to resolve ongoing financial difficulties partly due to delayed federal funding.

“We have a plan to ensure students finish this semester as normal,” said Jim Gasior, chairman of Eastern Gateway’s Board of Trustees. “And while we pause registration for the summer and beyond, Youngstown State University primarily and community colleges from throughout the region have offered to welcome our students, provide continuity and allow students to continue their programs of study as seamlessly as possible for their next semester.”

Youngstown State recently began working with Eastern Gateway and the Ohio Department of Higher Education on backup plans to ensure academically eligible students are able to enroll at YSU or collaborating community colleges to complete their degrees. Examples of similar programs at YSU and the community colleges include business, criminal justice, information technology, mechanical engineering, social work, teacher education, dental hygiene, nursing and many more.

“YSU cares deeply about the people in our region and we are honored to work with Eastern Gateway and the Ohio Department of Higher Education to support students in this manner,” YSU President Bill Johnson said. “We are pleased to ensure that affected students have the opportunity to register for classes at Youngstown State University. Additionally, we look forward to working with the Ohio Department of Higher Education and our regional community college partners to help those students who wish to continue on their academic pathway at one of Ohio’s two-year schools.”

Ohio community colleges that will welcome Eastern Gateway students include Belmont College, Stark State College, Washington State College of Ohio, Cuyahoga Community College, and Hocking College. YSU will coordinate with the Ohio Department of Higher Education to advise Eastern Gateway students on the best pathway to continue their education when that pathway involves collaborating with community colleges.

All involved colleges will work to honor credits earned by students and help students through the transfer process.

Eastern Gateway has recently been subject to a process known as heightened cash monitoring through the U.S. Department of Education. This has delayed typical flows of federal funding to the college, creating diminished cash flow. Due to the uncertainty of funding beyond this semester, Eastern Gateway made the decision to pause student registration until this process is resolved.

Students who are on track to graduate at the end of the semester will not be impacted by the pause. Enrolled students who aren’t scheduled to graduate at the end of the semester will need to register for classes in the summer semester or fall semester through another college.

The Ohio Department of Higher Education will coordinate with the Higher Learning Commission, the U.S. Department of Education, and other academic and regulatory bodies as necessary on the implementation of the arrangement, with planned approval for YSU to offer in-person classes in Steubenville for the benefit of Jefferson County. The Ohio Department of Higher Education has established a webpage and dedicated email address to answer questions posed by students, faculty and staff at highered.ohio.gov/egccinfo.

The Ohio Department of Higher Education has established an Eastern Gateway informational webpage dedicated to providing real-time updates and resources at highered.ohio.gov/egccinfo. Students, faculty and staff can also email egccinfo@highered.ohio.gov, where department staff will coordinate answers to questions depending on the nature of the inquiry.

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