The board of regents of the University System of Georgia has approved the merger of Darton State College with historically Black Albany State University. The new entity will retain the name of Albany State University.
Darton State College enrolls about 5,600 students, mostly in two-year, associate’s degree programs. Blacks make up 45 percent of the student body. More than 70 percent of the students are women.
Albany State University enrolls about 3,300 graduates and 600 graduate students. The university has faced significant drops in enrollment in recent years which have produced significant pressures on the university’s financial health. Recently, the university announced that it would “deactivate” 10 academic programs (See earlier JBHE post).
Arthur Dunning, interim president of Albany State University, has been selected as president of the new merged institution. Dr. Dunning was chosen as interim president in December 2013. Earlier, he was a professor and senior research fellow at the Education Policy Center of the University of Alabama at Tuscaloosa. Prior to joining the faculty at the University of Alabama, he served for 27 years in the University System of Georgia and was a faculty member at Kennesaw State University. Dr. Dunning holds bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees from the University of Alabama.