Virginia State University Learns of Enrollment Decline

ETTRICK, Va. — Virginia State University has seen another sharp decline in enrollment and with it, the revenue the students would bring to the campus.

As a result, interim President Pamela V. Hammond will have to make up a loss of between $2.1 million and $3.4 million, according to The Richmond Times-Dispatch.

Meeting last week, the school’s board of visitors learned that spring enrollment could be short between 379 and 629 students. The exact number should be known by the end of this week.

Hammond succeeded Keith T. Miller on Jan. 1 amid declining enrollment and budget woes, a scenario many other historically Black colleges and universities are facing. Hammond has frozen hiring, restricted spending and has considered furloughs.

“If you’re in the hole, you’ve got to stop digging,” said Hammond, who is leading the university while a national search for a permanent successor continues. “If you don’t have any money, you’ve got to stop spending.”

VSU’s enrollment for the fall semester was 5,025, including part-time and online students.

David Meadows, vice president for administration and finance, said the university in the fall made $18.2 million in budget reductions for the academic year because of previous revenue shortfalls.