Green Mountain College Green Mountain College

The announcement last month that Green Mountain College in Poultney, Vermont, will shut down after the spring semester has left the school’s undergraduates scrambling to figure out what’s next for them.

Two Maine schools, Unity College in Unity and the College of the Atlantic in Bar Harbor, are trying to help. They are among seven colleges around the country that are offering special transfer opportunities to students from Green Mountain College, a small private college focused on environmental liberal arts.

A team from College of the Atlantic also went to Vermont last week to meet with students. President Darron Collins said Thursday that it is “horrible” to see a small college close.

“It’s very tough on the students, alumni, staff, faculty and the community,” he said. “And within the higher-education landscape we want to see our competitors thrive and prosper, not go out of business. So it’s a hard day when something like this happens.”

Collins said that the College of the Atlantic also is in a good position, with a robust endowment and strong philanthropic support for a college of its size, and with enrollment steadily climbing over the past decade toward the school’s 350-student cap. The school also is preparing to begin construction on its first major academic facility since the 1980s.

“We feel very good about our future,” he said. “And [about] our ability to weather the challenging demographic trends and shifting attitudes toward higher ed.”

Read More