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Marion community reacts to closing of Judson College

Reaction to Judson College closure
Reaction to Judson College closure(WSFA 12 News)
Updated: May. 9, 2021 at 2:22 PM CDT
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MARION, Ala. (WSFA) - Many of the residents of Marion were shocked and saddened to hear that Judson College will close its doors permanently this summer.

The decision was made by the school’s board of trustees Thursday and comes after efforts with donors and the community to keep the school open long term failed.

Residents say the college benefited the city economy and the students impacted the community.

“Judson has been a pillar of the community for so many years,” Lottie’s restaurant owner, Byron Turner, said. “When we first opened, my first waitress I hired were from Judson College.”

“They have a weekend program where they get the kids in the community and they take them away for a couple of hours on Saturday and do things with them,” said Crab Box owner Betty Cadore. “For me that’s big because we have no program for youth here.”

President of the college, Mark Tew, says the process has begun of finding current students at the college new institutions to attend.

“I’ve already received a dozens calls today from presidents of institutions offering their assistance in this process to prepare an easy process for our students,” Tew said.

This leaves the buildings on the campus empty, something that residents in Marion do not want.

They’re hoping possibly another school will take new residence there.

“If it’s just teleschools or anything like that, help out the community,” Turner said.

For now, they wait but they say the impact Judson College has made on this city will last forever.

The college has not filed for bankruptcy but is prepared to do so if necessary.

Tew says they have a good relationship with their creditors who are helping them move forward.

The educational program is expected to end on July 31.

Copyright 2021 WSFA 12 News. All rights reserved.

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