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Chancellor Plans to Recommend Consolidation

Special to the Metro

History is about to be made in Albany and Southwest Georgia and I am excited to share the news with you, Interim ASU President Art Dunning, told ASU Alumni in a press release that went out Friday.

Dunning wrote "At the November 10 meeting of the Board of Regents, Chancellor Hank Huckaby is expected to recommend the consolidation of Albany State University and Darton State College."   The name of the newly consolidated institution would be Albany State University, which would continue to serve the HBCU mission and build on that mission to serve an increasingly diverse student population and community. 

The consolidation would provide easier access to a wider range of academic offerings, particularly for Darton State College students wanting to take advantage of upper division courses and degrees beyond the associate’s degree.  Dunning said the consolidation would make the schools better able to direct more resources to instruction and thus improve student success for all students, reduce administrative costs, eliminate duplication of effort, and allow for increased faculty collaboration for research and innovation. The creation of one higher education entity in Albany would enable us to leverage more resources for economic development and promote increased community engagement.

“We, at Albany State University, have an opportunity to be a part of transformational change and by working cooperatively with our colleagues at Darton State College,
create a university that anticipates and responds efficiently and effectively to the academic needs of students, preparing them to become responsible citizens,”  Dunning said.

Dunning said if the Regents approves the consolidation recommendation, the two institutions would form a joint consolidation steering committee; create a joint consolidation website to provide updates to the faculty, staff and students at both institutions; and form joint working teams of professionals in various functional areas to begin working through the process. 

Our colleagues at the University System of Georgia would guide this process. They have been involved in five consolidations across Georgia, in recent years. The consolidation of Georgia State University and Georgia Perimeter College is currently underway. The consolidation of Albany State University and Darton State College would be the first proposed in Southwest Georgia and the first involving an HBCU.

If the consolidation is approved, we will be extremely busy in the coming months. We, at Albany State University, look forward to working with our colleagues at Darton State College on this effort. I will keep you informed as we move forward.