Boston University and Wheelock College have reached an agreement on a merger that will result in a new school of education, the universities announced on Wednesday.
The new college will be called BU’s Wheelock College of Education and Human Development and will be a combination of BU’s School of Education and Wheelock’s School of Education, Child Life and Family Studies. The new facility will bring together BU’s “doctoral programs and research capabilities” and Wheelock’s “early childhood expertise,” BU announced.
“We believe that BU’s Wheelock College of Education & Human Development will be one of the leading colleges of education in the country, with its focus on clinical practice, scholarship, and community engagement,” BU President Robert A. Brown said in a letter to the school community on Wednesday. “The commitment to establish and support this new college will, I believe, appropriately preserve and enhance the great legacy of Wheelock College.”
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The schools will merge on June 1, 2018 and the move will give BU ownership over all assets and liabilities of Wheelock College.
The Fenway-based Wheelock, which was founded in 1888 and specializes in educating future teachers and social workers, has been struggling financially, according to reports. The new school will continue to reflect Wheelock’s original mission “to improve the lives of children and their families,” the college assures.
“I believe this merger is our strongest option for preserving the mission of Wheelock College and the legacy of Lucy Wheelock long into the future, and I am pleased that we have reached this milestone," Wheelock President David Chard said in a statement. "President Brown and I have discussed our intent to support Wheelock students and alumni during this transition and welcome them as part of the Boston University community. Moreover, we both want to create a college of which our entire community can be proud."
BU will recognize the tuition rates and financial aid packages of current Wheelock students, who will be become members of the BU community. Though they will not pay BU tuition rates, Wheelock students’ tuition will still be subject to annual inflation.
Chard will become the interim dean of the Wheelock College of Education and Human Development for at least two years after the merger.