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Bennett College Still $2 Million Short Of Money Needed To Restore Accreditation

Bennett College

The donations to Bennett College in Greensboro continue to pour in from across the country as officials at the private, historically black all-women’s college work to meet a $5 million fundraising goal by Feb. 1.  School officials say they need the money to convince their accrediting agency that the college is financially sound.

School officials say they had raised more than $3 million dollars as of Monday morning. Bennett President Phyllis Dawkins has said she is confident they will reach their goal.

Last week, the Winston-Salem-based Z. Reynolds Foundation and Papa John's each gave the school  $500,000 grants. School officials say they are waiting to hear from other major potential donors who are been approached for contributions.

Related Content: Bennett College Officials Get Major Donations To Help In Accreditation Effort

If the fundraising campaign is successful, school officials say they will be in better standing with their accrediting agency, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, or SACS. On Feb. 18 they will get a chance to appeal the loss of their accreditation.

Bennett’s accreditation was revoked last month over concerns about the school’s long-term financial stability and ability to raise funds. SACS Chief of Staff Larry Earvin has said any increase in financial resources the school can show during the appeal hearing will be a positive for Bennett and put them in a better light with the appeals' committee, elected by SACS.

Bennett ran budget deficits for seven of the last 11 years. It currently has a surplus of more than $400,000. 

The school remains accredited during the appeals process. Dawkins said Bennett will file a lawsuit if they are not successful in their appeal. In the meantime, they are also seeking accreditation from a national accrediting agency for Christian colleges, such as Bennett.

Gwendolyn is an award-winning journalist who has covered a broad range of stories on the local and national levels. Her experience includes producing on-air reports for National Public Radio and she worked full-time as a producer for NPR’s All Things Considered news program for five years. She worked for several years as an on-air contract reporter for CNN in Atlanta and worked in print as a reporter for the Baltimore Sun Media Group, The Washington Post and covered Congress and various federal agencies for the Daily Environment Report and Real Estate Finance Today. Glenn has won awards for her reports from the Maryland-DC-Delaware Press Association, SNA and the first-place radio award from the National Association of Black Journalists.