Marymount California University to Permanently Close

RANCHO PALOS VERDES, Calif.—April 22, 2022—The board of trustees at Marymount California University in Rancho Palos Verdes has voted to permanently close the university on Aug. 31, 2022.

Like other small, tuition-dependent schools, MCU has struggled financially in recent years in the face of declining enrollment, rising costs and a pandemic, which university leaders acknowledged put them in a position of not having the resources needed to support the institution’s operational expenses.

The board deliberated other possible options that could provide the critical financial support needed to keep the university up and running, but ultimately deemed these alternatives and their associated timeframes unworkable.

“This is an extremely sad day for Marymount and for the legacy and traditions lost, both for our campus community and the local Palos Verdes area we have called home for more than 50 years,” said Brian Marcotte, MCU president. “This decision was not made lightly. But we felt the most compassionate thing to do was to give everyone time to make plans. Our focus now will be to help our students, faculty and staff.”

Classes for MCU students will conclude with the end of the summer term in August. No new students will be admitted for the fall semester. In the coming weeks, MCU will work to transition students to other colleges and universities for the fall semester, in cooperation with its regulators.

The university enrolls 500 full-time students and employs 140 full-time staff. Following the closure, MCU anticipates employing only a very small number of individuals to manage the wind-down of the school. In the interim, the university hopes to assist its faculty and staff with identifying new opportunities.

The Religious of the Sacred Heart of Mary established Marymount Palos Verdes College in 1968 as a two-year Catholic junior college. In 2013, the name changed from Marymount College, Palos Verdes to Marymount California University to reflect its expansion to a multi-campus institution of higher learning, offering both four-year undergraduate degrees, as well as graduate degree programs. Ranked among the top liberal arts schools in the nation by U.S. News & World Report, MCU is a College of Distinction and ranks #2 in California for safest campus (Niche).