This audio is auto-generated. Please let us know if you have feedback.

Dive Brief:

  • A foundation that invests in Christian K-12 education has purchased the campus of Cardinal Stritch University — a Wisconsin Catholic institution that closed in May — for $24 million.
  • The Ramirez Family Foundation said in a statement last week that it hadn’t decided precisely how to use the roughly 43-acre property, but news reports suggest the organization will convert it into a Christian secondary school.
  • One of the foundation’s most recent projects was an expansion of a private K-12 school in Milwaukee, St. Augustine Preparatory Academy, which raised its capacity to 2,400 students. 

Dive Insight:

Cardinal Stritch fell victim to many of the financial stressors that caused other colleges to shut their doors recently, including downward enrollment trends and economic fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic.

It announced its closure in April and said it would wind down operations at the end of the academic year a month later.

Cardinal Stritch enrolled 1,365 students in fall 2021, according to the most recently available federal data. Enrollment had tumbled severely, as the university had 5,159 students in fall 2011.

Its campus in the Milwaukee area has 12 buildings that total about 607,000 square feet, according to the Ramirez Family Foundation. It went on sale a couple of months ago, and the university sought to close a deal by the end of the year.

“This is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to acquire a unique property that will, in time, provide the Ramirez Family Foundation with a platform to make an even larger impact,” Gus Ramirez and Becky Ramirez, co-chairs of the foundation, said in a statement. “When the Cardinal Stritch campus first became available, we moved quickly to reach a purchase agreement.”