As NDNU in Belmont scales back operations while considering closing for good, Menlo College in Atherton is offering a “seamless opportunity” for current or prospective NDNU students to transfer. 

“Menlo College extends our sympathy to all of the students, faculty, staff and alumni at Notre Dame de Namur University during this time of transition,” college officials said in a statement. “Menlo College has created a seamless opportunity for NDNU students to transfer to Menlo.” 

According to the statement, Menlo College will guarantee admissions and on-campus housing for all current NDNU students in good academic standing, accept all credits earned at NDNU and also match all NDNU financial aid packages. The statement added that California residents may be eligible to obtain funding to cover 100% of Menlo’s tuition fees.

The offer addresses widespread concerns among NDNU underclassmen. Many NDNU underclassmen have been worried they won’t be able to secure financial aid elsewhere and that only a fraction of their credits will be accepted at other schools. Credits for certain courses, including ones on the history of NDNU for example, are seldom accepted at other schools, students say. Because of that, many have been worried they’ll have to repeat a year at whatever school they attend next, thereby delaying graduation and increasing tuition costs. For students interested in transferring to Menlo, those concerns ostensibly will not become a reality. 

The two schools are the only four-year universities in San Mateo County. Founded in 1851, NDNU is the third oldest educational institution in California while Menlo was founded in 1927. 

NDNU is struggling due to ongoing enrollment and financial issues, and officials since the fall of 2019 have openly considered shuttering the university. In late March, the university announced it would remain open through at least the spring semester of 2021, but would begin scaling back operations, discontinue the entire athletics program after the spring semester of this year and also help current students transfer elsewhere.

While NDNU struggles with enrollment, Menlo last autumn experienced a record-breaking enrollment with a 35% increase in new students, according to the statement. 

“Menlo College’s expectations and hopes for its future and the future of its current students remain bright,” the statement reads. “For over 93 years, students have flourished in experiencing Menlo’s business and psychology programs, with small classroom settings, world-class athletics, an award-winning internship program, and a student body that is diverse in every way.

“Menlo College looks forward to continuing strong this coming August, and encourages students at NDNU to consider how Menlo can support them through this unprecedented time,” the statement concludes.

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