Trustees at a small, 143-year-old women's college in central Pennsylvania have approved a plan that will convert the school to a fully coeducational institution, officials said Sunday.
Wilson College officials said the liberal arts school in Chambersburg would begin enrolling male students without an age restriction as commuter students in the fall of this year, and in fall 2014 will admit male residential students. Wilson currently allows men to be commuter students if they are children of staff or at least 22 years old. About 11.7 percent of students are male.
The college is about 55 miles southwest of Harrisburg and was founded in 1869.
In addition to expanding coeducation across all programs, the college plans to reduce tuition, set up a student loan buyback program, add new academic programs — a number of them in health sciences — and improve facilities.
"All of the measures together are aimed at significantly increasing our enrollment — that's the Number 1 goal," said college president Barbara Mistick, who declined to reveal the exact vote by the 28 trustees but said it was over the required two-thirds majority.
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