OMAHA – Grace University’s move from it’s Omaha campus to the former Dana Campus in Blair appears “unlikely” after officials from the university announced the 75-year-old school will close at the end of the academic year.
Grace University officials informed staff and students yesterday of the school’s closing after the 2017-2018 academic year. Blair’s City Administrator Rod Storm says the announcement is a setback for the community.
“From a city standpoint, all we can continue to do is work with the developer to hopefully find something else that will fit the use of the campus. The disappointing thing from our standpoint is that Grace University was a utopia for the community,” said Storm. “It was bringing a lot of young, bright students back to our community. And that’s what we miss from the years we had with Dana. So from that standpoint it was very disappointing. Back at square one. We’ll continue to work with them so that the developers hopefully get something that will fit the community and help us move forward.”
Officials say a decline in student enrollment is cited as a reason for closing down the university. Blair City officials say they are disappointed, but will continue to work with developer Ed Shada toward a productive use of the vacant campus. An update by Shada on the status of the former Dana Campus is expected this weekend during the annual Dana Alumni Homecoming.