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UWO Fox Cities Board of Trustees weighing options, planning for future post-shutdown

Parent university system UW Oshkosh announced that they would be discontinuing in-person learning at the campus in June 2025.
Posted at 6:10 PM, Jun 24, 2024

MENASHA (NBC 26) — This comes two weeks after university system University of Wisconsin Oshkosh announced that they would be discontinuing in-person learning at the campus in June 2025.

  • UWO Fox Cities' Board of Trustees convened to discuss options for the future
  • The meeting was adjourned with more questions than answers

(The following is a transcription of the full broadcast story, with additional details for the web)

Instruction will end at the Fox Cities campus in June next year.

UW Oshkosh says with enrollment dropping, it has to close.

The satellite campus board, met Monday, with many things left to sort out, from the future use of buildings, to the elimination of jobs, and the future of current students.

Winnebago County Executive Jon Doemel suggested starting from the top.

"We've got a lot to figure out, we've got a lot to go through, we have to figure out what's what, who owns what."

Meanwhile, Outagamie County Executive Tom Nelson questioned whether the county should remain a partner to the parent school.

"Do we sever our relationship to UW Oshkosh now? Or in the future?"

The use of specific buildings was also addressed, including the Weis Earth Science Museum and the Barlow Planetarium.

"Obviously I hope that we are going to be able to keep running," says Barlow Planetarium Director Teri Gee. "We're going to plan on doing what we've been doing in the past all the way through until the ending day next year and then beyond…we hope we can keep on doing that."

Community members joined board members in the discussion too. Lisa Ott says she attended UWO Fox Cities and had hoped her kids could go there too, earning credits before going to a four-year school.

"I had hoped that they could attend here after and get their start and save money by living at home."

Ott then took a moment to reflect on what the college means to her.

"I mean, it's such a gem and once we lose this, we'll never be able to get it back."

The board says their next meeting to discuss options will be on July 29th and will also be open to the public.