Several months ago we learned that Marygrove College in Detroit would become devoted exclusively to graduate degrees.
But as the school has lost enrollment and money, the larger question has emerged, what becomes of a historic campus and its many beautiful buildings and its commitment to its neighborhood and Detroit, if the lights go out?
Fortunately, in the case of Marygrove, that question won’t need to be answered right now, in part because of the Kresge Foundation. Kresge supplied funding for the school in some of its darkest moments, and sees the school’s future as key to the foundation’s project that aims to boost the quality of life in nearby neighborhoods.
Kresge president Rip Rapson tells Detroit Today host Stephen Henderson the foundation felt it necessary to step in and help Marygrove, and thereby the surrounding neighborhood, which has been in decline over the past several decades.
“It was too important, in part because of this city’s legacy… to turn our back,” says Rapson. ”It just became clear that for us to stand by and watch an institution of this importance to the community not succeed was just not an option.”
“There was every reason to believe that as Marygrove goes, so goes the neighborhood.”
To hear more from Rapson, and Marygrove president Dr. Elizabeth Burns on Detroit Today, click on the audio player above.