OAKLAND, Calif. (KRON) — After 154 years, Holy Names University in Oakland will close its doors following the spring 2023 semester, the school announced Monday. HNU cited declining enrollment, COVID-19 and an economic downturn as reasons why it is forced to shut down.

The school said it worked hard to find ways to stay open but did not have the financial resources to do so. It will cancel its sports programs at the end of the spring semester and give layoff notices to 32 employees in January or Fenruary.

“We have been doing our best to find a partner to keep the university functioning and continue HNU’s mission,” said HNU Board Chairperson Steven Borg. “While we’ve had interest in long-term collaboration from potential partners, we do not have the type of interest that would sustain HNU in continuing to offer its own programs and services, so we are forced to make the difficult decision to close and designate a transfer institution in the best interest of our students.”

In the fall semester, HNU had 520 undergraduates and 423 graduate students enrolled. For the spring semester, there are just 449 total students enrolled. The school said students struggling to make tuition payments and uncertainty about the school’s future are why enrollment is declining.

“Increasingly college costs have become a challenge for many students and their families.  HNU, which extends significant institutional aid, is dependent upon tuition and residence hall revenue,” Borg said.

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Active HNU students will have the option to transfer to Dominican University of California to continue their studies, HNU said. Dominican is located in San Rafael. Students on track to finish their degrees by the end of the spring semester can graduate from HNU.

Students will have the ability to finish their degree on schedule at Dominican. Faculty members will also be “considered” for similar roles at Dominican.