President Martin acknowledges decision by Dodge City trustees to end merger talks with FHSU

After returning from Redmond, Wash., where she supported a team of Fort Hays State University students who finished second in the national Be U Hackathon competition at the corporate headquarters of Microsoft, President Mirta M. Martin issued a statement today about the proposed merger between FHSU and Dodge City Community College.

"Fort Hays State University was prepared to continue the exploration of the merger, as approved twice by the Dodge City Community College Board of Trustees and as endorsed by the Kansas Board of Regents," the president said. "That was the only initiative we believed would be beneficial to both FHSU and the community college. FHSU has always maintained that the decision to proceed or not to proceed with the merger was the responsibility of the Dodge City trustees. FHSU was ready to go forward; however, the Dodge City trustees changed their minds and do not wish to explore the merger. That is their decision, and FHSU will honor that decision."

The statement from President Martin comes after a meeting of the Dodge City trustees last week in which action to continue the merger process under a counter proposal failed on a 3-3 vote. Prior to that meeting in Dodge City, the state Board of Regents had removed its request for state funding for the merger in its legislative package, pending a show of unity and affirmation by the Dodge City trustees.

"We wish Dodge City Community College and the people of southwest Kansas all the best and will continue to do everything we can to provide for any educational needs the community college cannot provide," President Martin said this morning. "There are existing partnerships between Fort Hays State and all the community colleges in southwest Kansas that have enhanced educational opportunities in that part of the state, and we expect those cooperative efforts to remain strong into the future."

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