International Christian College to cease current operations and undertake review for future

International Christian College in Glasgow has decided to cease its current educational operations in a managed way over the next academic year. There will be no further new student intakes, and we will help our current students to transfer to other institutions where possible, as well as providing one final year of teaching for some students in order to help them to complete their studies. Most of our staff will be made redundant in the summer of 2014, and a small staff will be retained for one further year to complete the above teaching programme.

The college has suffered prolonged and substantial falls in new student intakes since 2007, and the attempts to cut costs in light of this and to reverse these falls have proven unsuccessful. In 2013 we made significant staff cuts and sold our building in order to balance our finances and to release working capital in order to turn around the college’s situation. Despite an extensive search, we have not been able to find suitable and affordable new premises. The smaller premises that were affordable and available would not have left the college with enough financial capital to sustain and grow its income to the levels required for its long-term sustainability. It would be unfair in these circumstances to allow new students to begin their studies with us if there were real doubts that the college might not be around long enough for them to complete them.

In the light of this, the college’s Board of Directors consider that the right course of action is to cease our educational programmes and work on a managed transition or exit for our current students. We will move into a small suite of offices, classroom and library facilities for one final year of teaching.

We will also begin a process of reflection, listening, prayer and discernment before deciding how the college’s remaining financial and library assets should be used. We do not believe that this is the end of the college’s ministry, but that it may take a different form in future. In these deeply troubling circumstances and amid difficult decisions, we take comfort in the words of Jesus Christ, “Very truly I tell you, unless a grain of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds” (John 12:24). None of us know what the future holds not only for our own lives, but also for the future of equipping people for Christian ministry in Scotland today. But although we don't understand how at the moment, ceasing our current educational programmes will, we trust, lead to new opportunities and new life in the future.

Richard Tiplady
Principal, International Christian College
20th February 2014