Clark State gets strong financial rating that allows lower borrowing, interest rates

Clark State has been received a strong financial rating from a national firm that allows the college to have lower borrowing and interest rates to serve students.

Moody’s Investors Service has assigned an A2 rating, which indicates the college’s financial outlook is stable, and that they are “committed to preparing students for the future while addressing the region’s educational and workforce needs.” The college has had a rating of A2 for the past five years.

“This is one reason Clark State is able to be so affordable for students,” said President Jo Alice Blondin. “With one of the lowest tuition rates in the state, the Board of Trustees’ attention to fiscal oversight and wide array of financial aid and scholarship programs, students can save tens of thousands of dollars earning their bachelor’s or associate degree, or enrolling for two years and transferring to one of the more than 30 colleges with which we have transfer partnerships.”

The rating, which is based on several factors including tax base and financial reserves, compares to a credit score because the higher the rating, the better the financial position. This means lower borrowing rates, lower interest rates for loans and paying off debts more quickly, which also helps keep tuition low for students.

Doug Schantz, executive vice president of finance, facilities and operations, said this rating is reflective of the college’s “good strategic positioning, strong academy offerings and solid finances, including healthy operating performance.”

In the report, Moody’s pointed out the college’s “solid position” as a key provider of education and workforce development in the Springfield region. It cites their hands-on learning experiences including the partnership with the City of Springfield that integrates the college’s Fire Academy into an active fire station in Springfield, their partnership and developing curriculum to support the air mobility industry, and the environmental initiatives including a reduction in its operational footprint by implementing LED lighting in many campus buildings and upgrading to more efficient HVAC systems.

“Clark State is a critical provider of College Credit Plus opportunities for high school students in the state ... Their continued adaptation to market needs, especially in health sciences, will aid in sustaining its solid regional brand. Unique partnerships and programmatic offerings characterize Clark State,” the report stated. “Clark State College remains a vital institution in Western Ohio. The college’s strategic initiatives and adaptive strategies position it well for ongoing success and regional impact.”

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