Exciting Update about Woodbury University!

Dear University Community,

It gives me great pleasure to share that today, six months after announcing our intention to explore a partnership with Woodbury University, we have finalized our change-in-control agreement. This marks the beginning of a transformative chapter for both of our historic institutions and is a monumental milestone driven by our shared vision for the future.

When we began exploring this merger, we did so with our institutional eye firmly focused on whether a merger would be in the best interest of our students and their academic and co-curricular experiences. For over a century, both Redlands and Woodbury have been dedicated to providing a personalized, outstanding education to our students. For this merger to work, we knew that delivering on our continued commitment to our students was our very highest priority.

What we have seen during our months of exploration is just how aligned our institutions are in culture and approach. We share many of the same values. I have heard from dozens of you that you have experienced this on your visits to Woodbury’s campus and when you met their faculty, staff, and students in Redlands a few months ago. What we heard from you through surveys, town hall meetings, and in many other ways was that these similarities motivated you to consider new possibilities.

Where Redlands and Woodbury are different is also exciting. Woodbury’s Burbank campus is in the heart of LA’s vibrant film, entertainment, and fashion districts, allowing that campus to forge connections with some of the most creative people and spaces in the world. Woodbury’s academic programs and internship opportunities reflect this, providing new possibilities for our entire Redlands community of students, faculty, staff, and alumni. We are thrilled by the potential. At a time when colleges and universities are facing significant challenges in higher education, the importance of distinguishing ourselves through our academic and other programmatic offerings cannot be overstated.

While the change in control is now complete, that does not mean that the work is behind us. Indeed, in many ways, it is only just the beginning. Full integration of our institutions will not occur until the U.S. Department of Education approves this merger – a process that will take time. During this period, there will be countless opportunities for you to be involved in envisioning how we can maximize this merger to provide an unparalleled educational experience to our students. I look forward to this important work. While I cannot promise that it will be easy or always seamless, and in fact, I can almost guarantee the opposite, I know that together, we will dream up possibilities that will set Redlands on a course to thrive long into the future. Forward Together, as our strategic plan so aptly says.

In closing, I want to thank you for your dedication and support for the University of Redlands. Your important questions, collaboration, and hard work throughout this process have gotten us to this threshold. Our future is brighter than ever, and I know we will continue to achieve new heights.

With gratitude and excitement for what lies ahead,

Krista L. Newkirk