Release Date: Wednesday, August 13, 2014
CHARLESTON, W.VA. – To resolve numerous lawsuits against Mountain State University (MSU) by former MSU students (plaintiffs) without further protracted litigation, MSU and the plaintiffs have agreed to a proposed settlement of these lawsuits and related matters. The settlement is based on a pool of funds created from MSU’s assets, insurance and other sources.
The regional campuses of the University of Charleston (UC) in Beckley and Martinsburg, W.Va., have been located on real estate owned by MSU and leased to UC since 2013. To provide settlement funds for the plaintiffs, MSU has agreed to sell its real estate and the majority of the contents in the buildings. UC will not be able to remain on this real estate and operate its regional campuses at MSU facilities beyond the 2014-15 academic year. UC therefore must restructure its academic program offerings.
“UC understands the need for the settlement and supports it,” said UC President Dr. Ed Welch. “UC will continue to offer all but our culinary arts programs at the UC-Beckley campus this year, and we will work with community leaders to identify another location in Beckley to offer needed programs after this coming academic year.”
In Martinsburg, UC will move its esteemed leadership programs to National Guard facilities.
“On behalf of Mountain State University's former students, we are pleased that the parties were able to propose a settlement in this case,” said Anthony J. Majestro, liaison counsel for the plaintiffs.
“Mountain State University has agreed to commit all of its assets to the proposed settlement,” Majestro said. “The settlement, which must be approved by the court, will finally end the litigation and allow the students to receive some compensation for their losses.”
This proposed settlement releases MSU from any further litigation from former MSU students, and MSU admits no wrongdoing as part of the agreement.
If the proposed settlement receives preliminary approval from the court, the terms of the settlement will be provided to the affected parties, a hearing will be scheduled and all affected parties will be given an opportunity to be heard on the matter. Final approval of the settlement would come at a later date after the process is completed.