Martin University needs cash

January 26, 2009
Martin University needs to raise $1.26 million to restore its campus from December flooding caused by a burst pipe, according to a copy of a needs proposal the university has prepared to share with potential donors.

That money would be in addition to $1 million the predominantly black school was already trying to raise in order to shore up its fragile finances.

The members of Martin's board of directors, as well as President Algeania Freeman, intend to ask foundations and grant-makers, both locally and nationally, to give to the reconstruction effort. They also will reach out to alumni and individuals in the Indianapolis community.

Their pitch will emphasize Martin's mission, which is to educate low-income adults.

The water damage occurred Dec. 22 when a pipe in the school's sprinkler system burst, dumping 50,000 gallons of water into Martin's main building.

Total damages topped $3.2 million, which is nearly half of Martin's annual budget. Insurance policies will pay for about 60 percent of those costs.

Martin has been trying to build up resources and improve its technology infrastructure in order to comply with demands of its accrediting body, the Higher Learning Commission. Without accreditation, Martin's students cannot receive federal loans and grants to cover tuition.

Martin faces another accreditation evaluation in 2010.
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