JACKSON, Tenn. (AP) — The University of Memphis has officially taken ownership of the Lambuth campus and a flag-raising ceremony is scheduled for next month.
The Jackson Sun reports local officials registered the deed to the property on Tuesday, closing a purchase agreement in the works for more than a year (http://bit.ly/sIibfM).
Part of the campus is being leased by the state and is a satellite location of the University of Memphis.
The city of Jackson, Madison County, West Tennessee Healthcare and Jackson Energy Authority signed their rights to the campus over to the state of Tennessee on Monday after paying about $2 million each to fund the $7.9 million purchase of property.
Sheri Lipman, counsel for the University of Memphis, said officials have been reviewing and signing documents in the sale over the past couple of months. Those documents were recorded Tuesday, making the purchase official.
“This solidifies our place in the Jackson community and allows us to move forward even more completely,” Lipman said.
The 168-year-old Lambuth University closed in June after years of financial trouble and the loss of its academic accreditation.
Madison County Mayor Jimmy Harris said having a four-year state university will give the county better ability to recruit new industry, bringing more tax money and activity to West Tennessee.
“I think it will be something that our community reaps the benefits of for many, many years to come,” Harris said.
An official University of Memphis at Lambuth flag-raising ceremony has been scheduled for Jan. 12.
The university opened for classes this fall with more than 300 students, and registration is under way for the spring semester.
Last month, the university announced it will add eight new degree programs for the spring, including bachelor’s degrees in English, communications, criminal justice, psychology, public relations, social work, accounting and entertainment music industries.
In the fall of 2012, undergraduate degrees in biology/pre-med and nursing will be added.