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Detroit Institute of Music Education abruptly closes amid dispute with Colorado university

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The Detroit Institute of Music Education (DIME) announced this week it is closing, six years after launching an unconventional, innovative curriculum focused on contemporary music.…
The Detroit Institute of Music Education (DIME) announced this week it is closing, six years after launching an unconventional, innovative curriculum focused on contemporary music.
In a letter emailed Monday to students, DIME executives announced the immediate closure of the school’s programs in Detroit and Colorado, citing the fracturing of a partnership with Metropolitan State University of Denver (MSU Denver) that began in 2015.
That arrangement formally accredited the DIME curriculum, allowing students to receive four-year bachelor’s degrees under the MSU Denver banner and pursue financial aid as needed.
Kevin Nixon and Sarah Clayman, the English husband-wife team who opened DIME in 2014 after operating a network of similar music colleges in the U. K., said in a statement that they “have not given up hope that we can reinvent DIME in Detroit, and work with other local organizations to continue music education in the city we have lived in for the past six years and have grown to love.”
Speaking Wednesday to the Free Press, Nixon said that could plausibly include a new partnership with a Detroit-area university.
“We can fix this problem,” he said.
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This week’s announcement followed a nine-week legal scramble, complicated by the COVID-19 pandemic, to give DIME “a managed exit” from its MSU Denver deal, Nixon said, including a teach-out arrangement for existing students.
An MSU Denver executive, meanwhile, said missed enrollment targets and low tuition revenue prompted the Colorado university to end the partnership.
Nixon and Clayman opened DIME in Detroit’s Capitol Park in 2014 amid the downtown Detroit revival.

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