Columbia College has reached a deal with the Department of Education to buy the YouZeum building.
President Gerald Brouder announced today that the federal agency approved Columbia College’s plan to use the building to house its growing online and nursing education centers.
The YouZeum has struggled financially since moving into the building two years ago. The interactive health science museum reduced its hours and its board tried unsuccessfully to sell the building to the Columbia Public Schools for $900,000.
Federal rules require that the 30,000 square-foot building at 608 E. Cherry Street be used for educational purposes approved by the Education Department, which has a use lien on the former post office. The private college will move its online and nursing education centers into the building and plans to start operations there by next August.
Bob Hutton, the head of administrative services at Columbia College, declined to reveal the transaction price, but said it was more than the YouZeum’s secured debt and less than its unsecured debt. YouZeum board members declined to specify the organization’s debt.