Judge Rules in Tulane's Favor; Women's College to Stay Closed

A descendant of the founder of Tulane women's college sued the university to reopen the school.

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After Hurricane Katrina ravaged New Orleans and shuttered Tulane University for a semester in the fall of 2005, Tulane used the following summer to start reconstructing its campus and restructuring operations. To cut costs, the university opted to close Newcomb College, Tulane's women's college.

The college's closing prompted a three-year legal battle that ended Monday, the New Orleans Times-Picayune reports. The plaintiff, the great-great-great niece of Josephine Louis Newcomb, the founder of Newcomb College, argued that Tulane had violated the terms of Newcomb's will by folding the women's college. Tulane argued that while Newcomb had left her entire estate to Tulane, she did not list a requirement to keep Newcomb College open. The judge agreed with Tulane.

In a three-page opinion, Civil District Judge Rosemary Ledet ruled that the wording of Newcomb's will "contains no enforceable conditional obligation to support the plaintiff's claim."

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