S&P Global increases Sweet Briar’s bond rating

campus of Sweet Briar College
campus of Sweet Briar College

Posted on May 03, 2024

The financial health of Sweet Briar College continues to be recognized by S&P Global, which has raised the institution’s long-term rating from “BB” to “BB+.” S&P also noted that Sweet Briar’s outlook is stable.

This is the seventh time in nine years that S&P has either raised or reaffirmed Sweet Briar’s bond rating. Twice during that term, the agency has raised the College’s outlook.

Sweet Briar’s continued enrollment growth was an important factor in the rating. S&P noted, “Enrollment and selectivity have improved during the past two years with further improvement anticipated in the coming 2024-2025 school year and we view management and governance as providing sufficient oversight of school operations such that if unexpected developments occur the college can quickly pivot and stay on course.”

“Fiscal responsibility is a top priority at Sweet Briar, and we appreciate that our efforts have been acknowledged once again by S&P Global,” stated President Mary Pope M. Hutson. “Financial health is critical to Sweet Briar’s long-term success. It allows us to provide an innovative and supportive learning environment for our students that prepares them for leadership, and it enables us to protect and conserve our college’s historic campus for future generations. We continue to work hard to increase the profile of Sweet Briar College and to enroll the best and brightest young women from across the country.”

S&P is also encouraged by Sweet Briar’s management, which “continues to make incremental progress in restoring the college’s luster,” its commitment to cyber security, its low debt with relatively short remaining amortization, and its overall financial operations.

Sweet Briar continues to be grateful for the investments of time and resources from so many to strengthen our institution into our second century.