OAKDALE - The president of Dowling College gave students hope Thursday that their school will remain open permanently.

During a news conference at the Oakdale campus, Albert Inserra said the school is working with London-based academic investment firm Global University Systems on a long-term solution to keep the school from permanently shutting down.

As News 12 previously reported, Dowling had been slated to close its doors on Wednesday due to high debt and other problems. The news sent a shockwave through the more than 1,600 current students, as well as faculty and alumni.

Inserra said Dowling is very close to inking a deal with GUS, which would provide debt relief to the school and an international marketing plan to bring in more students.

"Global University Systems is coming on as an affiliation partner. They are not, in any way, taking control of Dowling College, but are here to support our mission," said Inserra.

Inserra says he believes classes will resume as normal in the fall. The future of scholarships, Inserra says, is more unclear. He added that all options are on the table.

Dowling says it hopes to finalize the deal with Global University Systems before a June 23 meeting with college accreditation officials. The Middle States Commission on Higher Education placed Dowling on warning two years ago.