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Published December 05, 2013, 05:07 PM

MSUM announces plan to avoid multi-million dollar budget deficit

Moorhead, MN (WDAY TV) - Minnesota State University Moorhead has introduced a plan to avoid a multi-million dollar budget deficit, at a cost to students and faculty

By: Kay Cooley, WDAY

Moorhead, MN (WDAY TV) - Minnesota State University Moorhead has introduced a plan to avoid a multi-million dollar budget deficit, at a cost to students and faculty

The university unveiled its proposal, full of campus-wide cuts.

The school's plan includes cutting both faculty and student programs, all to try to steer clear of a projected eight million dollar deficit in 2016.

The proposal comes after an enrollment decline of about 10% in the last two years.

It was a full house at MSUM, where everyone learned sixteen temporary faculty and six tenured, or tenured-track faculty could lose their jobs, if they do not first accept a second round of early separation incentives.

The proposal also includes phasing out five low-enrollment majors, including medical laboratory technician, masters in fine arts, and community health, as well as merging several academic departments.

Students in those programs will be able to develop a plan to complete their degree in the next three years.

But many in the audience today say those things should not be sacrificed, just to save money.

Jill Frederick/Prof. of English: “one of the things that really frightens me is that the work of the university is done in the classroom by faculty members. My point is that it seems somehow that faculty are almost ephemeral to the educational process.”

Edna Szymanski/MSUM President: “Faculty are very concerned. I would be too and I am. I don't like cutting faculty, but the reality of it is, is what we've done here is decreased faculty proportional to the enrollment decline.”

This proposed plan would save roughly three million dollars.

The university's faculty association will review it and put together a response by late this month.

A final plan should be announced early next year.

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