ASHLAND, Ore. – As Southern Oregon University prepares to make budget cuts, students and faculty are weighing in.
More than 60 people packed a meeting room in SOU’s library Wednesday to hear more information on the “Retrenchment.” SOU leaders said they need to make cuts to dozens of majors, minors, and programs, and lay off faculty, to make up for a multi-million dollar budget gap. The university released a draft plan last week, laying out what programs could be cut, including Physics and International Studies, among many others.
At Wednesday’s public forum, attendees asked questions on ways SOU could make up the gap without some cuts, and how the cuts will affect students’ degrees.
“I’m impressed by the dedication they have to deal with the problem, but it is distressing,” said Liz Morgan-Beesley, a graduate student. Morgan-Beesley was an undergrad seven years ago when SOU previously went through retrenchment, and was in the German program before the major was cut.
SOU president Mary Cullinan said the gap could be between $3 million and $7 million, depending on enrollment and state funding.
The next open forum will be held Friday, February 14 at 10:30 a.m. at the Hannon Library.