As the Regents of the University of California were voting to increase student tuitions by 32% last fall, students and faculty members outside of the meetings were protesting with one common message: cut the excess and fat from the UC budget before you raise student fees. Whether UC executives have directly answered the students’ pleas is debatable, but today the UC Board of Regents has decided to go forward with a plan to trim $500 million in administrative costs over the next five years and shift the savings to academics. There will be some layoffs and personnel cutbacks through attrition, and the 10 campuses in the UC system will consolidates services, from library administration to financial reports. A leaner and meaner UC system is welcome news in this era of depleted state budgets, and will certainly be applauded by students, faculty and administration, but will it ultimately translate into a better education for California’s vaunted public universities?
Nathan Brostrom, University of California executive vice president for business operations
Jesse Cheng, student Regent Designate