Report from CSU faculty warns of academic program cuts

Administrators at some Cal State campuses are weighing whether to close state funding gaps by eliminating academic programs and departments. The union that represents Cal State professors today released a report that criticizes these plans.

The report's called “Restructuring the CSU or Wrecking It?” California Faculty Association president Lillian Taiz warned that carrying out the changes would leave graduates less than prepared for solving problems amid economic upheaval. "Cal Poly Pomona has talked about eliminating history and philosophy, for example, and the notion is that somehow students from Cal Poly Pomona will be able to jump on the freeway and ride over to Cal State L.A. if they want to take a history course."

A Cal Poly Pomona spokesman confirmed those programs are under consideration for elimination. Administrators have made no final decisions, he added.

In an e-mail, CSU spokeswoman Clara Potes-Fellow countered the CFA claims. "There is no systemwide restructuring at CSU campuses and above all no changes in the mission of the CSU. The CFA has captured three specific situations at CSU campuses to make an inaccurate blanket statement about the system. The bottom line is that the CSU this year received an unprecedented budget cut of $564 million that has forced the system and campuses to implement enormous sacrifices to adapt to a new budget reality."

The president of Cal State Dominguez Hills was set to decide this month which programs would get the ax, but she suspended that decision until spring. Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger’s budget proposal will be out by then and more accurate budget predictions may allow public universities to calculate reductions for next fiscal year.