April 26, 2017
Filed under News
UPDATE: This story has been updated from last night’s article with quotes and information from Eastern President David Glassman
The university administration will ask the board of trustees to consider the elimination of three degree programs at its meeting Friday.
These programs are the bachelor’s in Africana Studies, career and technical education and adult and community education, according to a board report attached to the meeting’s agenda.
Philosophy was originally slated to be considered for deletion, but following an agreement between the administration and philosophy faculty, the administration will rescind its recommendation for elimination of the philosophy major to the Board, Eastern President David Glassman said in an email.
The agreement includes philosophy faculty going down from seven full-time faculty to four full-time faculty through attrition by the Summer of 2019 and getting 20 majors in the philosophy program by 2020.
If either of these conditions are not met,Glassman said the administration will bring back the recommendation that the program be eliminated to the Board of Trustees.
“I am very pleased that this agreement could be made through collaborative discussions between the administration and the dean of the College of Arts and Humanities, the chair of the Philosophy Department and the philosophy faculty,” Glassman said.
Workgroup No. 7, which looked at academic programs during the vitalization project, originally recommended seven programs be considered. After further administrative considerations, this was narrowed down to four programs.
The only program of these that would potentially lead to faculty layoffs would be philosophy. Because of this, it was contractually mandated to be reviewed by the Academic Program Elimination/Reorganization Review Committee. The committee received information on all four of the programs and so did the Faculty Senate, the Council on Academic Affairs and the Council on Teacher Education. The Faculty Senate studied all four programs, the CAA looked at philosophy, Africana Studies and adult and community education, and the CTE looked at career and technical education.
It is possible that non-faculty members could be laid off because of program eliminations, Glassman said, but it has not been planned.
Vicki Woodard, Eastern’s coordinator of public information, said since program elimination was put under action items, this means the board will vote on these recommendations at its meeting Friday.
Even if eliminated, students currently enrolled in these programs would still be able to finish their degrees. Any program approved for elimination would not take any new students after the tenth day of school for the fall 2017 semester.
Jonelle DePetro, chair of the philosophy department, chose not to comment except to say that they hope the philosophy department will not be eliminated.