Thursday, September 9, 2010

Screwed up priorities

The Regents have approved a $60 million dollar expansion of the recreation center. According to the Daily, the "145,000-square-foot expansion will include two new gymnasiums, more space for fitness equipment, more locker rooms, a jogging track and a climbing wall." As usual, the Regents have approved shelling out millions of dollars on new construction. Seems like they've never met a building project that they don't like. (Next up: Northrop Auditorium) The administration, most likely in an effort to dupe prospective students with glitzy facilities, has prioritized non-instructional spending over giving students a good education. At a time when students in CLA cannot get the classes that they need to graduate--due to deep cuts in the College that have reduced support for filling tenured faculty positions and for hiring TAs for large lecture courses--spending $60 million dollars for recreational facilities seems like a luxury that we can't afford. There is also talk of building a new recreation center on the West Bank.

But no worries, they tell us, because "the building will be financed primarily through the Student Capital Enhancement Fee introduced at the start of the fall 2008 semester. The fee is being phased in over five years and will cap at $75 per student per semester. It is expected to raise about $79 million a year, director of Financial Analysis Lincoln Kallsen said. It will fund the entire project." In other words, whether students want the facility or not, they are going to be shelling out more in student fees, and this on top of ever-rising tuition costs that have resulted in huge debt burdens for our students. Open up your wallets, kids!

1 comment:

  1. This is outrageous. The so-called Faculty Consultative Committee should DO something about this situation and Northrop. Faculty governance is a joke unless these people stand up to this absurd behaviour.

    We have salary cuts, layoffs, the poli sci dept decimated, AND a condition of "financial stringency" declared by the Morrill Hall Gang.

    Bread, circuses, and now a rock-climbing wall. Our students are being short-changed in their education and the Morrill Hall inmates tries to polish their image to hook suckers? Their attitude toward actual educational priorities of our students is contemptible.

    Did you see the absurd new video that PresB spammed? Notice the helicopter shots, etc. How much did that cost? Did you notice that yesterday the BoRe approved firing up the old Driven to Discover campaign on TV? How much is that going to cost?

    The Morrill Hall Gang is totally out of touch with average faculty members. And the fix seems to be on for PresB's replacement given the weary negligence of the search and the not too subtle reminder by the Chair - Clyde the Glide - that the BoRe will decide in the end. If they don't like the candidates presented by the search committee, then they'll decide themselves - like they did last time. One of the Regents actually stated his opinion that there are too many faculty on the search committee.