Thursday April 10, 2003   |   |   online since 1994
Campus News
Police Beat
Online Crossword

Write a letter to the Editor

Contact the Daily Wildcat staff

Search the Wildcat archives

Browse the Wildcat archives

Employment at the Wildcat

Advertise in the Wildcat

Print Edition Delivery and Subscription Info

Send feedback to the web designers

Arizona Student Media info

UATV - student TV

KAMP - student radio

Daily Wildcat staff alumni

Section Header
Plan changes released today

By Jeff Sklar
Arizona Daily Wildcat
Thursday April 10, 2003

Some of the programs targeted under President Pete Likins' plan to narrow UA's mission could learn today that they have been spared.

Likins and Provost George Davis plan to release today final recommendations on whether to go forward with most of about 40 plans to cut, merge and reorganize university programs, UA spokeswoman Sharon Kha said yesterday.

Earlier this week, Davis would not discuss specifics of those recommendations, but he and Likins have said they might protect some areas they targeted when they released initial plans in January under Focused Excellence, the president's plan for narrowing the university's mission to deal with years of dwindling state funding.

For people involved in the programs, which range from information resources and library sciences to planning, today's announcement will mark the end of a two-month wait that many of them have spent arguing to save their programs.

In the School of Information Resources and Library Sciences, the attitude is one of optimism. After arguing on behalf of the program, the only of its kind in the Rocky Mountain region, the school's director likes her chances of hearing good news today.

"My expectations are very high," said SIRLS director Brook Sheldon. "I think SIRLS is going to get good news. It's been a long spring but I think SIRLS is going to come out all right."

The school is hosting a fund-raising dinner on Saturday, and Sheldon said she hopes that event will take on a joyous tone.

"I hope it'll be a celebratory dinner," she said.

Optimism seemed to be the watchword yesterday in the affected areas, with several department heads saying they were hoping for the best.

"We're waiting for word," said Barbara Becker, who heads the School of Planning. "I think that we gave some pretty good alternatives for our program, and that it is a nationally recognized program. Our hope is that they understand the value of it."

The potential closure of planning and landscape architecture has drawn fire from community members, who say those two schools serve important needs both locally and nationally.

Richard Eribes, dean of the College of Architecture, Planning and Landscape Architecture, submitted proposals last month for implementing fees for students college-wide to help keep planning and the School of Landscape Architecture alive.

Once Likins and Davis release their recommendations tomorrow, any move that could displace faculty members will undergo an extensive review process. Faculty in affected departments will be allowed to weigh in, and unless they all agree to a specific change, so will a series of review committees.

Though review committees can only make recommendations, one department head said he thinks those groups could become allies in the fight to protect targeted programs.

"Our hope is that our proposal eventually goes through the committee process," said Steven Mullen, head of the atmospheric sciences department, which is targeted for elimination. "I have confidence in my peer faculty members and students and others who would reside on these committees that they would do a very conscientious job."

Ultimately, the Arizona Board of Regents must approve any proposed program change. Davis said Monday that he expects the board to consider at least some of the proposals at its June meetings. Others will wait until next year.

Keren G. Raz contributed to this report.

Something to say? Discuss this on WildChat

Webmaster -
© Copyright 2002 - The Arizona Daily Wildcat - Arizona Student Media