CCAS’ budget cuts less than expected

The Columbian College of Arts and Sciences must make budget reductions totaling $700,000 in light of a recently announced budget proposal to cut $1 to $2 million from academic expenses, said William Frawley, outgoing Dean of CCAS.

Frawley added that he will carry out these reductions on a much smaller scale than he had originally conceived when planning for a proposed cut to academics of $4 million.

“We are happy that through the extended, close work of the faculty and administration, we could develop some constructive solutions to the present budget pressures,” Frawley said.

He added that the University’s decision provides a “difficult but manageable solution” for balancing the budget and that 80 percent of the proposed CCAS reductions will affect full-time faculty across all the college’s departments.

The University announced last week that $5 million would be cut from capital expenditures and $3.2 million would be cut from administrative expenses, more than originally planned, in order to reduce the cuts to academics.

Executive Vice President of Academic Affairs Donald Lehman said this week that deans from across the University’s colleges are making recommendations of how to distribute their reductions in specific departments.

The Music Department will experience cuts to some beginning music classes and studio instruction for students with no previous training, Frawley said.

These programs put “an enormous demand” on the department by running a yearly deficit of $200,000 to $300,000, Frawley said.

“The reduction in beginning music instruction is a way to achieve both fiscal prudence and curricular fine tuning,” Frawley said.

He added that CCAS will continue to meet the instructional needs of music majors and minors, Presidential Arts Scholars and others who have a close affiliation with the department.

Frawley did not specify what characteristics delineate a student as one with close affiliations to the music department, adding that the department is currently developing a specific plan for these reductions and a process for working with non-music majors in studio classes.

“The arts and humanities continue to prosper at GW,” Frawley said. “We have supported them well in CCAS and will continue to do so within the budgetary bounds we have.”

Students and faculty made noise about Frawley’s proposed Music Department cuts outside Rice Hall Wednesday afternoon. The protesters held signs and played instruments including violins, drums and saxophones in attempts to get administrators’ attention about their view of the cuts.

“How can you take away beginner classes and the opportunity to learn from students who attend a liberal arts college?” said sophomore Steve Kass, referring to CCAS. Kass is a member of the Vibes, an a capella group.

Frawley also plans to eliminate a number of open full-time faculty positions, as well as the Columbian Research Fellows program, which made time available for faculty trying to complete and publish research. Frawley said the program has produced seven books in its three years of existence.

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