UWS Responds To Gov.’s Proposed Cuts Of UW-System

Historic Amount Would be $300 Million

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Big budget cuts could once again take a stab at the University of Wisconsin System — this time in the form of a proposed $300 million.

Gov. Scott Walker is behind the proposed cuts, which would be the largest ever in the history of the UW-System. 

UW-Superior officials said they have had to cut 34 positions just last year.

The positions have touched all departments, including grounds keeping, custodial and faculty. 

This is not the first time the university has had to evaluate what programs could be consolidated, where reductions need to be made, and what programs are most popular among students. 

The UW-System was forced to make reductions in the last state budget as well. 

Popular programs likely to not be on the chopping block include: education, business, and professional programs, like social workers. 

In order to off set having to make a lot of faculty cuts, Provost Faith Hensrud said the university has made reductions in other areas.

”(We) look(ed) at some of the non–academic areas so that we’re not impacting students as much. In the case of our institution we actually contracted out for our custodial and grounds and for our bookstore,” explained Provost Hensrud. 

It’s unknown how the millions of dollars would be split among the UW-System, which includes 26 institutions, 13 four-year campuses and 13 two-year campuses. 

To students, all of this may seem like it has a silver lining — a tuition freeze for the next two years — but Hensrud said it would have underlying impacts. 

“When you look at reducing those state funds you have to make up those dollars somewhere else, or where you can make those reductions,” said Hensrud. 

The other concern raised by Sen. Bewley is whether there will be uncontrolled tuition increases beginning in 2017, when the freeze would end. 

Gov. Walker will release his final budget plan Feb. 3, which is the time we will know how much money will for sure be cut from the UW-System. 

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