Staff members and students are furious after the the University of Wisconsin at Stevens Point discussed a plan to eliminate 13 majors including English, philosophy, history and Spanish.
While the usefulness of a philosophy degree may be debated, the others are core-curriculum based degrees used in a plethora of fields, especially education.
The campus — one of 11 campuses in the University of Wisconsin system — would instead focus on programs that have “clear career pathways,” the Stephens Point Journal reported.
Under the proposal, the school would expand areas such as marketing, management, graphic design and computer information systems — areas that “have demonstrated value and demand in the region,” according to the school.
The school’s administration is framing the idea as a way to increase its declining enrollment and to deal with a multimillion-dollar deficit, according to the Journal.
Faculty and students, however, plan a sit-in protest this week at the campus administration building to oppose the change.
The plan needs to be approved by a campus governance committee and the University of Wisconsin system’s chancellor and Board of Regents for it to take effect, according to the Post.
“To fund this future investment, resources would be shifted from programs with lower enrollment, primarily in the traditional humanities and social sciences,” the school said in a statement.
“Although some majors are proposed to be eliminated, courses would continue to be taught in these fields, and minors or certificates will be offered.”
Students intend to stage a sit-in of the campus administration building on Wednesday to protest proposed changes to academic programs.
The demonstration, called Save Our Majors, will take place from 1 to 5 p.m.. Participants will gather at the sundial at 12:30 p.m. and then march to Old Main at 1 p.m. to conduct a sit-in for 13 minutes, a minute for each major that is up elimination under a university proposal.
The student-led and -organized protest is in support of the 13 humanities and social science majors that the university is considering cutting in its proposal.
Outcry from the campus community and surrounding areas continues after UW-Stevens Point unveiled a proposal in early March to eliminate 13 liberal arts degree majors, including English, history and political science. The cuts of 13 majors and the additions or expansions of 16 majors are part of university efforts to deal with a projected deficit of $4.5 million through two years because of declining enrollment and lower tuition revenues.
Mr Americana, Overpasses News Desk
March 21st, 2018