State News

UNC system cuts likely mean layoffs, course reductions

Posted April 7, 2011

— North Carolina's public university system says state budget cuts could mean thousands of fewer classes across the 16 campuses and job losses for more than 1,000 faculty members.

The University of North Carolina Board of Governors heard a presentation Thursday that describes what a possible 15 percent cut in state funding would mean to the system and to individual schools.

Administrators said about 9,000 classes would be dropped, including more than 1,000 at North Carolina State University alone. About 3,200 jobs, including 1,500 faculty, would be eliminated across the system.

"The ramifications are so large, it's really almost too hard to get our arms around them yet," UNC President Tom Ross said.

Ross said UNC officials had been told to prepare for cuts of 5 to 10 percent, but now projections are for cuts of 15 to 20 percent, which he calls "gigantic for us."

"If we see cuts in that neighborhood, I think it really is going to be permanently damaging to the university."

UNC-Charlotte officials projected that students would have to spend an extra semester at college to meet all of their graduation requirements because of the course cutbacks.

That prospect alarmed some UNC students.

"I already have enough trouble getting into my classes. There aren't enough teachers in the journalism school," said Ajsela Pestalic, a junior at UNC-Chapel Hill.

UNC system cuts likely mean layoffs, course reductions UNC system cuts likely mean layoffs, course reductions

"One of my friends last year, she's a math major. She spent a whole semester taking random electives because she can't get into any of the math classes," said Meagan Metkowski, a junior at UNC-Chapel Hill.

The UNC system accounts for 14 percent of the overall state budget. House Republican leaders plan to begin unveiling portions of their budget next week, so the magnitude of the cuts is still unclear.

The state faces a projected $2.4 billion deficit for the 2011-12 fiscal year, which starts in July.

UNC officials said raising tuition drastically isn't the answer to the budget problem. Tuition for in-state undergraduates has gone up by an average of almost 150 percent across the system over the last 10 years, they said.

"The rest of the world points to this system, and we can't let it be dismantled," said John Davis, a Board of Governors member.

15 Comments

This story is closed for comments.

Oldest First
View all
  • mikeyj Apr 8, 2011

    Ptah: Spoken like a true government employee. When was the last time you checked "your" credit score? We demanded cuts, sit down and shut up and quit pounding your fists on the table.

  • michaelclay Apr 8, 2011

    penny for your thoughts, Are you serious? What's your degree in, bigotry!?

  • Ptah Apr 8, 2011

    "What about the one just added at Chapel Hill - IRreligious studies. What the heck do you call that?"

    So, you don't have a problem with your children and other people's children being brainwashed with your brand of religion, but you have a problem with people learning the truth?

    Why are you so bigoted and hypocritical? Seems like you were short changed on your thoughts there.

    There are other ways to cut and balance the budget. Our children's education, teachers, and state employees getting lamblasted by the politicians isn't the answer.

    You can bet when election time comes, there will be lines out the doors voting against the incumbents.

  • penny for your thoughts Apr 8, 2011

    "So to those complaining, where would you cut the budget? Be specific, not non-starters like cut waste etc. How about we cut out the nonsense degrees like African-American studies, ethnic studies, women's studies etc." - Dat Mofo
    GREAT POINT!!! What about the one just added at Chapel Hill - IRreligious studies. What the heck do you call that - oh yea, I'm sorry, will there be fries with that sir? Do you want to super-size your order?
    I certainly wouldn't spend tuition money on that for my kid. I hate my tax dollars go to something like that!

  • Honesty first Apr 8, 2011

    I think it would be great to close the Admision office 2 days each week. Then there would be fewer people thinking Steve Farmer was incompetent if he pnly had 3 days each were to demonstrate his lack of skills.

  • blackdog Apr 8, 2011

    I'll bet many who bought the GOP election slogan, of "Jobs are the number one priority", didn't think they meant, CUTTING jobs...

  • Dat MoFo Apr 7, 2011

    So to those complaining, where would you cut the budget? Be specific, not non-starters like cut waste etc. How about we cut out the nonsense degrees like African-American studies, ethnic studies, women's studies etc. That would free up money for math, engineering and other useful programs.

  • Killian Apr 7, 2011

    My daughter got screwed by this, too. She had her schedule laid out for next semester with 18 credits and has now been told that she cannot take more than 17! What a crock.

  • wjcspanteach Apr 7, 2011

    I have 3 classes left to graduate -- if they cut classes -- I may not graduate on time and may end up delaying my entrance into a Ph.D. program. Why are we always trying to balance the budget on the backs of state employees and the education system (both k-12 and university)? How do we expect our society to continue when we continuously cut the ONE thing that assures our society's prosperity?

  • paginasecunda Apr 7, 2011

    Online courses are not a solution here - we need real courses. If they cut my program at NC State, I don't know what I will do. The number one investment of any country should be education. Yet that's the first thing we cut.

More...