Dean Abernathy released an announcement May 1, reversing her previous position on the proposed budget cuts. The new plan under consideration was to equally distribute the $1.4M budget cuts across all departments in the college.
We felt then that this could have been a victory for SAVE UF CISE. However, we had been through several unexpected turns in the last few weeks, so, borrowing from Dean Abernathy’s letter, we announced that, “cautious optimism was under consideration.“
Our caution was wise. The plan laid out out by Dean Abernathy on May 10 at a College of Engineering Department chairs meeting claimed to be an “across the board” 2.9% cut. In the case of CISE, the 2.9% was taken from CISE base budget at the beginning of 2011-2012. This amounted to $190,000. However, CISE has also been told that at least 2 positions that were included in the above base budget, but were due to become vacant in 2012-2013 due to retirements etc. will not be replaced. This amounts to an over 8% recurring cut for CISE.
No other department has been slated to lose positions to the best of our knowledge. In fact, only one other department will lose even one position.
The new plan is decisively not an “across the board” cut. While less draconian than the “CISE dismembering plan” of Apr. 11, or the “Hostile takeover by ECE plan of Apr. 25,” it is decidedly worse than any true across the board cut. The new proposal aligns well with the Dean’s CISE starvation strategy prior to the April 11 attack.
We have come back to Square One.
You might ask:
What original analysis of the “state of the college” and of “growth areas” led Dean Abernathy
to propose each of the plans that have been proposed this spring?
to move positions out of CISE into other departments (this is clearly a recurring cut to CISE)?
to not let CISE in on any of the 12 strategic plan hires so far?
You might also ask:
What does the Dean propose to do when our interim chair steps down on July 1?
Will CISE areas get any of the remaining strategic plan positions, or endowed chair positions currently advertised?
What of the Harris Corporation endowed chair that is specifically earmarked for CISE and has been languishing for 3 years?
Our cautious optimism appears to be under consideration forever.