This is a letter from a concerned UF faculty member:
Dear Engineering Colleague:
Please see https://saveufcise.wordpress.com for details of the plan.Even if you believe the Dean’s rationale for this plan (See Footnote 2 below) and you believe that the cuts are recurring (see Footnote 3 below), as thoughtful intellectuals..
(1) Develop a temporary plan to handle the cut during a stop-gap period, while trying to ensure that any likely damage is reversible.
(2) During this stop-gap period, develop a phased long-term plan that includes revenue increasing measures and other permanent changes.
Please counter-propose alternative budget cut plans by visiting https://saveufcise.wordpress.com
THE DEAN’S DRASTIC AND IMMEDIATE RESTRUCTURING
The Dean’s plan however ties the proposed cut to a drastic and immediate restructuring that would cause irreversible damage to the reputation of the college and the university and to the state for a long time to come. Please see https://saveufcise.wordpress.com to see the details of the impacts of the restructuring, and a sample of the huge global outcry from students, industry, faculty members, and university administrators worldwide.
FORMULA FOR DEGRADING TO A POLYTECHNIC MODEL, WITHOUT INTEGRATED TEACHING AND BASIC RESEARCH
I am writing to you today to make you aware that this restructuring would serve as a formula and a precedent for something else that could affect your department as soon as next year.
Some state governors have already espoused their support for a model of future public education (with zero state support) whose key features are the following.
(1) Polytechnics (diploma mills taught by instructors on limited term contracts) for producing a large number of undergraduates inexpensively;
(2) “Research” equated to “Development, or Entrepreneurship” i.e., self-funded institutes, whose effort is invested toward a short-term deliverable or a profit bottom line. This excludes basic research or scholarship, of the type that resulted in the internet.
(3) A decoupling of (1) and (2): an individual is classified under the mission of (1) or (2), but not both. The combined teacher-researcher-scholar becomes unimportant. Ergo, basic research and scholarship are sidelined.
The Dean’s plan follows the above model.
(1) The plan degrades the CISE department to a polytechnic.
A concerned UF faculty member
Footnote 1: ABOUT THE CISE DEPARTMENT:
The department currently has 32 tenure track faculty, approximately 610 undergraduate majors, 400 masters students and 130 PhD students. It maintains an international research reputation as befits its status as a research department in the flagship research university of Florida. It has 2 ACM, 4 IEEE, and 2 AAAS fellows, and 12 faculty (22% of all faculty in the College of Engineering) who have received the prestigious NSF Career Award belong to the CISE department. The CISE faculty engages in substantial interdisciplinary research, the majority of which takes place in collaboration with the College of Medicine and the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences within and outside UF. The department’s federal grant research expenditures are about $5 million per year, all of it on intelligent human beings, NOT on equipment, space or infrastructure (which software research does not need). The CISE department accounts for less than 10% of the College cost, and has the highest revenue/cost ratio of all the departments in the College.
Footnote 2: The Dean’s circle of supporters have based their justifications on factually incorrect statements and half-truths, and continue to do so today. These are pointed out under “Misrepresentations” link at https://saveufcise.wordpress.com
Footnote 3: This year, the legislature as well as the Board of Governors has been insistent in repeating that these cuts should be considered nonrecurring cuts. Maintaining reserves causes the legislature to target those reserves when cuts are assigned to universities.