Friday, November 24th, 2017

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California Budget Cuts Could Delay Graduation

By Ashley Sinatra

My expected graduation date was printed on the top of my transcripts: May 31, 2010. Then California State Universities were hit with a massive budget cut. This cut lead to several campuses cutting classes, raising tuition prices, cutting teacher’s salaries and hours, and closing off admission for new college-goers. May 31, 2010 looks a lot less hopeful now.

With only thirty units left until I receive my English degree, I had to beg teachers to let me in their classes. I emailed every teacher trying to persuade them to let me be the first on the waiting list if anyone dropped. I had to borrow a few thousand dollars from my boyfriend when loan companies did not want to help me with my last-minute request for the 32% tuition price raise. Next semester looks even dimmer; I have six more classes to complete with limited class sizes and overlapping class times.

In May 2009, Collegenews.com said, “The governor is proposing the cuts in an attempt to close the state’s $42.5 billion gap, which is the largest state budget gap in U.S. history.” This large gap has caused California campuses to undergo more budget cuts than any other university system nationwide. Collegenews.com continues, “The budget to support California schools will decrease up to $2.1 billion.”

This means that CSU campuses are being made to cut $584 million for the 2009/2010 academic year among their campuses. Furthermore, the CSU system looks to reduce the student enrollment by 32,000 students.

“The worst is not even over today,” says University of California President Mark G. Yudof during a Board of Regents meeting in San Francisco. (Watch Yodof’s speech on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MEoYAuGF9Ug) President Yudof continued to express his regrets that students had to pay more. He then said, “The state has stopped paving freeways to higher education and it has started building toll roads.”

It is understandable to have to pay for an education. However, the fact is that students are now paying more for a lesser-quality education. I paid a lot more money to attend classes infected with furlough days and tense teachers. I’m paying brand name price for the cheaper, generic product.

What can California students do during this time? Make your voices heard! Write letters to your school’s and state officials. Creative solutions are what we need to survive this California education budget crisis. If we all took charge of our education and made our ideas known, things will get better. For example, Alison Stinson, Junior at CSU Northridge says, “I honestly don’t think furlough days are the answer. A better solution would be more days where the entire campus shut down. It would save more in the long run. Furlough days are just an added hassle to the professors and students.”

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Attention High School Seniors: Your College Education is in Jeopardy
How Will You Pay for College? Start Planning Now!
How to Handle a Tuition Hike

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5 Responses to California Budget Cuts Could Delay Graduation

  1. Milan Moravec says:

    Current Threats to University of California Don’t Come From the Outside – $3 Million Extravagant Spending by UC President Yudof for University of California Berkeley Chancellor Birgeneau to Hire Consultants – When Work Can Be Done Internally & Impartially
    During the days of the Great Recession, every dollar in higher education counts. Contact Chairwoman Budget Sub-committee on Education Finance Assemblywoman Carter 916.319.2062 – tell her to stop the $3,000,000 spending by Birgeneau on consultants.
    Do the work internally at no additional costs with UCB Academic Senate Leadership (C. Kutz/F. Doyle), the world – class professional UCB faculty/ staff, & the UCB Chancellor’s bloated staff (G. Breslauer, N. Brostrom, F. Yeary, P. Hoffman, C. Holmes etc) & President Yudof.
    President Yudof’s UCB Chancellor should do the high paid work he is paid for instead of hiring expensive East Coast consults to do the work of his job. ‘World class’ smart executives like Chancellor Birgeneau need to do the hard work analysis, and make the tough-minded difficult, decisions to identify inefficiencies.
    Where do the $3,000,000 consultants get their recommendations?
    From interviewing the UCB senior management that hired them and approves their monthly consultant fees and expense reports. Remember the nationally known auditing firm who said the right things and submitted recommendations that senior management wanted to hear and fooled the public, state, federal agencies?
    $3 million impartial consultants never bite the hands (Chancellor Birgeneau/ Chancellor Yeary) that feed them!
    Mr. Birgeneau’s accountabilities include “inspiring innovation, leading change.” Instead of deploying his leadership and setting a good example by doing the work of his Chancellor’s job, Birgeneau outsourced his work to the $3,000,000 consultants. Doesn’t he engage UC and UC Berkeley people at all levels to examine inefficiencies and recommend $150 million of trims? Hasn’t he talked to Cornell and the University of North Carolina – which also hired the consultants — about best practices and recommendations that eliminate inefficiencies?
    No wonder the faculty, staff, students, Senate & Assembly are angry and suspicious.
    In today’s Great Recession three million dollars is a irresponsible price to pay when a knowledgeable ‘world-class’ UCB Chancellor and his bloated staff do not do the work of their jobs.
    Pick up the phone and call: save $3 million for students!

  2. Rich Gamoras says:

    A new website focus on helping California schools was just in our newspaper called CAFEplan dot org which stands for Classified Ads For Education Plan. Who ever came up with this idea is a genius! It is a great alternative funding solution. It may not be much but at least it is something.

  3. Ellis Goldberg says:

    Democracy is about empathy — caring about your fellow citizens, which leads to the principles of freedom and fairness for all. Empathy requires both personal and social responsibility. The ethic of excellence means making the world better by making yourself better, your family better, your community better, and your nation better. Government has two moral missions: protection and empowerment for all. To carry them out, government must be by, for, and of the people.
    From George Lakoff in the Huffington Post.

    A government that cannot carry out those missions of protection and empowerment becomes a failed state, like Somalia, Afghanistan, Haiti and now California is threatened. War, poverty and earthquakes are not the cause. California is threatened by a few who believe that government is evil and should facilitate the greed of a few at the expense of the many. Loopholes and giveaways that cannot be closed or stopped allow the greedy to take far more than a fair share while California is ripped with budget cuts that are making the California we love a failed state.

    One third plus one of either houses of the state legislature currently can veto any budget or revenue legislation – and they do, refusing to consider any new sources of revenue including closing loopholes and ending giveaways. They want to privatize California and run it like a business for the benefit of a few. The purpose of a business is profit for the owners – the purpose of government is protection and empowerment. These two purposes are contradictory and are in conflict.

    Californians for democracy will not standby and let California fail. We will put a constitutional amendment on the ballot in November 2010 that says
    “All legislative action on revenue and budget must be determined by majority vote.”
    The California Democracy Act will change the California Constitution in two places – replacing “two thirds” with “a majority” one for revenue the other for budget. Over 700,000 signatures of Californians who are registered to vote are needed to put it on the ballot. This is your chance to change California history.

    The petition is now available at www. CA4Democracy. com, both in the 4 signature version (14” x 8.5” legal sized) that we have been using and a single signature version (11” x 8.5” letter size). These petitions can be downloaded, printed, signed and mailed.

    In order to make this campaign go viral it is important that you help by telling everyone you know in California to go to http://www.CA4Democracy.com and get the petition.
    1. Email all the Californians on your email list and tell them to similarly forward the email. Make sure the email has http://www.CA4Democracy.com in it.
    2. Write on your facebook wall and those of your friends & groups with the same message.
    3. Find blogs that mention the California budget crisis or similar topics and leave a comment telling readers that they can do something about this issue by signing the petition and helping it go viral. The best way to do this is to write a short comment in Word and then paste the same message in all the blogs you can find.
    4. Look for letters to the editor opportunities and mention http://www.CA4Democracy.com every time.
    5. Those of you who Tweet – please drive your listeners to http://www.CA4Democracy.com.
    6. Become a circulator of petitions or more involved with the campaign, visit http://www.CA4Democracy.com.

  4. Transparency says:

    UCB Chancellor Birgeneau Loss of Trust
    The UCB budget gap has grown to $150 million, and still the Chancellor is spending money that isn’t there on expensive outside consultants. His reasons range from the need for impartiality to requiring the “innovative thinking, expertise, and new knowledge” the consultants would bring.

    Does this mean that the faculty and management of a world-class research and teaching institution lack the knowledge, impartiality, innovation, and professionalism to come up with solutions? Have they been fudging their research for years? The consultants will glean their recommendations from interviewing faculty and the UCB management that hired them; yet solutions could be found internally if the Chancellor were doing the job HE was hired to do. Consultant fees would be far better spent on meeting the needs of students.

    There can be only one conclusion as to why creative solutions have not been forthcoming from the professionals within UCB: Chancellor Birgeneau has lost credibility and the trust of the faculty as well as of the Academic Senate leadership that represents them. Even if the faculty agrees with the consultants’ recommendations – disagreeing might put their jobs in jeopardy – the underlying problem of lost credibility and trust will remain.

  5. Transparency says:

    Loyalty to Cal Chancellor Birgeneau and Provost Breslauer is dead. Public and private organizations are into a phase of creative disassembly where reinvention and adjustments are constant. Hundreds of thousands of jobs are being shed by Chevron, NUMMI, Wells Fargo Bank, HP, Bechtel, Starbucks, etc., as well as the state, counties and cities.

    Even solid world-class institutions like the University of California Berkeley are firing staff, faculty and part-time lecturers. Estimates are that the state of California may jettison 47,000 positions.

    Yet many employees, professionals and faculty cling to old assumptions about one of the most critical relationship of all: the implied, unwritten contract between employer and employee.

    Until recently, loyalty was the cornerstone of that relationship. Employers promised job security and a steady progress up the hierarchy in return for employees fitting in, performing in prescribed ways and sticking around.

    Longevity was a sign of employeer-employee relations; turnover was a sign of dysfunction. None of these assumptions apply today. Organizations can no longer guarantee employment and careers, even if they want to.

    Organizations that paralyzed themselves with an attachment to “success brings success” rather than “success brings failure” are now forced to break the implied contract with employees — a contract nurtured by management that the future can be controlled.

    Jettisoned employees are finding that the hard-won knowledge,



    skills and capabilities earned while being loyal are no longer valuable in the employment marketplace.

    What kind of a contract can employers and employees make with each other? The central idea is both simple and powerful: the job or position is a shared situation.

    Employers and employees face market and financial conditions together, and the longevity of the partnership depends on how well the for-profit or not-for-profit meets the needs of customers and constituencies.

    Neither employer nor employee has a future obligation to the other. Organizations train people. Employees develop the kind of security they really need — skills, knowledge and capabilities that enhance future employability.

    The partnership can be dissolved without either party considering the other a traitor. Loyalty to Cal’s senior management is dead at University of California Berkeley — so get used to it.

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