At Moorhead campus, liberal arts may be on the chopping block

  • Article by: Maura Lerner , Star Tribune
  • Updated: November 27, 2013 - 9:29 PM

With enrollments dropping, state university campus looks for ways to chop faculty, programs.

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homeryanstaNov. 27, 13 8:14 PM

How is Computer Science on the chopping blocks? Are kids too stupid now a days to realize that CS is the money making degree now?

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honeybooNov. 27, 1311:01 PM

Liberal arts ought to be on the chopping block. It demands that you get a graduate degree instead of a job.

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one4themoneyNov. 27, 1311:51 PM

Colleges/Universities should have tiered tuition that will allow students to still major in liberal arts subjects but have them to pay more to do so. It will compel academically luke warm students to pause before choosing a major that is an easy fall back (ex. poli sci). Smaller depts will also have the money to legitimize their taking up space on campus.

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Kate23Nov. 28, 13 1:01 AM

One might consider just closing the entire Moorhead branch rather than watering it down into an unrecognizable gruel.

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texas_technomanNov. 28, 13 6:02 AM

I didnt see sports on the list?

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luzhishenNov. 28, 13 6:56 AM

texas_technoman has it right - sports somehow never get cut, even though they usually cost more per student than the much-maligned liberal arts. The MNSCU universities are not getting multi-million-dollar pay days like bigger universities (and most of those lose money on athletics). MnSCU inter-collegiate sports are fun to watch but do not contribute to basic knowledge as do things like the sciences and the arts. Students can learn how to hone their competitive and teamwork skills in other university activities or classes and let the townsfolk watch the high school teams. MnSCU would be better off if the legislature simply prohibited the schools from having anything more than club sports.

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decembersueNov. 28, 13 7:26 AM

English departments are huge profit centers in most universities, as they are the ones that teach illiterate business majors how to read and write. In addition, English faculty are far cheaper than science or CS faculty. Most liberal arts majors actually cost very little compared to supposedly more "practical" majors. Putting such a department on the chopping block indicates the school has no intention of holding up high academic standards. I predict these cuts will destroy Moorhead's academic reputation, what there is of it. In the end, prestigious private schools are not chopping liberal arts - they're doubling down on it with great success. English majors have very low unemployment rates, despite popular myth. Industry is desperate for people with real leadership and analytical skills as well as writing skills. The most useless major in any university is called "business," and more and more companies are realizing this. Which schools are doing the worst in terms of students paying back their loans? Not the liberal arts schools - nope, it's the "business" oriented for profit schools that are proving to be financial disasters. What a tragedy if real universities follow suit.

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decembersueNov. 28, 13 7:28 AM

homeryansta, I suspect CS is on the chopping block as it is very expensive to run. In addition, Minnesota has never developed the robust tech industry of the west coast or Northeast, making those careers lower profile here. In addition, the continued, and worsening, gender disparity for CS is probably hurting the field overall.

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optionNov. 28, 13 8:04 AM

Computer Science is in the Red Zone? That's got to be an error.

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swschradNov. 28, 13 8:08 AM

@decembersue: you perhaps never heard of Honeywell, of Univac, of Control Data, of Cray? all of those major mainframe companies were Minnesota born and bred, one feeding off the other. their tech pool plus the Mayo and the U of M medical school bred Medtronic, Guidant, St. Jude Medical, and brought forth the first heart-lung machine. Minnesota has been a tech haven since the 1950s. we're just quiet, polite, and very Scandahoovian here. // as for chopping liberal arts programs, if you don't have them, you have a tech school, not a university.

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