Southern Oregon University

Source: David Nogueras, Oregon Public Broadcasting

The faculty union at Southern Oregon University is reacting to news that the school plans to cut programs and staff in order to fill a $4 million budget shortfall by the year 2015.

Board members of the Association of Professors at Southern Oregon University will meet Wednesday night to discuss the issue. 

SOU President Mary Cullinan addressed the matter on Tuesday in her annual State of the University speech.   Cullinan said reductions in state funding along with two consecutive years of decreased enrollment contributed to the financial crisis. The president then said the school was exercising a clause in its collective bargaining agreement to begin a planning process to reduce, reconfigure or eliminate academic programs.

Greg Pleva is the president of the faculty union.  He says according to the contract, the administration has 15 academic days to make its case to the union that such a move is necessary.

“We’re going to be looking at all those things and seeing where the board and the membership stand as far, you know, are they convinced this is true,” said Pleva.

SOU spokesman James Beaver says a list of cuts could be finalized by February.

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