Administrative consolidations proposed for CSCU colleges - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Administrative consolidations proposed for CSCU colleges

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(CSCU photo) (CSCU photo)

The president of the Connecticut State College and University system is recommending the consolidation of administrative personnel across the 17 colleges and universities and an operational consolidation at the 12 community colleges to help meet serious budgetary challenges.

In a letter released Monday to the CSCU community, Mark Ojakian said it has become abundantly clear the system's operational costs are outpacing revenues, "creating a true structural deficit."

He suggested an administration consolidation to the system, where departments like IT and human resources would consolidate.

It would save $13 million.

The second strategy proposal includes leadership and management consolidation for community colleges. That would save $28 million.

After one to two years, the savings could top $41 million.

But the savings wouldn't be possible without a reduction in work force, so some staff members could lose their jobs.

“We just need to do things differently to be responsive to the current economic climate which is going to continue to be the climate for the future,” Ojakian said.

State funding to the system has declined 12.4 percent in recent years.

The changes may not be noticeable for students, but they could have a huge impact when it comes to saving money.

"I think it might be what has to happen to keep community colleges going," said Shad Nadeau, who attends Manchester Community College.

On Monday, Ojakian talked about two strategies 

to restructure and cut costs at universities and community colleges across the state.

All ideas to put students first.

“It was time for us as a system to have a serious conversation about how do we operate as a system, what we need to do to deal with our current deficit and projected deficit and what do we need to do to be responsive to students and to students success,” Ojakian said.

While this is just a proposal, he says something needs to be done.

Copyright 2016 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). The Associated Press contributed to this report. All rights reserved.