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DePauw facing economic issues

Sunday, December 14, 2008

DePauw University President Dr. Brian Casey addressed a letter on Dec. 11 to the university community telling them that the nation's economy has created issues for the institution.

At the same time, he assured staff and students that the school is committed to maintaining its current standards in education including keeping the school's core activities and high level of teaching and learning.

"The financial crisis has indeed adversely affected the University's endowment and has placed significant pressure on our operating budget," said Casey in a letter published on the University's Web site Friday.

"We will weather this storm--there may be some painful decisions to make while we are adjusting to changed circumstances, but this University will preserve its core activities and its commitment to teaching and learning at the highest level," he said.

While the university is looking at ways to reduce expenses, Casey claims he is committed to keeping the current levels of scholarship support for students, moving forward with all tenure-track faculty searches and plans no reductions in tenure-track faculty positions.

So far, the University has not implemented any freezes in hiring or spending. They are looking to reduce expenditures and as a result are reviewing staff vacancies as they occur, only filling those that meet a critical need.

Casey also admits the university does not yet know the full extent of the financial crisis and may not for some time.

"We have been vigilant in keeping abreast of the challenges thus far. But financial difficulties are likely to be ongoing," he stated.

Casey stressed how important continued support and funding by alumni and other friends is to the university. He said the school has faced challenges before and the strength of its community has helped DePauw survive those challenges.

"That loyalty to and belief in the University's commitment to teaching and scholarship will remain DePauw's very foundation," he concluded.


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Stop paying to fly the football and basketball teams all over the country. They should be in a regional conference rather than national. Then they could go to most or all of their games by bus rather than flying. It's supposed to be about academics, not athletics!

-- Posted by VolunteerFF on Mon, Dec 15, 2008, at 6:47 AM

Maybe if they hadn't spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on the renovation of the "house" and that party....they might have some money! Don't forget all the millions that are given to the school.

-- Posted by whodouthinkur on Mon, Dec 15, 2008, at 7:17 AM

Private college = private funds = none of our business.

-- Posted by tackleberry65 on Mon, Dec 15, 2008, at 8:26 AM

Well then VolunteerFF, if you think the financial problems they're facing would be solved by not flying the athletic teams "all over the country" I'm happy to report that doesn't happen!!! The only flight the teams make is to Trinity University in Texas!! Every other school, though they're out of state, are driven to!! It's worth the travel to play in a conference that's actually worth something. I love when people around Greencastle think they know everything there is to know about DePauw, which of course they think is all bad!! You're lucky this university is here!!

-- Posted by dpustudent on Mon, Dec 15, 2008, at 4:12 PM

Well dpustudent, the football team played at Jackson, Mississippi, San Antonio, Texas and Sherman, Texas. They hosted teams from Alabama and Colorado; presumably these teams will host us next season. You say we only flew once? Must be a heckuva drive to the other Texas and MS games. Next year will be a bear, too if they drive to Colorado.

The day the new airport opened, channel 13 reported the "entire DePauw men's basketball team" was there to board a flight for a game. I didn't check the rest of their schedule.

I didn't say this would cure all their problems, but I think they should consider less athletic travel at a time when they are eliminating term teaching positions and considering not replacing tenured faculty when they retire.

I also didn't claim to know all there is to know about DePauw, nor did I say it is "all bad." I know if it weren't for DePauw, Greencastle would be a much smaller town, and I wouldn't ever have heard of it.

Now go study for your finals, kid.

-- Posted by VolunteerFF on Mon, Dec 15, 2008, at 4:40 PM

dpustudent was only reacting to a snide comment. The article only stated that the college is tightening the belt. Nothing to be sacrificed yet.

As a matter of fact, the article didn't mention the cost of sports operations at all. It DID mention this (the last quote in the story);

""That loyalty to and belief in the University's commitment to teaching and scholarship will remain DePauw's very foundation," he concluded."

So, I guess it IS about academics after all.

-- Posted by Xgamer on Mon, Dec 15, 2008, at 7:28 PM

It's a shame that DePauw has put added pressure on its financial health. The drain on the operating budget because of the athletic conference and required travel is indeed staggering. The Walden Inn is another drain on the university financial situation. It's a wonderful facility but at a very high price.

It certainly seems that staffing decisions are suspect...lots a high priced management positions being created in particular departments. I would also recommend that they do not plant thousands of spring bulbs for perfect bloom in March/April and then pull them all out and dump them in the university compost pile in May. Just a few educated observations...

-- Posted by PHD=nocommonsense on Mon, Dec 15, 2008, at 10:33 PM

There are many more facts than were stated in the article, xgamer and dpustudent. My comments were factual, just based on facts other than those presented by the BG. DePauw is a fine institution. I just want to be sure their priorities stay focused on what they are here for. Athletics at all institutions have become so out of hand. When the football coach makes several times what the university president does, as they do at many division I schools, priorities are out of whack. That travel budget would be better spent sending students for research trips and learning opportunities rather than ball games.

-- Posted by VolunteerFF on Tue, Dec 16, 2008, at 6:05 AM


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