This archived article was written by: Erin Page
Faculty and administrative members met with James Morales, USU VP for student life, and his executive Eric Olsen on Monday, Oct. 5 to voice their concerns in regard to student services issues about the planned joining of CEU and USU.
The decision to merger or affiliate has already been made but how it’s going to happen is still unanswered.
Instead of referring to a merger, the term being employed now is affiliation. The main unanswered question is if CEU will remain its autonomy, if USU will take over or if CEU becomes a comprehensive regional college.
Alex Herzog, dean of students wants to know what defines a comprehensive regional college. Another issue is if we would be given a chancellor to oversee our campus or if we would report directly to USU. “[We] really need those answers,” said Brad King, VP of advancement.
Morales said several times they don’t want to do anything that will cost either campus dollars. He also talked about the combining of CEU and USU programs if it would grant the schools additional money. King said, “our own budget cuts will lose more positions than if we merge.” It was also said in this situation that no one will save a lot of money.
UVU supposedly spent $3 million on their image when they changed to a university, so where is the money coming from to support this change? “I don’t know where the money is coming from,” Morales said.
How to incorporate Work Force Education students or UForce, comprising a third of CEU’s student population, about 1,000 headcount, haven’t been looked at, with Morales saying he didn’t know if UForce was on the top list of concerns. Morales said USU doesn’t have all the answers either, but urges faculty from both colleges to create a connection.
CEU students were guaranteed a voice, but in what form or way was not defined. During the meeting there was lots of talk about what needs to be done, things that need to be defined and information the public should be educated about.
Herzog hopes the college stays autonomous but believes President Mike King incorporates lots of important ideas. He thinks the committee has put the issues together well and this merger or affiliation “if anything will build up [the college]” and enhance things for students.