Well, gang, the bloodletting has begun…

Northwest President Dr. John Jasinski, left, and Provost Dr. Doug Dunham answer questions from media during a Feb. 16 news conference to address program and personnel changes announced by the University. (Photo by Darren Whitley/University Relations)

Not here, thank goodness. Yet. But at Northwest Missouri State, some people are going to be out of work soon.

About 20 people have to clear their offices by June 30.

On Thursday, Northwest announced it was reducing its number of departments from 19 to 11, transitioning administrators to classroom positions and whacking its dance program and its department of family and consumer sciences.

O.K. So what does this mean for us?

With your indulgence, The Watch has an idea or two in that regard.

Like with any other great undertaking, no one wants to go first. Last year, when the first applications for tuition exemptions went down, it had to be the University of Missouri that “went first.” They had the resources and political clout to run interference. And even that didn’t help when Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon penalized all tuition raisers but one. Missouri Southern got some tornado mercy.

That won’t happen this year. And this year, the UM system has too much to lose. It is someone else’s turn on the wrong side of the glory hole.

That someone is Northwest.

This is uncharted territory. Northwest is throwing its austerity program out there and giving everyone else something to work with. It’s like reading the putt of the golfer before you.

So let’s look at the Northwest Missouri plan as announced. This is likely the model that other regional universities will follow.

  • Layoffs. Twenty souls and 2.8% of the university’s workforce sacrificed. Imagine your Thanksgiving table of 10. Pick three who have to die.
  • Consolidation of department with a look to “synergy.” Synergy is code for “music and art are arts, so they are the same.”
  • Moving department heads that are “synergized” back to the classroom.
  • No announced cuts in athletics. Northwest is a power in Division II football and is in this year’s basketball Top 20.

Tomorrow, we will look at this “Northwestern Blueprint” and apply it to Missouri Southern. And what it could mean to higher education opportunities in Missouri.

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4 Responses to Well, gang, the bloodletting has begun…

  1. TheSaint says:

    “Layoffs. Twenty souls and 2.8% of the university’s workforce sacrificed. Imagine your Thanksgiving table of 10. Pick three who have to die.”

    Did I miss that day in 3rd grade or is 3 out of 10 THIRTY percent? It seems that at your Thanksgiving table of 10, someone loses his or her non-dominant arm.

    • Yes. We know. And we can’t call you a smartass, because we have the market cornered on snarky assholitude.
      But, in our defense, (and this is not clear from the shitty way we put it) we didn’t mean for it to equate to three percent. We meant the difficulty of picking three family members who must die. It was about the moral difficulty and not the math/raw numbers.
      That said, we still look like dumbasses.

      • TheSaint says:

        All you needed was a larger Thanksgiving table that could seat about 107. Oh, and don’t underestimate my smartassitude. It’s a bit narcissistic to think you have that cornered; however, I do tip my hat to your abilities.

        By the way, don’t forget that Monday is Presidents Day.

  2. Foofram says:

    I never even attended third grade. Fact. But I caught that one too. That “synergized” shit sounds like an academic version of the Great Crapture. Although I am all in favor of putting administrators to work.

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