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EDITORIAL: CMU academic restructuring starts 2017, make sure the administration hears you

President George Ross, left, and William Weideman, right, listening to the speaker answer a question at the Board of Trustees meeting on Sept. 20th in the President’s Conference Room in the Bovee University Center.

Twenty years ago, Central Michigan University reviewed and reorganized the academic structure of our university. It resulted in one new academic college. This year, another reorganization effort was announced. It was met with some push back, to say the least.

CMU faculty and students expressed concerns and disappointment over the way it was announced, feeling they were not given any warning. This feeling is understandable. With an undertaking like this, many are unsure about what this means for their jobs and areas of study. 

For anyone who feels the same way: now is the time to speak out.

At 2:30 p.m. on Friday , Oct. 6, 2017, in the Park Library Auditorium, the Academic Organizational Structure Review Open Forum is scheduled. It is a way for anyone concerned to offer their grievances, complaints or suggestions.

President George Ross promised there would be a chance for public comments. 

This is it. Take advantage of this opportunity.

Senior Vice Provost for Academic Reorganization Initiative Ian Davison is leading the review and reorganization process. The goal for the process to be finished in an aggressive and achievable time frame.

Davison expects the review to be completed and the recommendations approved by the Board of Trustees in spring of the 2018-2019 academic year. The implementation of the approved recommendations will take place during 2018-2019.

This process is part of the Academic Strategic Plan, the Board of Trustees adopted in June 2017. Three committees, Departmental and College Organization, Academic Support and Responsibility-Centered Management (RCM) will be created with students and faculty chairing them. 

The purpose of this is to review CMU’s academic and administrative structure; modify undergraduate degrees to reduce the credits required for graduation from 124 to 120; and strengthen business and community ties.

If you’re a freshman and are unsure about what this might mean for your degree, be there. If you’re a faculty member and want to ask questions about how this will affect your department, be there.

"The entire CMU community will be engaged as an invaluable source of ideas and suggestions and to provide comments and feedback on recommendations", Davison said.

For anyone who cannot make it Friday at 2:30 p.m., there is a way to make suggestions and comments to be made online

This process is ongoing until 2022, but this year is when you have the most say.

Ross promised transparency and this open forum is it. 

We hope that anyone who can attend does. Make your voice heard.