HomeTop StoriesMore than 90 program cuts are critical to St. Cloud State's survival,...

More than 90 program cuts are critical to St. Cloud State’s survival, the president says

ST. CLOUD, Min. – St. Cloud State University, one of Minnesota’s largest schools, is preparing to cut 94 programs and dozens of faculty members.

In an announcement made Tuesday, SCSU President Larry Lee said lower enrollment prompted the need to cut dozens of programs and positions: 42 majors, 50 minors and 54 faculty members.

“Sometimes when you get news like this, people will wonder, ‘Is everything OK in the St. Cloud State?’ The answer is yes,” said Lee.

Affected programs include physics, sociology and several music majors.

According to the Save the St. Cloud State University Music Department petition, which has more than 3,900 signatures, the department has been “hit with massive and disproportionate budget cuts.”

“For some of those courses, if we look at the cost of the instructor teaching the course, every time a student registers for a class, we lose $1,100,” Lee said.

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WCCO


He says the program reduces the impact on just 8% of students. In spring 2024, a school spokesperson said 26 students were enrolled in their music programs.

Lee says the school has suffered a $32 million deficit over the past two years.

Students already enrolled in a discount program can complete their degree.

Greg Bertrand just completed his master’s degree in Educational Leadership and Technology, which was among the programs that had to be cut.

“At first I was quite surprised and shocked. I was not prepared for the program that I had worked on for so long to be canceled,” Bertrand said. “When I started to really evaluate the university, I understand why my program as a whole was cut. If you want to help keep the university afloat, you have to trim those branches a little bit.”

Lee says the cuts will allow for better investments in the university.

“St. Cloud State University is a strong university with a bright future,” Lee said. “We are now in a difficult moment, where we have to align our expenses with our revenues.”

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