Tuesday, March 10, 1998

UH's European
literature, languages,
could fall to budget ax

A faculty committee suggests
those areas for budget cuts

By Mary Adamski

The prospect of cutting back or completely deleting European language and literature courses from the University of Hawaii-Manoa catalog is one of the possibilities proposed in a search for ways to meet state budget cuts.

"A faculty committee has recommended that, but no decision has been made," said Austin Dias, chairman of the European language and literature department at the Manoa campus. "That was in a draft. We haven't heard their final recommendation. Everybody is very nervous.

"It would be difficult to imagine a university without European languages." Dias said the committee is made up of research faculty rather than instructional faculty.

Dean O. Smith, interim senior vice president and executive vice chancellor, will report to the UH Board of Regents March 19 on the proposals that have surfaced during a months-long discussion of the budget by faculty committees.

Cheryl Ernst, UH communications director, said: "The budget situation has been such that people are extremely nervous. Many fear their programs may be on the chopping block.

"I could understand concern in European languages, since one of legs of the university mission statement talks about our Asian-

Pacific focus. That could add to some nervousness.

"At this time, there are no plans to close any programs," Ernst said. "Such a decision would have to go to the Board of Regents. The president has the authority to stop new admissions to a program for up to two years, but to limit any longer than that or to eliminate a program needs a Board of Regents decision."

Ernst said faculty committees "have been looking campus-wide at what we do, what's critical. There are discussion and analyses going on regarding how budget cuts can be accommodated."

Consolidation of departments and programs are among the possibilities, she said.

"That committee has not completed its report yet," she said. "Any report they make would be strictly advisory."

Dias said there are 1,900 students enrolled in European language and literature courses each semester.

The general education requirements for a bachelor's degree include language credits and literature courses. Nine European languages, including the classical Latin and Greek, are taught at the university.

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