Arts & Sciences spent $30M in Reserves, is $1.2M in red
By RON AIKEN
In a statement released yesterday by Robert Cox, director of the University of South Carolina’s Walker Institute of International Studies, the budget crisis currently affecting the College of Arts & Sciences due to overspending is negatively impacting the college’s ability to educate its students, Cox writes in a letter dated Oct. 13 and addressed to “Friends of the Walker Institute.”
The Walker Institute is housed within the College of Arts & Sciences, which Quorum previously has reported has blown through $30 million in reserves since 2012 and currently faces a budget deficit of $1.2 million. The institute is home for the university’s new bachelors in global studies program and, according to its web page, “works in cooperation with faculty and research units in various colleges and departments of the university to facilitate research on public policy issues. It provides consultative and training services and undertakes special research projects for governmental and nongovernmental organizations, foundations, and public sector agencies.”
It also, according to its web page, coordinates research funding and hosts conferences and national and international speakers every year.
Or at least it did.
In addition to 10 percent across-the-board cuts, cuts in supplemental pay for directors and graduate assistantships mean a reduction of 37 percent of the institute’s budget, which “severely resrtict our ability to undertake programming this year,” Cox writes. He said the institute will be offering about “half the number of awards we were able to provide in previous years” and fewer invited speakers.
These cuts mirror what is taking place across the university’s largest college that educates the most students on campus and currently has a moratorium on new hires across 20 departments and 50 interdisciplinary programs, centers and institutes plus reduced or restricted faculty travel for conferences.