A quick look at Moorhead’s final cuts

I’ve been trying to wheel around and get updates on several campuses that were reporting potential budget cuts this past academic year.

Minnesota State University – Moorhead is cutting staff and merging departments as part of a multimillion-dollar budget cut.

About two dozen tenured faculty and more than three dozen adjunct professors are leaving the university through a combination of cuts and early retirement.

Spokesman David Wahlberg says it’s phasing out five low-enrollment programs, including American multicultural studies and medical laboratory science.

Wahlberg says Moorhead’s enrollment has declined 10 percent since 2010. The campus also suffered from years of reductions in state funding. He says the cuts prevented a $5 million deficit projected for next year.

Although the bulk of the cuts were on the academic side, Wahlberg said previous budget cycles had focused on staff and administration.

He says he expects Moorhead’s actions will soon play out nationally.

Wahlberg told me:

“A lot of campuses are going to be going through a process this coming year that we went through last year as they also try to respond to national demographics that resulted in fewer high-school graduates and reduced state appropriations.”