Budget cuts: prudent for the long-term or short term?

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Photo by Patrick Vitale

When you wake up on a weekday morning and march off to class, what do you take for granted? On Wednesday morning, I always stop by the library to print my Lit Trad homework. Most people don’t consider asking themselves if they’ll be able to efficiently print their assignments, but the politics department is forced to question this daily.

Are you trying to recruit your friends to sign a lease together for next semester or are you just wondering if you’ll make it back to campus? An increasing number of student employees who have just been laid off are forced to ask themselves how to compensate for the deficit of next semester’s bill. 

As the University of Dallas’ budget cut’s effects are now felt within the community, especially among student employees who lost their jobs, questions are being asked as to  the prudence of the administration’s monetary decisions. 

Upon realizing that previous management made an oversight in budgeting, UD’s administration cut smaller things first, like sprinkler systems, and then carefully cut department and student employment budgets afterward. 

Reducing overspending by half-a-million dollars is significantly preferable to having greener grass.

Executive Vice President Dr. John Plotts says that this rather limited spending is a short-term situation. “It’s a budget cut; it’s not anything to be concerned about long term,” Plotts said. 

These budget cuts are certainly being felt all over the school and bear many negative consequences, but it is better to suffer slightly now than to face a monetary crisis later.

Working to safeguard the financial health and stability of the school is vital to ensure that UD can continue to fulfill its mission in years to come.

As a university, we must accept that we cannot expect to succeed later if our administration decides to spend money we do not have. 

Supporting the budget cuts for the sake of the university’s overall wellbeing does not dismiss the struggles of the individual student. As a student who dumps every paycheck into bills and tuition, I cannot help but feel for students who relied on the income of their on-campus jobs, and who are now feeling the sting of the cuts.

In order to increase opportunities for student employment and the restoration of student positions, ideas for alternate forms of income, such as fundraisers, need to be broached. Not only would this assist individual students who need such positions, but it would also lift up the entire student community. 

Instituting a new and improved Resident Housing Association (RHA), or some organization of the sort to consistently create meaningful programming for the community, would benefit all, not just the individuals it would employ. 

However, if RHA is to be reconstituted, improvements are necessary. RHA’s (or its new spinoff’s) spending budget absolutely would need to be reevaluated so that it might create its own source of revenue with which to organize programming.

As we are all independent thinkers of UD, we ought to take this chance to brainstorm ideas and work with the school to establish, or reestablish, organizations and positions at UD  as much for the whole community as for their own sake.

UD’s administration was prudent in their budgeting decisions, making the most of the money they had. As the whole school, administration, faculty and students work through this semester with their lowered budgets, everyone should rest easy, knowing that UD will continue to thrive. In the meantime, efforts to maintain everyone’s financial well being, especially the students’, should be continued with fervor.

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