Monday, July 15, 2019

Major budget cuts hit University of Alaska system

Also in this week's C&EN, a brief article about the cuts to the University of Alaska system, with an update from the perspective of UA-Fairbanks' department chair (by Andrea Widener):
The chemistry department at the school’s main campus in Fairbanks expects to be hit by the cuts, says department chair Thomas Green, but they don’t know exactly the impact yet. “This is all thrown at us all at once,” he tells C&EN from a rural Alaska beach where he is trying to keep up with the news while on vacation. “We are sort of in limbo now.”  
Before the failed override attempt, the university had already implemented a hiring and travel freeze and sent furlough notices to staff. Now they are waiting for a more detailed plan. “Of course everybody is worried,” Green says. The Fairbanks chemistry department includes 13 faculty and multiple staff, including a safety officer, stock room manager, NMR lab manager, and part-time administrative assistant. Green also doesn’t know what might happen to funding for the school’s 35 graduate students, about 15–17 of whom are supported through teaching assistantships each year. The university’s Board of Regents will meet July 15 to plan next steps.
Best wishes to all affected. 

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