Vice president for Student Enrollment and Engagement, Dr. Soumitra Ghosh, attended the Student Government Association meeting on Tuesday night to discuss the current financial situation of Quincy University with the Student Senate.
“The primary aspect of the challenges that the university is facing is financial,” Ghosh said.
The Quincy University Board of Trustees met Nov. 19, 2016, to discuss plans on how to manage a 5 million dollar deficit the university is facing.
“Leading up to the meeting, several committees met on a regular basis and did a lot of analysis and discussion to create a set of suggestions for the board to look at,” Ghosh said.
Ghosh explained that after examining committee suggestions, the board developed a five-year plan to raise approximately 7 million dollars in fundraising. The board members have elected to raise 1 million dollars amongst themselves to aid in financial recovery.
Senior, Jordan Ogle, asked Ghosh what the changes meant for university employees. Ghosh responded that the university is expected to make it’s first round of employee cuts staring on Dec. 9. The position eliminations are expected to take place in phases, over the course of the five year recovery period.
“Some people will no longer be able to continue with us. It is a very unfortunate reality, but given the magnitude of our challenges, it is going to happen, and it is tremendously heartbreaking,” Ghosh said.
Ghosh further highlighted the administrative changes made by the board at the Nov. 19th meeting.
Tom Ponto, Quincy University’s chief financial officer, was named chief operating officer after the faculty vote of no confidence in President Robert Gervasi. However, Ponto elected to serve as the CFO, and the board named Phil Connover as the new, interim COO. President Gervasi, will continue to make his primary focus on fundraising on behalf of the university.
Freshman, Mary Argana, inquired about the impact the changes will have on the classroom experience.
“Some of the changes you will immediately begin to see are how classes are delivered and what percentage of classes are available online,” Ghosh responded.
The University has not determined whether or not certain majors will be be cut, but Ghosh explained that the university’s focus is on providing students with majors that are in high demand and will land them a job in the workforce after graduation.
Ghosh also mentioned that students can expect to see education-centered changes as early as the spring 2017 semester.