Southern New Model For Fund-Cut Schools

Ann McClure's picture
Friday, September 28, 2012

As Louisiana’s colleges limp along after losing nearly half-a-billion dollars in state funding over the past four years, Southern University may emerge as the model for how universities restructure themselves going forward, higher education leaders said Wednesday.

Representatives from the state’s four public college systems appeared in front of the Louisiana Board of Regents for the annual meeting where they discuss how they previously spent money and present their new spending plans to the state’s top higher education board.

Regents Finance Chairman Bubba Rasberry, of Shreveport, said Southern’s performance over the past year has been “shockingly good,” as the university spent about eight months slimming down after declaring a financial emergency called exigency in October.

Southern System President Ronald Mason said the goal is for the university to transform itself into a new kind of institution by focusing on the most popular degree programs and attracting larger numbers of students through online education offerings.

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