Community Colleges in Western Kentucky Reducing Staff and Faculty
Community colleges in western Kentucky are cutting faculty and staff, shortening contracts, eliminating programs and making changes to their facilities in an effort to reduce projected budget deficits. The cuts come in the face of declining enrollment and a reduction in state appropriations.
Paducah’s West Kentucky Community and Technical College president Barbara Veazey says declining enrollment is a national trend. WKCTC enrollment is down to 6,500 students from a spike of 7,500 in 2012. The college is looking at a $1.4 million budget shortfall, has eliminated six positions, and is leaving 27 unfilled.
Hopkinsville Community College president Jay Allen says his college is facing a $1.2 million shortfall and has shortened 20 contracts, left 14 positions unfilled, and eliminated six positions. Allen says the cuts will have a “tremendous impact on faculty and staff,” leaving the college with less talent to accomplish its mission.
Madisonville Community College interim president Deborah Cox says her college has shortened 17 contracts, left 15 vacancies unfilled, and eliminated two positions.
Owensboro Community and Technical College president Scott Williams says his college is looking at a $1.3 million shortfall, is leaving 15 positions unfilled, and has cut eight positions.
Henderson Community College president Kris Williams says 10 positions have been left unfilled and three have been cut. Williams says the college has also moved to a four-day work week for the summer and will close its fine arts center in January to manage energy usage. Williams says she expects to know more about the college’s financial situation after the Board of Regents meeting in June.