LBCC employees, students, treat for shock following personnel cuts
Published: Thursday, May 10, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, May 9, 2012 19:05
Employees, students and administrators are beginning to deal with the impact and necessary reorganization of college services after a unanimous vote by the Board of Trustees to lay off 55 employees and reduction in hours of 96 others.
Gaither Lowenstein, vice president of academic affairs, said, "We won't know until the classified employees exercise their bumping options. The deadline is May 15. Then HR (human resources) takes a couple of weeks and decides when they know where everybody is going. By June 1, we'll know, management will know what exactly they're working with.
Rodney Rodriguez, Instructional Specialist at the LAC Writing and Reading Success Center, said, "At this point we have been informed our instructors won't have as many hours for teaching in the center."
Roridguez said there will probably be 25 percent less. "They're in charge of workshops and individual or supplemental learning attached to English 1, 105 and 801. … Some of these cuts happened last year. We were able to get some things back. This year the cuts are more severe. We're hoping it will happen again.
There will be less of an instructor presence. Having more is always helpful, it’s really important.”
A total of 492 international and domestic students had signed a petition asking the Board of Trustees and administrators to re-evaluate their decision to eliminate international student program manager Nassef Girgis.
The response by Vice President of Student Services Greg Peterson and Dean of Student Affairs Connie Sears stated they had no intention to cut the program and would notify all the international students of the final changes to the program.
At the April 24 Board of Trustees meeting, Natalie Ly, 21, a business management major, spoke on the agenda item. She thanked Peterson and Sears for their response, but pointed out they did not address the international students’ main concern.
Ly presented facts about the accomplishments of the program and the benefits brought to the college, including more than $1 million in tuition every year, the 90 percent graduation rate and zero percent dropout rate.
Ly said, “We came here with a high educational goal. Please don’t make us transfer to other colleges or dis-promote LBCC.” Ly was referring to a campaign of emailing study-abroad agencies to stop recruiting prospective students to LBCC.
Girgis has since told Ly and the other students to halt their anti-LBCC campaign and to move forward, Ly said. Girgis told Ly it was a good experience of civic engagement for the students. Ly said, “I have never thought I could be so involved in political affairs.”