University discusses plan to combine colleges

University discusses plan to combine colleges

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - Big changes could be coming to Arkansas State University regarding administration. The university is discussing a plan to combine colleges.

Vice Chancellor Lynita Cooksey said that it is all about making the university more efficient with the funding it receives and keeping up with changes around other areas on campus.

Cooksey said, "It's a new era for the university, we've changed tremendously within the last 5 to 10 years so we need to look at our structure."

Cooksey said that the administrative structure is dated and needs to be improved to keep up with changing times.

Cooksey said, "We need to look at them from under todays lens and not the lens that may be anywhere from 10 to 30 years old, which is some of these structures go back even further than that as far as the administrative structure."

Arkansas State University said that it isn't the only school that is going through this process either, other schools, even within the natural state, have done this in the past and have found it to work.

Cooksey said, "A lot of universities now are taking second and third looks at everything that they do just to make sure that not only are we being good stewards of our resources, but that we're giving the best product that we can to our students in terms of their academic programs."

While Cooksey said there could be a lot of big changes in the future, she said it would not have a negative effect on faculty.

Cooksey said, "Promotion retention and tenure process would remain the same, I would think that it would probably in most cases have some very positive impacts."

Cooksey said that this is new to the table, and there is still a long road ahead before these changes would be made.

Cooksey said, "We're really just starting this discussion, and so it will be on going and I'm sure that we won't have all of the answers at the early part of the year, we won't have all of the answers, but I think we will know a lot more than what we know today, and I think it will at least provide a foundation to get started on to sort of see where we need to head."

Cooksey said there are pros and cons, but the administration is working with the faculty senate to get an accurate representation from the university to ensure the right decisions are made.

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