By JABRIA WEBB
The Board of Trustees met on Jan. 25 to make certain decisions regarding the future of Georgetown College. As mentioned in a previous article, the college is facing the challenge of finding a way to reduce its budget while ensuring that the student experience remains fully supported. One issue is a higher number of employees than the school can reasonably support. Already some staff positions have been trimmed, and it is now necessary to decrease the number of faculty members. The goal teacher-to-student ratio of our college is 12:1, which has been found to be optimal for learning in an institution of this type. Currently, our ration is near 10.5:1. This means that of the 101 faculty members currently employed at Georgetown college, 9 of them have to go.
But, please, don’t worry Tigers! Our Board of Trustees has decided to reach this goal through attrition. This means that rather than letting go of any of our beloved professors, the college will simply wait for professors to retire or to leave for other facilities of their own choice. Once the professors have moved on, their positions will not be filled.
We will be expecting an increase in tuition for the 2013-2014 school year (Note: Tuition has gone up every year for at least the last decade so no one should be surprised); however, a specific number was not divulged. In an effort to counteract the decreasing class sizes, Georgetown is taking steps to encourage enrollment for the next academic school year. This year’s freshman class size was around 100 students smaller than average, which is a major reason for the budgeting issues confronting the college.
This year, Georgetown will be hosting an Admitted Student Day on March 25. This event is designed to encourage students who have been admitted but have not committed to attend Georgetown College next fall. The college also has given out and in all likelihood will continue to give out more scholarships than usual to help students who are feeling the sting of rising tuition and falling financial aid.
Other matters discussed were renovations on the chapel to take place for next year and the recent controversy regarding the discrimination clause. It is well known by now that this clause does not include protection against discrimination based on sexual orientation. Though the Board did not decide to revise the clause as of yet, they have agreed to meet with concerned members of the Georgetown College community to discuss the issue.