It’s getting repetitive; we know. But the fact is budget cuts are impacting every aspect of life in Colorado, especially higher education. While every university in Colorado has a number of things to consider when making reductions, CSU has the added responsibility of being a land-grant university.
Land grant universities were established by the Morrill Act in 1862, which provided states with land that they could sell to subsidize educational institutions. They provide agricultural education and provide community-based services and research centers.
“The charge to these institutions was to provide needed specialized education and to take the education more effectively off campus,” said Mary Gray, the associate director of Cooperative Extension.
Cooperative Extension and the Agricultural Experiment Station were established to help CSU fulfill their mission as a land grant university. As with so many organizations and departments on this campus, they are taking serious cuts, closing offices and centers around Colorado and cutting jobs. Each department is losing $1.6 million from their budgets. Many of these cuts were effective Tuesday with the start of the new fiscal year.
We’re not the ones reviewing possible reductions, so we’re not saying this isn’t where reductions should be made. Every organization, college and person at CSU helps to fulfill its mission, and nobody deserves to lose their job just because they don’t do agricultural research. But it stands to reason that as the only land grant university in Colorado, we have even more to consider when making cuts to programs. We need to remember that we have an obligation to serve the Colorado community from Gunnison to Fort Collins and everything in between.