Loop should include, not exclude students

“CAU to Close Library School,” read the headline in the Oct. 4-10 issue of The Atlanta Voice newspaper.

How can outsiders write about and be more informed on Clark Atlanta University issues than students? If anyone ought to know, we should first.

At a Town Hall meeting in September, some very important questions were addressed and some roundabout responses were given, one of them concerning the School of Library Sciences and the Department of Africana Studies. At the time it was said that no final decisions had been made, but to the shock of some and the surprise of many, the School of Library Sciences was said to officially be closing along with the Department of Engineering.

CAU is taking “critical actions” and making strategic moves to ensure the safety and well being of students. However, the ability to effectively inform students about decisions made or that are eventually going to be made seems to be a challenge, or basically nonexistent. Outside sources – Channel 2 News, community newspapers, students in other states – are receiving vital information before tuition-paying students.

This is not only unfair; it isn’t logical. Why should someone else know about what’s happening in our house before we do?

Students are seeking a solid answer to one probing question: Is CAU the next Morris Brown College?

Why are more schools and/ or departments being closed?

Students were under the impression that after the review from the consulting agency that all CAU needed was to make a few layoffs and cut back the budget, not close entire schools and departments.

More than knowing how to fix what is happening, we would like to know the forecast for what will happen.

At the end of the school year in 2004, will there be more layoffs than planned? At the start of next fall’s semester, will more schools be closing? Will we still have a $7.5 million deficit? Will we still be seeking advice from consulting agencies recommending more cutbacks? Will we have only 250 students like our neighboring institution because everyone has either transferred or dropped out, or couldn’t afford to enroll?

Students just want to be assured that our beloved president is doing everything in his power to save us. We also want to be assured that CAU will exist and be standing strong in years to come.

CAU is the outcome of a beautiful consolidation of Clark College with Atlanta University in 1988. It is our sincere desire to see the continuation and existence of this great place continue.

Written by the editorial board of The Panther at Clark Atlanta University.