Wright State University’s budget crisis sparks on-campus protests

Wright State University Nutter Center. (WDTN Photo/Justin Kraus)
Wright State University Nutter Center. (WDTN Photo/Justin Kraus)

FAIRBORN, Ohio (WDTN) – Wright State students protested on campus Thursday for what they claim is the administration’s mishandling of money.

The University has been struggling to balance its budget. It’s cut 20 full-time jobs in the last 4 months. Thursday, students made signs, demanding answers from the administration on spending and the cuts they say are hurting their education.

Wright State students are calling for more accountability and less cuts.

“I don’t think they should be cutting our faculty,” Freshman Kayla Mosley said. “Because that cuts our classes and that makes it harder for us to get our education.”

Mosley was one of about 2 dozen students marching through campus wanting answers.

In June, university officials announced that they expected to overspend their 2016 budget by $34.2 million. They also announced departments would be cutting $19.7 million from their budget.

Thursday’s march ended in the Office of Wright State University President David Hopskins–who wasn’t on campus Thursday according to a university spokesperson.

The university’s administration denied our request for an interview, but released the following statement:

“It is important to our university community that students, faculty and staff are engaged in the budget remediation process. The recommendations that have emerged so far from the collaborative process have taken time and considerable thought. The decisions that have been made have not been easy and future difficult decisions remain. It is important that all voices be heard.

Faculty members have been regular attendees at our Board of Trustees and other public meetings while the budget remediation process has progressed. We welcome their input and that of our students. We will work together as a community to align the budget as Wright State pursues its mission of providing outstanding educational opportunities to our students.”

“If the students aren’t fully informed,” Wright State Associate Professor Hope Jennings said. “Not only as community members, but as citizens. They deserve that information.”

Getting the information they want hasn’t happened according to senior Carly Perkins.

“We are paying attention to the budget crisis and we know,” Senior Carly Perkins said. “What’s going on and we know that they are mishandling the funds and we’re just coming here to demand accountability.”

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