Strategic Resource Allocation Recommendations Released

Several Majors, Minors to be Phased Out

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Photo by Samantha Hince

Students coming back to campus after Fall Break received an email from President Bushman sharing recommendations for program phase-outs and restructuring as part of the Strategic Resource Allocation.

Samantha Hince, Associate News Editor

Bridgewater, Va. – Bridgewater College leadership shared their Strategic Resource Allocation recommendations with the Board of Trustees in a report that was released to students on Oct. 6.

Six academic majors have been recommended for discontinuation: applied chemistry, French, mathematics, nutritional science, philosophy and religion and physics. Five minors were also recommended for phase-out: applied chemistry, French, German, physical chemistry and physics. In addition, 32 tracks, concentrations and emphases, such as the administration management concentration and the environmental chemistry emphasis, will also be discontinued. 

“It was a bit of a shock at first, seeing how much they were cutting,” said Sophomore computer science major Seth Spire. “It was a little concerning to see that the whole mathematics department is going to be shrunk down. I do have friends who are math majors. They’re being told they’re going to have their majors stick around long enough for them to get their degree, but everything’s always in question of how it’s going to actually play out. It’s just a stressful time for everyone,” said Spire. 

President Bushman’s email to students on Oct. 6 included a few FAQs and pointed students to MyBC, where they could find both the full recommendations report and an FAQ document.

The next step in the process will be for the board of trustees to vote on the recommendations at their November meeting. Once the report suggestions have been approved, the phase-out and restructuring processes will begin. 

The SRA recommendations were developed by faculty task forces and finalized by President Bushman, Bridgewater College’s vice presidents and the Director of Athletics Curt Kendall. The recommendations include both academic and administrative program changes. 

In the athletics department, men’s golf and the dance team are recommended to be discontinued, effective June 30, 2021. The Eagle Club, founded in 1994 to support athletics and provide funding for special projects, will be replaced by a new model. 

The equestrian program will also be downsized. The Bridgewater College Equestrian Center will be sold and the team will be cut to 8-12 members, who will compete with the National Collegiate Equestrian Association, instead of the current IHSA program. 

“A lot is still really unknown about what the equestrian program will look like,” said Melanie Vest, assistant to the director of riding. “Hopefully we will be given more details in the coming weeks. At the current time we will remain positive and keep riding.”

Academic Affairs changes include restructuring the academic division model from four divisions to three divisions, as well as restructuring library services and discontinuing the Community Engagement and Sustainability program. 

The administration also recommends restructuring programs in Student Life (Campus Recreation, Student Activities, and Residence Life), Institutional Advancement (Annual Giving, Alumni Relations, and Advancement Services), Campus Dining Services, Financial Aid, Facilities, the Campus Store and Budgeting and Reporting within Finance. 

The report mentioned cost-saving changes that have been made recently, including outsourcing custodial services to Aramark and changing vendors for payroll and HR processing, both of which occurred in summer 2019. 

Bushman’s email invited students to a town hall on Tuesday, Oct. 13, at 7 p.m. for students to learn more about the SRA process and ask questions of the administration. Students need to register ahead of time using the link in the email, which will be held via Zoom webinar.