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U of Akron trustees meet amid continuing controversy
Monthly meeting is expected to draw protesters over university spending
by WKSU's M.L. SCHULTZE


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M.L. Schultze
 
Protesters plan to demonstrate at the Student Union, where the university trustees will be meeting tomorrow morning.
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The University of Akron trustees are meeting tomorrow morning amid protests and big questions about cutbacks and spending priorities. WKSU’s M.L. Schultze has more.

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The trustees will meet in room 339 at the Student Union and go into executive session at 8 a.m. then come into public session.

A protest over cuts at the university is planned in front of the Student Union at 9 a.m.

Students, faculty and community members are taking aim at the $950,000 the university spent to renovate the president’s house, as well as questions about an $840,000 no-bid contract it signed with a start-up firm to coach freshmen to graduation. Both come at a time when the university is making $40 million in cuts, including eliminating 213 positions.

 Faculty Senate President Bill Rich has said some of the current fiscal  problems were years in the making. 

“There were some other decisions to build that resulted in some excess capacity that probably occurred because people had some unrealistic hopes about what would happen with enrollment in the face of declining demographics, that is fewer and fewer students graduating from high school.” 

But he also questions some of the priorities of the current administration: Including the continuation of the football program that costs the university an estimated $8 million a year.

 

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