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Faculty Plan Vote Of "No Confidence" In Board Of Regents For Higher Education

Ryan Caron King
Mark Ojakian leads the Connecticut Board of Regents for Higher Education.

The faculty senate of Central Connecticut State University plans to take a vote of no confidence in the Board of Regents for Higher Education and its president, Mark Ojakian. Earlier this month the Board adopted the framework of Ojakian’s sweeping plan for administrative consolidations in the statewide system.

CCSU sociology professor Stephen Adair is vice-chair of the Faculty Advisory Committee to the Board of Regents. Speaking on WNPR's Where We Live, he said faculty members were surprised by a lack of transparent deliberation that went into passing the plan.

"Virtually all administrative functions that provide a basis for revenues and finance and financial aid and personnel will all be controlled inside of a central bureaucracy," said Adair. "I think faculty are concerned about their ability to create innovation on their campuses, create new programs and do our own kinds of assessments for how we can improve our institutions."

Ojakian said his proposal is part of a process that he hopes will include participation from all stakeholders from the 17 state colleges and universities.

"I am ready, willing, and able to include whoever wants to be part of the process," he said. "I would just point out that we have a very serious financial problem in our system, very serious financial problem in our state, and unless we take some corrective action to eliminate our structural deficit, we’re going to continue to impact the services and the education we provide to our students."

But not everyone is as hopeful. The Hartford Courant reports that Central's no-confidence resolution includes a statement that says that the faculty senate there will not participate in the plan’s implementation, and considers it “undemocratic."

Diane Orson is a special correspondent with Connecticut Public. She is a longtime reporter and contributor to National Public Radio. Her stories have been heard on Morning Edition, All Things Considered, Weekend Edition and Here And Now. Diane spent seven years as CT Public Radio's local host for Morning Edition.
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