Wednesday, January 16th, 2019

Staff layoffs put on hold until May 31

Posted on April 28, 2014 by Sidney Dritz in News

USM library employee Adinah Barnett spoke at last Friday’s #USMFuture rally in support of staff members facing layoffs at the university. Barnett addressed the budget crisis which prompted the past few months’ flurry of cuts, saying, “There’s plenty of money. It’s just all going up, and it’s not coming back down.” Barnett then agreed with previous speaker and student Jules Purnell, “I do agree that cuts should come from the top.”

A student rally last Friday in support of USM staff facing layoffs attached a few faces to the rumors of shadowy eliminations of USM staff members as a part of the university’s most recent attempt to cut costs. Though the majority of the faculty retrenchments and eliminations announced as part of the same initiative have […]

Retrenchment Retrospective: Dean Kuzma explains criteria for cuts

Posted on April 21, 2014 by Sidney Dritz in News

Lyn Kuzma, dean of the College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences in her office last October.

Though the retrenchments and position discontinuances that were announced last March have since been rescinded, the process by which faculty members were selected for layoffs is still seen as unclear. One of the reasons that understanding the process is important, according to Dean Lynn Kuzma of the College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, is […]

Stonecoast MFA may soon be out of a house

Posted on April 21, 2014 by Sidney Dritz in News

 Faculty and students of the Stonecoast MFA Program for creative writing take a lunch break in one of their week-long residencies, which faculty and alumni describe as one of the more rewarding parts of the program. There are two residencies per year as a part of the program, which involve intensive workshopping at peer-editing sessions.

One of USM’s most prestigious pieces of architecture may have reached the point where it’s more trouble than it’s worth to the university, according to a recent University of Maine System maintenance report. When President Kalikow announced her first round of proposed cuts in February, one of the considered cuts was the Stone House, home […]

News Analysis: Same deficit, different decade

Posted on April 14, 2014 by Sidney Dritz in News

A cartoon from the Vol. 4 Issue No. 5, March 1, 1976

As a university news source, the Free Press tries to do a few different things. The ones that are the most relevant to our day to day work for publication are to cover news for and about the USM population more closely than community news outlets and to be a showcase for student work, but […]

Recent grads discuss their level of career preparation post-USM

Posted on April 14, 2014 by dakotawing, Kirsten Sylvain, and Sidney Dritz in News

Recent graduate Phil Shelley (right) has been active in efforts organized by the #USMFuture group to oppose faculty cuts and call for funding reform throughout Maine’s public university system. The photo above was taken last Thursday at a rally in Monument Square, Portland, which culminated in a march. Shelley told the Free Press that he was concerned that the recent cuts could devalue a USM degree.

One of the arguments made by protesters of the recently retracted faculty layoffs and the still slated for elimination program is that such cuts will significantly devalue a USM degree. “That’s the sort of thing that I worry about as a reality as I apply for grad school,” said Philip Shelley, who graduated in December. […]

CAHS talks consolidation, considers proposals to reorganize

Posted on April 07, 2014 by Sidney Dritz in News

English and women and gender studies professor Lucinda Cole objected to the proposed reorganization plan based on several points, including contract considerations and the subject of peer review.

Retrenchment and program cuts aren’t the only changes in the College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences. On March 28, the CAHS faculty debated a proposed reorganization of the college. On March 26, Provost Michael Stevenson sent out a letter to the deans of all of the colleges at USM, asking them to discuss ways […]

Colleges cope with retrenchment of faculty

Posted on April 07, 2014 by Sidney Dritz in News

Student Body President Kelsea Dunham (right) discussed her involvement in the Direction Package Advisory Board's vision committee during a meeting of the College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences faculty.

Since President Theo Kalikow announced the layoffs of twelve faculty members on Friday, March 21, the colleges of the retrenched faculty have responded by holding a series of meetings. On March 26, a group of students organized a meeting about the effects of the retrenchment on the Muskie School, and on March 28, responses to […]

Students push back against proposed program cuts

Posted on March 26, 2014 by Sidney Dritz in News

Chief Student Affairs Officer Susan Campbell (left) met with Recreation and Leisure studies department chair David Jones and students in the program to coordinate a reaction to the proposed cuts.

The difference between the faculty members who were laid off last Friday and the four programs President Kalikow proposed cutting entirely the week before is that the four degree programs are only proposed cuts, which won’t be evaluated by the board of trustees until July. The four proposed degree programs Kalikow proposed cutting are recreation […]

Muskie students respond to cuts

Posted on March 26, 2014 by Sidney Dritz in News

Earlier this evening, nearly 40 students from the Muskie School of Public Policy met with the school’s Dean Joseph McDonnell and Associate Dean Andrew Coburn to discuss what a letter drafted by four student leaders at Muskie described as the disproportionate impact last Friday’s series of faculty retrenchments had on the school. “We urge you […]

Faculty Senate votes to reject first round of cuts

Posted on March 21, 2014 by Sidney Dritz in News

Professor of English Deepika Marya makes her way into the provost's office for her meeting. Marya refused to enter without bringing protesters with her and as a result was not allowed in to receive her letter.

In a special meeting of the Faculty Senate in response to the series of faculty layoffs and program cut proposals, the Faculty Senate voted unanimously to reject the actions taken by the administration, including the layoffs and the proposed program cuts, despite its support for the idea of a metropolitan university. “I would like to […]