Apr 9, 2019
Goodwell, Okla. — Oklahoma Panhandle State University has sustained yet another budget cut. The legislature voted to enact an additional 0.66 percent cut to higher education, after multiple attempts to pass a neutral budget failed. For Panhandle State, this reduction amounts to $37,326.
The University has already absorbed a loss of over $358,000 through the combination of a 4.5 percent cut in state allocations and $146,323 in bond debt service in the current year’s budget.
President Dr. Tim Faltyn said, “This budget reduction, on top of the previous year’s reductions, makes it difficult to provide the quality faculty and resources our students and community deserve.”
These current cuts, in addition to annual and midyear budget reductions in fiscal years 2017 and 2016 have led to a 24% decrease in state appropriated funding for Panhandle State since 2015. This 1.78-million-dollar loss to the University called for drastic measures in order to maintain operations.
Unfilled personnel positions, removal of non-mission critical functions, closure of the Guymon Classroom Building and the golf course in Goodwell, as well as the implementation of a four-day work week in June and July are among the savings measures implemented in the past several years.
“We must continue to focus on our mission critical functions and areas of excellence in order to grow,” said Faltyn. “We must also remain committed to providing our students with exceptional educational opportunities.”
Several efforts have been implemented across campus to increase revenue. Marketing and community relations have been a key focus to attract new students and new sources of private and public support for the University’s mission.
Those efforts have paid off as Panhandle State welcomed its largest freshman class in the school’s history in the Fall and more than $2 million has been raised in grants, scholarships, and private donations in the past two years.
“Our team’s efforts in increasing enrollment, securing funds to transform our facilities and provide financial assistance to our students, as well as modernizing our academic and student support services has been essential to our positive momentum,” said Faltyn.
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