New Priorities for the College

Dean announces reallocation plan

By Nancy Seideman

This fall, Emory College of Arts and Sciences begins a multiyear plan to bolster current academic strengths and allocate resources to new and emerging areas, announced Dean Robin Forman in September.

The plan, developed over four years in collaboration with faculty and top administrators, calls for investment in the arts and sciences, including departments across the humanities, social and natural sciences; and in new, interdisciplinary areas, including contemporary China studies, digital and new media studies, and neuroscience.

The college also will close three academic departments and several programs to accommodate these priorities, Forman said. The departments of physical education and visual arts, the division of educational studies, and the program in journalism are being closed, and will be phased out during the next several years. Graduate programs in economics, educational studies, Spanish, and the Graduate Institute of Liberal Arts are also suspending new admissions.

The financial challenges of the past several years have stretched the college’s resources, said Forman, but “these are fundamentally academic decisions about the size and scope of our mission.”

President James Wagner endorsed the plan, saying he respects Forman’s “willingness to go back to first principles, look at each department and program afresh, and begin the process of reallocating resources for emerging needs and opportunities.”

Tenured faculty who are affected are being offered comparable positions in other departments, Forman said, and all current students will be able to complete the degree programs in which they are now enrolled.

Forman said the departments and programs affected by these changes have made “important and fundamental contributions to our campus, and they have passionate supporters. . . . There is nothing about this process that has been easy. However, we have a primary obligation to our students to allocate resources in a way that will allow us to train leaders of the century to come.”

For more, visit www.news.emory.edu/EmoryCollegePlan.

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