There are critical differences between a corporation and a university, but those would be hard to find when looking at the way our university has decided to handle the upcoming budget cuts.
While a corporation is only concerned with its bottom line and cuts are made to those areas losing money, a university is supposed to be holistic in financial woes so as to not compromise one academic discipline over another. Yet at ACU, a supposed liberal arts university, it is the liberal arts that stand to lose everything with the pending cuts. While more than five departments in Arts and Sciences will be merged or realigned, the Colleges of Biblical Studies and Business Administration are left disproportionately unaffected. From a corporate perspective this is understandable, as those departments have the most students, alumni donors and attachment to university image.
However, these actions are unconscionable in the context of a university where a broad liberal arts education means all departments and disciplines are valued equally. Thus in the context of Christian higher education where stewardship is the goal, the long-term preservation of a quality education in all disciplines should be the aim. As a sociology major who will be pursuing my Ph.D. in sociology I’m saddened to see my department dissolved completely and my degree merged with another separate discipline. This shows an utter lack of respect for the social sciences by treating our degrees and departments like chess pieces. If ACU becomes a university that only values business and Bible majors, then it can no longer claim to be exceptional, innovative or real. Moving forward I would urge the university to reconsider these cuts and value all students and faculty, or it should go ahead and file for incorporation.