Delaware State University, a Dover-based HBCU, has announced it is planning to axe more than 25 percent of its programs with an eye toward optimizing stagnating resources.
The HBCU is “deactivating” 12 undergraduate and 11 graduate majors out of the 82 currently offered at the public university, according to the Delaware State News. The programs slated for elimination have low enrollments, and their removal will allow for increased investment in high-demand programs with the potential to increase revenue, officials have said.
“We have to make the decision in the best interest of our students and the taxpayers of Delaware and the best interest of the university as a whole,” university President Harry L. Williams told the Delaware News Journal.
The programs carded for deactivation were chosen during deliberations of the school’s Academic Program Prioritization Initiative Task Force, which was established more than two years ago.
“They were tough decisions to make so we took longer than expected to evaluate all the information we had and we held many discussions to come to our final conclusion,” Carlos Holmes, director of News Services at DSU, told State News.
Holmes said not all the 76 courses in the affected programs, such as romance languages and education, will be cut as some may be necessary for general requirements or for other majors. He also said the changes will not result in any layoffs.
However, according to the Journal, the decision has angered several faculty members with specializations in the now-defunct programs and some departments plan to lobby the board to reconsider.
Delaware State is a 125-year-old land-grant university established May 15, 1891, by the Delaware General Assembly. Its current enrollment is 4,644 students, according to its website