According to recent reports, Louisiana State University has officially begun the process of filing for bankruptcy.
The State of Louisiana has found itself embroiled in a deep-running economic crisis revolving around the funding of public education. As a result of this budgetary fisticuffs, LSU officials have made the decision to start the bankruptcy process.
It ought to be noted that the actual process LSU has begun to engage in is not technically bankruptcy. LSU has started composing the necessary paperwork for a financial exigency. Many reports are indicating that such a proceeding is really nothing more than academic bankruptcy.
The LSU administration has made the fateful decision to prepare the flagship university of Louisiana for a plunge into academic bankruptcy given that there is no clear legislative resolution on the horizon. Should no resolution come forth from the Louisiana State Legislature, higher public education in the state is facing a reported 82 percent cut.
Nola.com is reporting that a 82 percent cut in higher public education would obviously translate into greatly decreased funding per student. It is estimated that should the looming 82 percent cut in funding be instigated, LSU would go from having roughly $3,500.00 per undergraduate student to $660.00 per undergraduate student per annum.
Sandra Woodley, the president of the University of Louisiana system, expressed great angst in seeing the state legislature reach an academic resolution.
“We are certainly anxious to see the budget solution as quickly as possible. Faculty decisions and hires need to be made now for next fall.”
Making faculty decisions will likely be a very turbulent process should LSU be forced to officially enter academic bankruptcy. NOLA.com states that being in the midst of financial exigency makes attracting faculty to a university particularly difficult.
“Being in a state of financial exigency means a university’s funding situation is so difficult that the viability of the entire institution is threatened. The status makes it easier for public colleges to shut down programs and lay off tenured faculty, but it also tarnishes the school’s reputation, making it harder to recruit faculty and students.”
LSU is not the only university in the state of Louisiana facing financial woes. Woodley reported that several other Louisiana universities were facing the possibility of academic bankruptcy.
For the time being it appears that LSU’s administration is approaching the potential bankruptcy with a relatively level head. F. King Alexander, the president and chancellor of LSU, stated that the cries of bankruptcy were not mere attempts to stir up public panic.
“We don’t say that to scare people. Basically, it is how we are going to survive.”
The decision as to whether or not LSU must officially enter academic bankruptcy is expected to be reached in the very near future.
[Image Credit to Live Action News]