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Why Dr. Lucey Resigned
Why Dr. Lucey Resigned

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AIR DATE: July 24, 2013

GUEST

Dr. Carol Lucey, former president, Western Nevada College

During the last six years, Nevada’s largest universities have fought over who gets the lion’s share of funding -- meanwhile, smaller state schools have had to scrounge for scraps.

That’s certainly been the case for Western Nevada College, which serves seven counties including Lyon, Storey, and Carson. Western has seen its share of state funding shrink by almost a third in the last three legislative sessions.

And last week President of the school, Dr. Carol Lucey, resigned, stating “what else can I do?”

She says her resignation was not meant as a protest, but was simply a personal decision.

“I’m very proud of what we built here,” says Lucey. “I think going forward it will continue to be a very very strong college. But the political leaders in this state have it within their power to destroy it. And the current direction to me in which they’re heading suggests that’s going to happen.”

Lucey says that the school once had almost 80 on faculty, but now has less than 50 – “draw your own conclusions” – and that the budget cuts were thoughtless and politically motivated.

She says that the nursing school was slated to add a new faculty member in the fall, but the budget constraints now make this impossible. She particulalry doesn't want to see the nursing program face steep cuts because, she says, not only do the rural nursing students lose out on the accessibility of local training, but the communities the graduating nurses serve  will suffer.

“These rural communities really need health care,” she says, adding that the passage of the Affordable Care Act means an even greater need for health professionals.

 

 

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    COMMENTS:
    What can she do?? While I'm not particularly familiar with her institutions, I am very familiar with UNLV, UNR and CCSN. And all three of those institutions *need* to have their budgets cut by, say, at least 1/3! I say that because the average citizen has absolutely no idea of how extremely badly those institutions are managed, and of how much tax money is wasted on total crap, bureaucracy, and other inappropriate ventures at these schools. Believe me, they could all get by just fine with far less (and become better schools in the process), and I'd guess that if she could, too. If she were to open-mindedly analyze her mission, and how to achieve it she has, anyway.
    Tim HuntJul 24, 2013 08:57:50 AM
    Mr. Hunt knows nothing about CSN, UNLV or UNR. Cut their budgets by a third? This kind of ignorance is astounding. I would wager he know little to nothing about how higher ed is funded in this state, and that he is likely another one of those anti-intellectual social conservatives who thinks that colleges and universities are glorified job-training facilities that aren't doing their jobs. What exactly would you cut? Faculty salaries? Air conditioning? How exactly would you make these institutions better schools? Why don't you approach a faculty member and spend some time learning about what goes on on these campuses, what their missions actually are, and what their problems REALLY are? Yeah, there are problems, but they are not going to be solved by cutting budgets even more. People who continue to advocate underfunding higher education in Nevada are creating more problems, not offering solutions.
    Troy McGinnisJul 24, 2013 12:44:11 PM
    Well, Mr. McGinnis, FYI, I have advanced degrees, have taught at universities, and have run my own business. And I'm quite the opposite of an "anti-intellectual social conservative". In reality, I'm just someone with a proper sense of what universities should do, how to do it efficiently, and what such should cost. I've also scrutinized the NSHE budget. In any case, I fully stand by my assessment of Nevada higher education being more than full of crap, waste, inefficiency and bureaucracy. Indeed, any proper efficiency consultancy could easily cut the budget by at least one third, and possibly as much as one half! Mr. McGinnis, I'd suggest that you are the one who has absolutely no idea of what money is spent (wasted) on at NSHE schools, and of the staggering scale of that waste. I could write a book about it... several volumes, in fact.
    Tim HuntJul 26, 2013 10:09:21 AM
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