Defining Our Future

Update from Provost Gloria Gibson

March 8, 2012 

Dear Colleagues:

The meetings with United Faculty, Faculty Senate and the Graduate Council are complete.  I appreciate the input from those groups as well as communication from faculty, students and alumni.   We made significant changes based on the information that we received.  Yesterday, I presented my recommendations to President Allen for academic program closures or restructurings.  President Allen informed me today he has approved the list of program changes and will recommend it to the Board of Regents, State of Iowa for their consideration.

On average, the programs listed for closure graduated fewer than two students per year over the last five years.  Today’s recommendation is for the closure of 23 undergraduate majors, 19 undergraduate minors, 16 graduate programs, and the restructuring of 19 programs.  The degree programs listed represent approximately 2 percent of the degrees granted in 2010-2011.

Program closures and restructurings are needed to address our budget realities in Academic Affairs and to assure resources are used efficiently and effectively.

The complete list of recommended academic program closures and restructurings is online at

If approved, these changes will impact the employment of some faculty and staff.  The Board of Regents has approved an early separation incentive program for tenured faculty and we will do all we can to minimize layoffs.  All students enrolled in affected programs of study will be able to complete their coursework and graduate. 

I realize the process of making these changes has been difficult.   I also understand the concerns campus has felt.  As educators we know that we can learn much from difficult circumstances.  Let’s use this experience to work together to strengthen the vitality of our academic community.  

Gloria J. Gibson
Executive Vice President & Provost