Historically Black Florida A&M University Facing Major Budget Cuts

The board of governors of the state university system in Florida has cut more than $300 million for the operating budgets of the 11 public universities in the state. Additional cuts are undoubtedly in store for the 2009-10 academic year.

At Florida A&M University, the only predominantly black university in the state system, the operating budget decreased from $120.9 million to $102.7 million. State appropriations for the university may be only $90 million or less for the 2009-10 academic year.

University officials are scrambling to meet the budget shortfall. Some classes have been eliminated and many other classes will have more students. Restrictions have been placed on faculty and staff travel. Other measures under consideration are a hiring freeze, the permanent elimination of 122 positions that are now vacant, the dropping of one summer school session, a switch to a four-day university schedule, and a mandatory unpaid furlough for all faculty and staff.