Last week, California University of Pennsylvania (Cal U) issued a statement announcing that six assistant coach contracts would not be renewed. Keith White, Coach Executive Leader for APSCUF, is issuing the following response:

“I am distressed and disappointed with President Jones’s and the California University leadership’s decision to non-renew six assistant coaches. While I am fully aware of the limits of financial resources on all State System schools, it is still quite a shock to have the heart of an athletic program hit so hard and with such little discussion or warning.

“Assistant coaches play an integral part in the lives of our student athletes and the athletic department. They are mentors, recruiters, fundraisers, and they steer the students to degree completion. For those students who participate in women’s soccer, men’s soccer, baseball, football, softball, and volleyball programs, this is not simply a ‘workforce adjustment.’ It changes their lives.

“It is hard to see how, exactly, this is a wise decision on the long-term health of the university, and it is difficult to see why this decision could be done so rashly and without university-wide discussion.

“Student recruitment and retention should must be a top priority at Cal U. Removing six talented individuals who make such an impact in the lives of Cal U students is shortsighted and alarming. We all need to take a hard look at how the university prioritizes its expenditures to make sure that they maximize our students’ learning experiences.”