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Last week, Shippensburg University announced that faculty layoffs were possible at the end of the upcoming academic year. Dr. Kenneth M. Mash, president of the Association of Pennsylvania State College and University Faculties (APSCUF), is issuing the following statement:

“Shippensburg University has suffered enrollment declines over the last few years. The leadership at Shippensburg ought to be pulling together its community to focus on its enrollment problems. This sort of announcement only demoralizes the campus, and it undermines the university’s overall attempt to increase enrollment.

“Two years ago, seven of the State System universities examined faculty layoffs as a method of possible cost savings. After an even sharper decline in enrollments, only five of those universities headed down the same path in 2014. In 2015, only one university – Cheyney – remains on that list.

“The management at Shippensburg University would to do well to look closely at their sister schools and learn from their past operating procedures. While each university is different and faces different challenges, layoffs will not improve campus morale which, in turn, will not attract more students. It is APSCUF’s sincerest hope that Shippensburg University’s management pursues a more rational path to fiscal solvency.”