The future of Louisiana State University, home to over 30,000 students, is in peril.
LSU announced Wednesday that staff were preparing financial exigency paperwork, amounting to a declaration of financial emergency for Louisiana’s flagship university.
Not bankruptcy exactly, exigency announcements are often followed by controversial cost-cutting measures like laying off tenured professors and shutting down university programs, as was the case with nearby Southern University in 2011.
The LSU Department of Athletics wouldn’t be immune to these cuts either.
The Pelican State is looking down the barrell of $1.6 billion dollar deficit. State Legislature failed to find a solution the the crisis Wednesday and now Louisiana’s higher education community is preparing for an 82 percent cut in funding.
Administrators across the University of Louisiana system find themselves unable to make basic faculty and funding decisions, and students and faculty are wondering if there will be a Fall semester.
There’s also concern that Wednesday’s announcement could cause an exodus of out-of-state students and deter incoming freshman from enrolling.
“We don’t say that to scare people,” LSU president F. King Alexander said. “Basically, it is how we are going to survive.”
*Featured Photo (above) credit to Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports