President Erickson Hosts Third And Final Fireside Chat
On March 26th, President Rodney Erickson and Vice President for Student Affairs Damon Sims hosted the third and final fireside chat in the Hintz Family Alumni Center. The chats gave students a small and informal to voice their concerns.
Like the last fireside chat, the budget issue dominated the discussion throughout. Ever since Governor Tom Corbett proposed education budget cuts in February, students have been especially concerned with the cost of tuition, which is likely to rise if these cuts are approved.
“We’re going to do our best to keep the tuition increases as modest as we can,” commented Erickson. However, as Sims then noted, “There is a dramatic difference between other Big 10 schools and Penn State in terms of state support.”
Students were also concerned with the spending of tuition dollars. However, both Sims and Erickson assured everyone that tuition was being spent in an efficient way, especially when it came to buildings on campus.
The Steidle building, built in the early 1930s, has recently been approved for renovation. When asked about why Steidle needed to be renovated, Erickson responded, “How can we do 21st century research in a building like [Steidle]?”
President Erickson hopes to do another town hall meeting this semester and a few more next year. He also would like to continue the fireside chat into next year as well “as long as there are students willing to engage.”