A lot has been said this week about the issue of the Computer Science program being phased out. Some claim this is an absolutely unforgivable act by the Concordia administration, completely ignoring the direction society is taking in general, while others argue that the major simply was not viable any longer, failing to bring in the necessary number of students.
After hearing from both sides, it’s easy to lean either way. Technology is undoubtedly one of the most important parts of our culture, but so is money. If we’re not making money, are we succeeding? It’s hard to say so.
While I absolutely do not like the decision to phase out the Computer Science major, this whole process has made me think of things in another way, and for that reason, I refuse to berate the college for the decision.
My basic thoughts are this: It’s expensive to run a college, and there’s no getting around it. Concordia has greatly increased its use of financial aid, both need- and merit-based, in the past decade. This, without a doubt, reduces the income for the college. Without this income, we’re going to be forced to make cuts. Unless, that is, you’re willing to support massive increases in tuition.
Again, I’m not happy that Computer Science is being phased out, and I don’t mean to tell CS majors or minors that their program isn’t important. Every program is important, both to the college as a whole and those involved in it.
That said, this program isn’t something we’re “known for.” This college cannot be expected to be everything to everyone. If we wish to maintain some of the things we are “known for,” such as low professor-to-student ratios, low(ish) tuition, and good study abroad opportunities (which has been a challenge lately), we’re going to have to sacrifice other things. In this case, that was a major.
CS students: I’m upset for you. I’m upset with you. I would agree with the statement that this shouldn’t be happening. But when push comes to shove, I can’t blame the administration for their decision. Concordia is great in a lot of areas, but that “a lot” cannot reasonably be expected to mean “all.”
Position at The Concordian: Editor-in-Chief
Year in school: Senior
Hometown: Bertha, Minnesota
Favorite Newspaper: The Star Tribune
Favorite Writer: Mitch Albom
Catchphrase: See what I did there?