Faculty were notified Tuesday afternoon if their positions were cut.
By Molly Korzenowski
Bethel faculty members received an email before 3 p.m. Tuesday from Human Resources with news regarding their positions or program eliminations.
The email included a letter outlining the terms of departure and severance. Faculty are allowed to share the news, but Bethel will not be releasing specific names out of respect for those affected.
The Clarion reached out to every department, offering a chance to share their thoughts about the university’s decisions. Most of them declined, but not all of them.
Missional ministries professor Erik Leafblad said his position was not affected by the cuts. As a graduate of Bethel, Leafblad said it’s hard to go through this process, especially when the faculty can’t be there for one another in person.
“Necessary or not, [these cuts] reveal the fragility of our institution, the fragility of higher education, and the need to be honest about who we are as a university, and where we are positioned in relationship to the world we inhabit,” Leafblad said. “I love Bethel; I want to see Bethel thrive. These cuts make that harder.”
“I haven’t heard who was affected yet this year, but I am praying for my colleagues,” said associate theatre professor Meg Zauner, whose program was cut last year.
Due to the restrictions of COVID-19, each faculty member whose position was cut will have a Google Hangouts appointment led by the dean of the individual’s division on Wednesday or Thursday. An all-campus email will go out Thursday providing the number of positions cut and the changes made to programming. The following week, students whose programs have been affected will be notified via email.
A community gathering will be held to address the decisions Friday.