Kernel Editorial Board
The tough economic times have had their effect on many aspects of campus, including forcing UK to suspend its dance minor.
The decision came out of a need to redistribute funding for an additional faculty member in the Kinesiology and Health Promotion department.
When the former dance instructor retired, the KHP faculty voted and unanimously decided to redirect funds toward a new faculty, rather than hiring a new instructor.
At a university claiming its aim is to draw in well-rounded students of dynamic and diverse backgrounds, it would seem counterproductive to suspend a program by cutting its lone faculty, rather than to draw the funds from a department made up of more than one faculty member.
In an April 21 Kernel article, KHP Chairwoman Melody Nolan justified the cut due to the low enrollment in the minor. The minor had only 11 students, and she said the majority of the classes didn’t service the entire department.
As soon as UK’s colleges start focusing on the quantity of students rather than the quality, we’ve lost sight of the pillar that forms the foundation of the Top-20 Business Plan.
Instead, UK may now be indirectly pushing away students who see that minoring in dance is no longer an option at this university.
One number UK should be focusing on is the top-20, and if we choose to measure our success according to the standards of the other universities that have already made their way into the top-20, then cutting the dance program should have never been a consideration. Every school in the current top-20 has a dance program.
No matter the department, or the enrollment numbers, cutting a program should be a last resort. In the case of KHP, there were other departments with multiple faculty members overlooking specific divisions.
Cutting the lone faculty for dance forces a situation in which UK is able to suit less students, a move contradictory to the mission of the university.