Showing Solidarity, Edinboro University Students Conduct Sit-In for #SLASSHE Professors

With retrenchment (layoff) notices being handed out at over half of the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE) institutions, students and professors have begun holding rallies to show solidarity for those facing layoffs at the SSHE institutions and to protest the gutting of whole entire major programs in the arts, music, foreign languages and other liberal arts programs.

One rally, which according to East Stroudsburg University professor Bill Broun, will be held on October 29.


Since the summer, the Raging Chicken Press has been covering PASSHE’s retrenchment process.  East Stroudsburg University was rumored to use retrenchment last May, and according to an email sent to ESU faculty members on September 25:

At this time, seven departments are in discussions regarding full or partial retrenchment:  Modern Languages, Music, Movement Activities and Lifetime Fitness, Chemistry, Physical Education/Teacher Education, Physics, and Counseling and Psychological Services. Another seven academic departments are in discussion regarding potential changes to tracts or concentrations that are currently under enrolled, and other options such as reducing elective courses, that could also result in possible retrenchment.  Please note that 26 departments are not involved in these discussions.  It is also important to note that if decisions are made to eliminate programs or majors, it means that new students will not be enrolled in those programs.  Currently enrolled students in any major under discussion will continue in their program and will be able to graduate from ESU in their major.  Students will NOT be forced to leave ESU…

At the present moment, students at Edinboro University, another university dealing with stiff faculty retrenchments, are conducting a sit-in to speak with Edinboro University President Julie Wollman, but according to those conducting the sit-in, Dr. Wollman will not meet with her, unless her demands are met.  In early September, the Raging Chicken Press covered the proposed retrenchment plan at Edinboro.  Our story reported:

Edinboro University’s Operations and Workforce Plan calls for the elimination of 40 faculty members, 9 staff members, and 6 managers. Of the faculty members slated for retrenchment, at least 18 are tenured or tenure track. The proposed cuts amount to a 10% cut in faculty.

The plan seeks to place five programs into moratorium, which prevents any new student from enrolling in the programs but allows existing students to finish their major before the classes necessary to complete the majors are completely eliminated. The programs are:

  • Bachelor of Arts in German
  • Bachelor of Arts in Music
  • Bachelor of Arts in Music Education
  • Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy
  • Bachelor of Arts in World Languages and Cultures
The following tweets and photos are taken by students and faculty who are attending the demonstration.






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About Sean Kitchen 681 Articles
Contributor and Assistant Editor for the Raging Chicken Press. Stationed in Harrisburg covering politics in the capitol. You can send tips to or reach me on twitter at @RCPress_Sean!
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