Associated Students will host a public forum to discuss the state budget and its effects on the University from 4 to 6 tonight in the Student Resource Building’s Multi-Purpose Room.
The open event, organized by the Budget and Resources Branch of the A.S. Office of the President, is intended to inform students about the expected campus-level consequences of California Governor Jerry Brown’s proposed $500 million cut to the UC. A.S. President Paul Monge-Rodriguez, Presidential Leadership Fellow Hadar Dor and Commissioner for Budget Resources Armando Guerrero will serve as the event’s coordinators.
Monge-Rodriguez said the forum aims to clear up confusion about the University’s finances and allow opportunities for student participation.
“Many students see and feel the effects of budget cuts but often don’t understand the source of these cuts or who the key decision-makers are in administering them,” Monge-Rodriguez said. “Beyond providing information, we hope to create a space for dialogue where students have the opportunity to counsel UCSB administrators on how to make budgetary decisions in a way that is sensitive to our wants and needs.”
Campus administrators and faculty members including Executive Vice Chancellor Gene Lucas, Assistant Chancellor Todd Lee, Dean of Undergraduate Education Mary Nisbet and economics professor Henning Bohn will also be present.
According to Guerrero, the forum will facilitate discussion between campus decision-makers and the student body.
“A goal that we have is to make the administrators more accessible to the students,” Guerrero said. “We want to try to get the information that circulates among administrators to students.”
The event will consist of five-minute presentations on budget updates by administrators followed by a Q&A session. According to Dor, the A.S. Office of the President plans to use student input from the forum to develop future budget policies.
“We don’t want to decide ourselves what is important for the student body,” Dor said. “Our role is to find out what the student body wants and then advocate for them.”