Big, big changes are coming to BJU’s academic programs–dozens of the school’s existing majors will be discontinued in the next few years, if a proposal by the school’s Academic Council to its board is followed. The two-page proposal, which you can download here, was sent to BJU News today and was apparently leaked by someone close to the administration.
Of particular note are the drastic cuts recommended for the School of Religion–three of the School’s seven majors are slated to end by 2014 including Pastoral Studies, Women’s Ministries and Youth Ministries. The school known as a “training ground for preachers” seems to be finding much of that training financially unsupportable.
Whole portions of the School of Fine Arts and Communication will be cut en masse: Journalism, Electronic Media, Public Relations, Interpersonal Communication, and more. String Pedagogy is the only specifically music-related major to be cut, but several performance majors have also been terminated in the last few years.
The Seminary will also be consolidated severely under the proposal, with a number of Master’s programs like Church History discontinued.
It’s not clear what motivated the proposed changes; the review by the Academic Council is a simple, stark list of programs to be ended. The reasons are easy to guess, though: financial instability, declining enrollment, and the implications of BJU’s long-pending attempt to secure SACS accreditation.