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CU's journalism school should be discontinued for reasons of "strategic realignment" according to the final report of the Program Discontinuance Committee.

Discontinuance Committee recommends CU journalism school be “strategically realigned”

CU’s journalism school should be discontinued for reasons of “strategic realignment,” according to the final report of the Program Discontinuance Committee.

The committee presented its final report to the journalism faculty at noon Wednesday before officially presenting its recommendations to the provost and the Exploratory Committee on Information, Communication and Technology at a 1 p.m. public meeting in Old Main.

A digital copy of the report by the Program Discontinuance Committee is posted online.

The provost is expected to formally accept the committee’s report at the 1 p.m. open meeting, according to a CU news release. The acceptance of the report by the provost does not constitute approval or implementation of its recommendations, only the formal acknowledgment of the completion of the work by the Program Discontinuance Committee.

The committee wrote that it did not recommend discontinuance based on budgetary constraints or financial matters, but in order to permit a “strategic realignment” of the degree programs.

The provost, after considering the report of the committee, will make his recommendation on the committee’s findings to Chancellor DiStefano by Dec. 1. The chancellor then has until Jan. 1, 2011 to make a recommendation to CU President Bruce Benson, who has an additional 30 days before forwarding it on to the Board of Regents.

A vote by the Board of Regents will be required to discontinue the School of Journalism and Mass Communication, or to restructure or reconstitute the school.

According to a CU news release, the Exploratory Committee on Information, Communication and Technology is charged with providing an analysis of existing ICT assets (including those of the journalism school) on the Boulder campus and with making recommendations to help identify paths forward for the creation of an appropriate Boulder campus ICT program. The committee’s work is intended to help CU design appropriate programs in journalism education for the 21st century.

The Exploratory Committee will use the report of the Program Discontinuance Committee in consideration of its own preliminary report, which is due to the provost on Dec. 31. A final report is due on Feb. 1, 2011.

Regardless of the outcome of the two committees, all undergraduate and graduate students who have already been admitted to the journalism school will be able to complete their degrees.

Undergraduate adviser Jeanne Brown said the school received 206 fall applications to the school, which was only slightly down from the 213 received last fall. There was a substantial decrease in news-editorial applications and a substantial increase in advertising applications.

The school will accept spring applications for the fall 2011 semester, and will remain open for at least three more years in order to allow those currently in the journalism program to finish their degrees, according to the report.

Contact CU Independent Editor-in-chief Kate Spencer at

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