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U. of Wisconsin Flagship Will Cut 400 Positions in Response to Budget Cuts

The University of Wisconsin at Madison will cut 400 positions, merge or close academic programs, and reduce support programs in response to anticipated state budget cuts, The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports. The announcement, from the flagship’s chancellor, Rebecca M. Blank, is the latest development in a battle over funds between the university system and the state government.

“I want to emphasize that these changes, as difficult as they are, cannot and will not stop with this year’s budget,” Ms. Blank wrote on her blog on Friday. “We will continue a thorough review of university operations, guided by our new strategic framework, to invest in our strengths and reduce or eliminate underperforming programs.”

Ms. Blank identified programs in information technology, agriculture, and the arts as ones that would be ended or restructured. The Journal Sentinel notes that most of the 400 positions to be eliminated are vacant.

Wisconsin’s Legislature is now debating a proposal by Gov. Scott Walker, a Republican, to cut $300 million from the university system in exchange for granting it more autonomy. The university system’s president, Raymond W. Cross, has said he will resign if the cut is not reduced.

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