It was a full house at Thursday’s Town Hall meeting, hosted by President John J. Hurley.
The meeting began with President Hurley conferring a citation of recognition upon Jacob R. Casell (see Campus Candid). President Hurley commended the facilities management employee for his prompt response to a man he found unconscious and nonresponsive on the Canisius campus in March. Casell’s actions saved the man’s life.
Following the citation conferral, President Hurley addressed New York State’s creation of the Excelsior Scholarship Program which purports to offer New York State students “free tuition” to SUNY and CUNY schools. President Hurley outlined the conditions of the program, its implications on Canisius (further details are included in his April 18 memo to the campus community) and emphasized “the complexity, variables and uncertainty” that accompany it. He also reported on some initial steps the college is taking. The Admissions Office is mailing letters to the parents of admitted students to highlight those qualities that distinguish a Canisius education from a SUNY education. Additionally, the college’s website will launch a FAQ page in the coming days. The page will provide more details about the Excelsior program. Finally, President Hurley indicated that he asked the marketing team to tweak the focus of its YOU CAN campaign to further emphasize the tremendous outcomes of a Canisius education.
The second half of President Hurley’s Town Hall focused on the college’s current budget challenges due to decreasing enrollment numbers across New York State (down 20 percent) and the Northeast. President Hurley presented a brief overview of how the college has reduced operating expenses by $14 million since 2012. Still, he indicated, New York State projects enrollment trends to hit a low point in 2022. While “enrollment management efforts continue to soldier on,” President Hurley said a report is being prepared for the Executive Committee of the Board of Trustees outlining ways to bring the operating expenses in line with revenues. “We’ll have a better idea of how things will unfold following the Board of Trustees meeting in May,” President Hurley explained.
President Hurley’s formal remarks were followed by a question-and-answer period. Throughout the presentation, he also answered questions submitted via the college’s new anonymous submission form.
Submitted by College Communications