For decades, California’s public university system has been a model for the world and its prestige has helped create much of the state’s prosperity. But more recently the system has been stumbling. Its become a victim of constant budget cutting, chronic overcrowding and administrative gridlock. The situation at City College of San Francisco is just one local example of that, but the state’s budget woes have affected all facets of higher education. According to a recent analysis by Bay Area News Group, five of the 23 California State University campuses have more applicants than available spaces -- in every major. KALW’s Lisa Carmack spoke with several recent graduates of San Francisco State University about the challenges and triumphs of their public education.
The story at City College of San Francisco has had a lot of twists and turns since last year, and the San Francisco Chronicle’s higher education reporter, Nanette Asimov, has been one of the public’s main sources for information on it. She sat down with KALW’s Ben Trefny to talk about how the school got to where it is today, and where it’s going next.
It’s been a tough year for City College of San Francisco. The school first ran into trouble last July, when an oversight commission called CCSF’s accreditation into question, citing fiscal, structural and governance issues. The sanction forced the school, and its 85,000 students, into crisis mode, as they scrambled to fix the problems and keep the school accredited. Over the last year, layoffs and wage reductions have helped to trim the budget, though not without protest. And changes have been made to the school’s mission, accounting practices and spending.
For decades, California’s public university system has been a model for the world, and its prestige has helped to create much of the state’s prosperity. More recently the system has been stumbling – a victim of constant budget cutting, chronic overcrowding, and administrative gridlock.