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Northern State University faces budget cuts

A half-million dollars per year has evaporated from Northern State University’s budget. As a result, a dormitory will be taken offline.

As of the 2023 fall semester, NSU will close the McArthur-Welsh residence hall – the only traditional, non-suite style dormitory on campus.

University president Neal Schnoor said the cuts are productivity oriented.

“Senate Bill 55 led to strategic review across the system and to identify efficiencies," Schnoor said. "We use a very data-informed approach to allocate resources effectively. I would describe these as efficiencies – and again like all universities they make these actual year-to-year budget adjustments based on actual costs and revenues.”

Senate Bill 55 established a task force for the state university system to identify efficiencies and cost effectiveness.

Schnoor said NSU is still committed to Aberdeen and its students.

“Our highest priorities I would say are to meet the educational workforce needs of our region and state," Schnoor said. "Part of that, the key part for us is providing students a transformational education. The key is to get them to retain and graduate – and that is what we’ll stay laser-focused on.”

Plans have been made to bolster enrollment numbers.

“A large percentage of our staff and faculty have spent a year developing Northern’s first strategic enrollment plan," Schnoor said. "The plan itself is going to be a very important roadmap to us.”

A public forum is scheduled for April 19 for budget and Regent priorities.

C.J. Keene is a Rapid City-based journalist covering the legal system, education, and culture