Rob Port, Minot
There's more troubling news coming out of Minot State University, with President David Fuller announcing that the school may be facing as much as a $3 million shortfall.
But should we be surprised? A year ago in September a Minot State University official testified before the legislature's Budget Section committee requesting nearly $10 million to shore up the school's misguided geothermal project which has gone egregiously over budget.
And there's more evidence of mismanagement at MSU. According to numbers recently compiled by Legislative Council which I obtained as public records, since the 2003-05 biennium non-instructional staff meaning all the employees at the university not engaged in teaching students has risen from 252 to 453, a nearly 80 percent increase.
During that same time frame, instructional employees went from 256 to 263, a mere 3.5 percent increase.
Remember that, despite this dramatic increase in staffing at MSU, full-time equivalent enrollment at the university has actually declined from 2,616 in 2007 to 2,599 in 2012.
We have fewer students at MSU, but a lot more staff and a whole lot more spending. Perhaps the problem at MSU is that their focus isn't so much on serving students as building a bureaucratic empire.