By Emily Leayman
The visit of the new Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education chancellor, Frank T. Brogan, began Nov. 12 with his eight-year-old son, Colby John seeing snow for the first time.
Brogan is traveling to all 14 PASSHE universities, meeting with their presidents, touring the campus and holding open forums. The open forum at KU was held at 11:15 a.m. in the Academic Forum for students, faculty and staff.
A private forum was also held, where three members of the KU Council of Trustees were present, including Guido Pichini, the chairman of the Board of Governors.
Budget and academics were key points for discussion. Brogan said that some schools are reaching the tuition market cap, the maximum amount that most families can afford to pay for college.
In regard to decreasing contributions from the state and rising costs of tuition, Brogan wants to organize a message to the Commonwealth that PASSHE is beneficial to the state economy, and money toward PASSHE is a good investment. He said in order to develop beneficial academic programs for the future, the state needs to contribute more.
PASSHE is organizing a task force to look into allocations for PASSHE and how its universities are funded.
He addressed the necessity of aligning community college programs with PASSHE’s programs.
Enrollment is becoming a looming problem for PASSHE. One of their efforts to alleviate it is the Multi-University Electronic Admissions Application, which allows students to apply to more than one PASSHE school at a time. Since the program launched in August, PASSHE has received over 50,000 applications, according to a Nov. 8 press release.
Brogan wants to have discussions about campus safety, online education, general education and an emphasis on undergraduate education.
“The future of this institution, even with all of the challenges, is very bright,” he said at the conclusion of his private forum.
Brogan comes to PASSHE after being the chancellor of the State University System of Florida.
Brogan said that he and his wife, Courtney and son, Colby John, are not only enjoying Pennsylvania, but the people as well.
“I am happy to be here, and my family is happy to be here,” he said.
As chancellor, he is the chief executive officer, who works with the Board of Governors to recommend and develop PASSHE policies. He was appointed by the Board of Governors on Oct. 1.