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Letter: Catawba eliminating exceptional programs

Catawba college is justifying putting the musical theater major on hold due to lowering enrollment. This is actually due to lack of funds in the past as well as in the present. Not to long ago, Catawba cut funds to the recruiting department. This was justified as having too little money to recruit out of this state. Costs included travel, food, gas and salary increases. Catawba had a great reputation as a performing arts college (theater, music, and dance), especially in the northeastern states as well as others.

Students who were recruited and accepted into this combined program knew they were getting the best background for musicals, dance, drama and other skills such as working props, building sets and stage managing. They went on to work in New York City and in traveling plays, which often returned to Broadway.

Perhaps the faculty in those areas are leaving Catawba after seeing others given only two weeks to a year to leave the campus after devoting their professional lives to this college.

Money is the reason Catawba is cutting its own throat and reputation as a fine art school. Why change directions only to become like any other college within a 100-mile radius.

Yes, Catawba is strong in preservation, recycling, science, energy and land management, but it can also invest in the arts where it has the highest reputation and recognition.

Do not blame killing the golden goose on low enrollment (perhaps that is due to potential students hearing that Catawba has abandoned the performing arts) and loss of faculty.

One hand washes the other. Low enrollment results in loss of instructor and lack of funding for recruiters to travel to northern and southern states (remember Chub Richards, who recruited the best). Come on Catawba.

Look to yourself. Do not throw away the exceptional for the mundane.

Julie Cline




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