April 14-- Brewton Parker College is restructuring its academic programs, bringing back its music major which was abandoned two years ago and abolishing seven faculty positions, all moves designed to help the college weather challenging economic conditions. The school issued the following press release Thursday.
"Brewton-Parker College announces today it is restructuring its academic programs into four main divisions: Arts & Sciences, Christian Studies, Business and Education, said Dr. Mike Simoneaux, acting president. No academic majors will be reduced as a result of this restructuring.
“These decisions will streamline our institution and put us in a better position to move forward,” said Dr. Simoneaux.
The former divisions of Arts & Letters, Social & Behavioral Sciences and Mathematics & Natural Sciences will combine to form the Division of Arts & Sciences.
The Division of Christian Studies will house majors in Religion & Philosophy as well as the music program, which returns to BPC during the 2011-2012 academic year with the addition of the church music major. Education and Business divisions will remain unchanged.
Dr. Simoneaux announced the music program’s return at the 2011 Alumni Weekend’s Tribute and Award Service Saturday, April 9 in Saliba Chapel. More than 500 alumni and friends responded to this news with a jubilant standing ovation. A BPC Reunion Alumni Choir of 273 voices under the direction of former music professor Hildegard Stanley highlighted the day’s events.
“There is a time for all things under Heaven, as that song says, and there is a time to get the music program restarted,” said Dr. Simoneaux, “but we will need two things. We need you to give some money and we need new students. We need your help... We need the involvement of the alumni. I will work with all the strength I have. I am your president during this transition.”
A special offering was taken up during the performance totaling $4,906.03, and 236 people committed to be prayer partners for Brewton-Parker.
“Dr. Simoneaux has taken additional steps to curtail spending and create a realistic budget for 2011-2012,” said Dr. Ron Melton, provost. “Unfortunately, it was necessary to reduce our faculty by seven full-time positions. Staff positions are not affected.”
Brewton-Parker has offered those who will not be given contracts assistance in finding new positions and a modest severance package.