We reported a while ago that there were some concerns regarding Cal’s atheletic funding, especially when considering the hubbub surrounding the budget. Because of this our Chancellor Birgeneau (or “Birgy,” as we wish we could call him) asked for a report on the state of Cal’s sports programs. Ladies and gents, the results are in.

And now that the report’s out, that means some changes for athletics. Nothing major, it looks like, although it really is too soon to tell.  Birgy just issued a statement (that’s how we in the press say “wrote a letter”) summarizing some of the report’s findings. Said findings tell us that the program is goodfor the community and the college (duh) but that we also need to trim the budget (duh duh). They think that the campus should allocate about $5 million a year for Intercollegiate Athletics, although nothing has been settled yet.

There’s also mention of the “human element” that’s so important like the student-athletes and their coaches and the alumni that all make up IA. So no worries, sports fans–it looks like the adaptation of athletics will not be devastating. We only wish that regular students had a cool title like “student-athlete.” Perhaps we bloggers could be “scholar-satirists?”

Image source: Monica’s Dad under Creative Commons
Chancellor welcomes report on Cal athletics [UC Berkeley News]

Transparency said:
Jul 15, 2010 at 7:49 pm

Since the Cal Chancellor has been able to find $3 million for consultants to do his job he can find the $ to maintain all Cal Athletics.

Transparency said:
Nov 5, 2010 at 7:52 pm

UC Berkeley Money for Consultants but Not for Sport
When UC Berkeley announced its elimination of baseball, men’s and women’s gymnastics, and women’s lacrosse teams and its defunding of the national-champion men’s rugby team, the chancellor sighed, “Sorry, but this was necessary!”
But was it? Yes, the university is in dire financial straits. Yet $3 million was somehow found to pay the Bain consulting firm to uncover waste and inefficiencies in UC Berkeley, despite the fact that a prominent East Coast university was doing the same thing without consultants.
Essentially, the process requires collecting and analyzing information from faculty and staff. Apparently, senior administrators at UC Berkeley believe that the faculty and staff of their world-class university lack the cognitive ability, integrity, and motivation to identify millions in savings. If consultants are necessary, the reason is clear: the chancellor, provost, and president have lost credibility with the people who provided the information to the consultants. Chancellor Robert J Birgeneau has reigned for eight years, during which time the inefficiencies proliferated. Even as Bain’s recommendations are implemented (“They told me to do it”, Birgeneau), credibility and trust problems remain.
Bain is interviewing faculty, staff, senior management and the academic senate leaders for $150 million in inefficiencies, most of which could have been found internally. One easy-to-identify problem, for example, was wasteful procurement practices such as failing to secure bulk discounts on printers. But Birgeneau apparently has no concept of savings: even in procuring a consulting firm, he failed to receive proposals from other firms.

Students, staff, faculty, and California legislators are the victims of his incompetence. Now that sports teams are feeling the pinch, perhaps the California Alumni Association, benefactors and donators, and the UC Board of Regents will demand to know why Birgeneau is raking in $500,000 a year despite the abdication of his responsibilities.

The author, who has 35 years’ consulting experience, has taught at University of California Berkeley, where he was able to observe the culture and the way the senior management operates.

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the hubbub surrounding the budget? that’s nonsense

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