Modesto JC instructors, entire department could be budget victims

At least eight full-time Modesto Junior College instructors could lose their jobs and the mass communications department eliminated if officials from the cash-strapped school get their way.

MJC President Gaither Loewenstein said Friday the college is streamlining its offerings to cope with an $8 million budget cut.

The Yosemite Community College District Board of Education will meet March 9 to finalize budget cuts for MJC, Columbia College and central services, which includes district benefit, legal and accounting costs.

The large investment in television, film and radio equipment was too much to maintain at this time, he said. Culinary arts, anthropology, French, German and Italian are other classes that may be eliminated.

The fates of the Pirates Log student newspaper, Pirate’s Radio station and college art gallery have not been decided, he said.

The district is bracing for a $13.5 million smaller budget overall next year.

Among faculty members proposed to be cut, Loewenstein confirmed, are:

— Laura Paull, mass communication, journalism and film

— Carol Lancaster-Mingus, television and film

— Haleh Niazmand, director of the college art gallery

— Bob Glatt, culinary arts

— James Todd, anthropology

— Jeremy Wilson, engineering

— Ines Bucknam, French

— Alan Layne, communication graphics

An unknown number of part-time instructor hours also could be cut.

An open forum for employees and students is planned for March 4, Loewenstein said.