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Ridgewater anounces changes in response to funding shortfall

WILLMAR -- Ridgewater College has implemented the first series of program and service changes in response to an anticipated shortfall of $3 million next fiscal year due to the state's budget deficit.

The Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system projects Ridgewater's allocation will be reduced by approximately $2.6 million for the next biennium ($1.2 million in fiscal year 2012 and $1.4 million in fiscal year 2013). The projected budget deficit at the end of 2012 will be nearly $3 million and nearly $4 million in 2013.

Ridgewater's administration announced today the decision to close the second year of the college's carpentry program and redesign and maintain the first year of the program.

The college also announced plans to reduce counseling services, reallocated resources to strengthen academic advising and other student support services and to cut the theatre classes at the Hutchinson campus.

Ridgewater College is a community and technical college with campuses in the communities of Willmar and Hutchinson. The college serves over 5,800 students annually through its nearly 100 academic programs.