Bradley University students are organizing to save the theater major after it was floated for potential elimination.
Last week, Bradley provost Walter Zakahi recommended cutting the theater, physics, and family and consumer sciences majors to save money and shift resources to higher-performing departments like mechanical engineering and nursing to close an $8 million deficit over the next several years.
Cierra Conrad is a junior theater major who joined a small group of theater students and supporters outside the Hartmann Center Monday morning to protest the proposed cuts.
"I think it's going to be a detriment not just to the students in the department, but a detriment to our campus," she said. "Theater gives passion to every person who sets foot in the building or comes to a show. And losing that would be an educational loss for every student here on campus."
If the cuts are approved, the majors would be "taught-out" to allow current students to finish up their degrees. Tenured faculty could continue to teach core curriculum courses in their subject areas.
An online petition looking to stave off the theater department's elimination has more than 7,500 signatures as of Monday morning. No final program decisions are made yet.