Athletics not spared from budget cuts

Leanne Cave and Leanne Cave

The proposed $6 million budget cuts present a big puzzle that Bakersfield College will have to solve.

Each of the 55 programs at the college will have to evaluate and try to come up with a piece of the puzzle that meets the needs of the students as well as keep the institution from suffering as a whole.

And the Athletics Department is no exception.

According to BC , Athletics Director Jan Stuebbe at this point of the game, everything is premature, but athletics, as well as other departments, will have to identify what is necessary and what isn’t, and that won’t be easy.

“I think self-audits are a part of the puzzle,” Stuebbe said. “We have to go through the process as well as the other 55 programs and hopefully the end result is that we won’t have to suffer.

“Obviously we have to meet our budgets,” he added. “It’s like a big jigsaw puzzle and every department is a piece of that puzzle that has to work together and fit.”

Like other programs on campus, the Athletics Department submitted a self-evaluation last week to college officials, who will use the information to decide where to make reductions.

The Athletics Department has already begun to work on its piece of the puzzle.

“We’ve lost a full-time volleyball coach,” he said. “That is a $30,000 cut because of recruiting purposes we had to go ahead and hire an adjunct instructor so that we could recruit for the upcoming volleyball season.”

And if that isn’t enough, the department has lost $60,000 for instructional equipment for 2003-04, according to Stuebbe.

At the end of the 2002 tennis season it was projected that BC tennis programs would not exist in 2003.

But the community helped to raise the money for the operational costs for the teams for the next three years.

“Our individual sports programs as well as other programs depend on outside sources,” Stuebbe said. “As far as our budgets we are on skeleton funds.”

Rob Slaybaugh, men’s tennis coach, who helped to organize the dinner/reverse drawing along with Stuebbe, said the main reason that programs exist is to educate students.

“In programs such as band, forensics, drama or athletics, kids learn lessons that they will use their whole life such as interacting and getting along with other people,” Slaybaugh said.