Performing and Creative Arts Department Faculty Shelling Out Personal Funds for Supplies

By Banner Staff, Anonymous Sources

Photo Credit: College of Staten Island

The Performing and Creative Arts (PCA) department here at CSI is having a hard time getting supplies, which are expensive. Instead, supplies are having to be paid for by faculty and staff with their own money, as well as students, which is unacceptable.

According to the Faculty and staff of the Performing and Creative Arts department, there has been a disconnect between the purchase of their supplies according to an email obtained from an anonymous source to the Banner. The letter states, “All our (PCA) orders were placed before the mid-March deadline.” The letter goes on to state that the current paperwork shows everything has been budget-approved, but nothing has been given a purchase order.

The email also goes on to state that the Performing and Creative Arts department has been short staffed all semester and that their orders were not processed on time. This has long been a problem; the email criticized this “opaque bureaucracy, subject to extremely slow and laborious procedures, and utterly lacking in any will on the part of upper administration to even communicate about it, much less to solve the issue. This semester we have reached a crisis point.”

There was also a question by the current Interim President of the College, Mr. Timothy Lynch to the PCA, regarding what the art and photography department is doing without materials this semester. There were quite a few quotes from faculty and staff about the issue.

“In my over 20 years dealing with studio classes at CSI (this includes my time as a student or assistant), the materials supply was as bare as I have ever seen it,” said a faculty member. “In the past, we have always been able to rely on modifying a few elements or going into stockpiles for paint, charcoal etc. This was not possible this year and I got the sense that faculty were falling into a scarcity mindset.”  

Another member of the faculty stated that it is embarrassing to have to tell their students that they will not be receiving the tools they were promised (and paid for), and that they will have to share the department’s thin supply with the other classes.

One faculty member summed it up in the email.

“CSI has effectively stolen from its students and its faculty. The administration should be ashamed to have believed that this was an appropriate cost-saving strategy. I understand where I work. I know our budgets are razor thin,” said a faculty member. “Everyone in art education, especially in public schools, understands that. However, to knowingly take from students and misappropriate funds is incredibly disheartening, and implies that the administration believes our students are not worth investing in.” 

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