The Director of Communications at St. Thomas University in Houston, Sandra Soliz, today sent a press release regarding the possible threats to philosophers and philosophy programs there. She included a note that said that “all tenured philosophy professors will receive continuous contracts by today.” There do not appear to be any untenured tenure-track professors. The status of any visiting faculty and adjunct professors in philosophy there is unknown at this time.
Here is the press release:
The University of St. Thomas is pleased to report that discussions among academic deans, the administration, board members, faculty and staff are completed ahead of schedule. After this review, all faculty contracts are now available ahead of the anticipated June 12, 2017 date.
The University administration is discussing with members of the Board of Directors, a two-year plan to ensure the financial sustainability of its academic programs and will be following that with detailed actions to address the rapidly evolving changes that are occurring in higher education. The plan will address enrollment trends, organizational costs and strengthening the University’s Catholic, Basilan values. The core academic disciplines such as English and Philosophy will continue to contribute to the future growth of the university. These departments will remain separate and integral to the curriculum.
Our university proudly continues to teach the Basilian values of “goodness, discipline and knowledge.” We boast one of the most robust core curriculums in the nation with 30 hours (10 courses) required in Philosophy, Theology and English alone, and another 27 or 29 hours in a combination of arts, language or science.
St. Thomas, as many other universities, is responding to students’ increasing interest in professional and pre-professional programs. True to its Catholic liberal arts heritage, the University of St. Thomas continues to prepare students for professional careers in the context of a Catholic, Basilian, liberal arts education.