The University of Maryland wants to get rid of the ESOL Conversation Program for the upcoming 2015-2016 Academic Year. They claim that because of budget cuts there is no money for the program but our cost each year is at most $30,000. The cost to run the program is a fraction of the University's budget and we believe that they can find other ways to fund the program like including a small participant fee, partnering with other schools on campus and more fundraising.
The former coordinator of the ESOL Program, Adam Lax, recently wrote an editorial in the The Diamondback criticizing the school's decision.
"If the budget reflects the true priority of a university, how could this university discard such a meaningful, popular program that embodies its stated internationalization goal? What does it say about the university when it gets rid of a program that so many international individuals on the campus rely on as a means for social integration and a space for intercultural and language learning?"
We want to get the University to look for other ways to fund and maintain this vital and popular program on campus. So we have created a petition. If you care about the ESOL Program and fulfilling the University's global engagement goal, please sign it!