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Economic crunch forces job cuts at The Master’s College

Cutbacks are part of reorganization

Posted: January 6, 2009 9:10 p.m.
Updated: January 7, 2009 4:55 a.m.

Students in The Master's College orchestra perform during the college's "Come ChristmasSing" concert Dec. 12. Economic woes forced the school to eliminate nine staff positions.

 

The Master's College officials are reorganizing campus staff, eliminating nine support staff positions and matching financial aid packages with individual student needs to make its academic programs more affordable for students.

"We had redundancy in some areas and we wanted to make strategic decisions for the future," said Senior Vice President and Provost Mark Tatlock, Ph.D. "We restructured to make sure we could remain affordable and offer an expanded amount of financial aid."

Part of the college's campaign to maintain affordability is aimed at students whose families are in financial straits. College officials call the financial aid campaign "Premium Education Personally Priced."

"It's a personalized approach to financial aid that looks at individual family needs and optimizes a student's opportunity to come to the college," Tatlock said. "We had six students whose parents lost their jobs (last year). We were able to recalculate their awards based on their family contributions, which enabled all six of these students to return to school."

College officials also contacted the parents of each current student to determine if they were facing any financial challenges, Tatlock said.

"We surveyed every student to find out if they were at risk for not returning due to economic factors," he said.

Lee Duncan, director of educational partnerships, said the college's past financial aid programs allowed his four children to attend and graduate from the college.

"The financial aid officer was most helpful in giving us guidance as parents of how we could maximize our benefits," he said. "By the time all the scholarships were applied, their costs came down to about $6,000 to $8,000 a year."

Tatlock said more than 80 percent of the college's students receive financial aid.

"We have very generous financial aid packages," he said. "We're working with students to make education affordable."

Stephen Duwe, a junior accounting major at TMC, said his financial aid helped him complete his first college degree.

"It's definitely making it a lot easier for me to afford college," he said. "My parents give me a certain amount and whatever they can't afford I have to pay. My financial aid helps decrease (my cost) significantly. I'm planning to stay around for another semester to add a (second) degree in finance."

Located in Placerita Canyon, the private Christian liberal arts college serves a student body of almost 1,000 undergraduate students and 200 graduate students.

The Web site address is www.masters.edu. The phone number is (800) 568-6248.

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