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YSU leaders to discuss academic future with de Souza, Rickard

Monday's online discussion can be accessed on Facebook and WFMJ's website.
Bertram de Souza
Bertram de Souza

YOUNGSTOWN — Brien Smith, Youngstown State University's provost and vice president of Academic Affairs, and Jan Pintar, YSU's associate provost for Academic Administration, will join veteran Mahoning Valley journalists Bertram de Souza and Cynthia Rickard for a live online video conversation Monday.

The topic will be the steep decline in student enrollment that has ignited a firestorm of controversy on campus.

The conversation will be streamed beginning at 7 p.m. on and Bertram de Souza's The Scribbler Publishing Group YouTube Channel and Facebook page, as well as other online platforms.

Viewers will have the opportunity to submit questions and comments via email at or The Scribbler Group's Facebook page.

Last week, two longtime faculty members appeared in an hourlong podcast and strongly criticized the administration's plan to eliminate more than two dozen academic programs to make up for the loss in revenue as a result of the enrollment decline.

Mark Vopat, professor of philosophy and co-director of The Dr. James Dale Ethics Center, and spokesman for the faculty union, YSU-OEA, and Martha Pallante, former dean of the former College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences, warned of a lack of trust that does not bode well for the future.

They contended that the administration is supporting athletics and other programs at the expense of academics.

The video of that discussion can be found on and the Scribbler Group's YouTube Channel and Facebook Page.

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