There appears to be a “situation” at UNO, where I’m headed for my MFA program. The creative writing program there is split into two programs, the full-residency program, which I’m about to attend, and the lo-res option, where students are only on campus for a few weeks.
It was announced recently that due to budget cuts, the coordinator of the lo-res program, Bill Lavendar, was being let go. This was eminently believable, given that Bobby Jindal, the Republican governor and darling of the right wing, has been doing some serious cutting, not only of university budgets, but the state library system, etc.
Today, however, bore accusations from students in the low residency program, that it was not budget cuts, but an internal coup, that led to the termination of Mr. Lavendar. A petition drive has been mounted to retain him, or to at least allow him to stay on as director of UNO Press.
I have no knowledge of how plausible these charges are, but the mere fact that they’ve been made publicly, means that some sort of internal battle was or is brewing, and this will undoubtedly cast something of a shadow on the CWW, and distract energy that should be directed creatively.