On Thursday April 26, the second-ever Community Summit will be held in the Great Hall at Cooper Union. From 5:30-7:30pm, a panel discussion with distinguished alumni, faculty and students will address the current state of Cooper Union at a time when its administration is considering a devastating about-face on the historic mission of the college.
Panelists include: Day Gleeson, Peter Buckley, Tom Synnott, Litia Perta, Adriana Farmiga, John Leeper, Alan Lundgard, David Gersten and more (to be announced).
Many of us are beginning to feel a nickel-and-dime approach to saving the school may be prevailing at the expense of more thoughtful, principled action. So as the school year concludes and the Administration and Board of Trustees begin their final deliberations on the future of the college, the Community Summit will be an occasion to reaffirm the fundamental worth of Cooper Union and discuss its future.
At the same moment that Cooper Union’s administration considers tuition as a revenue stream—either for undergraduates or in an expanded, tuition-masters program—students all over the country are walking out to protest student loan debt, which nationwide has reached a staggering 1 trillion dollars. Cooper Union has the challenge and the momentous opportunity to lead by example and stand behind its unique mission of free higher education.
Meanwhile, the work that students, faculty and alumni have done in the last several months has shown that tuition doesn’t need to be on the table at all. In the coming days, an edited collection resulting from our community process will lay out details for a realistic financial way forward for Cooper Union and include the biggest and best ideas from the community on protecting and advancing the mission of the college.
Copies of this booklet will be available for free at the 2nd Community Summit, to be held on Thursday April 26 at 5:30pm in The Great Hall at Cooper Union.