And just like that, the pages were wiped.

On Tuesday afternoon, UNCG administration removed many of the web pages on individual departments’ sites that listed and linked reasonings to support their now-cut academic programs.

The move is one of the final nails in the coffin since the chancellor began the yearlong academic review process in 2023, citing issues of population decline and budget woes.

In the last several months, departments from math to religious studies to foreign languages to anthropology have been fighting at the university to keep their programs intact. But on Feb. 1, their hopes were dashed when 20 programs were ultimately scrubbed from the university’s offerings. 

And now, less than two weeks later, their efforts have been wiped away as well.

On many of the individual department websites, petitions, letters written by department heads, faculty and staff were posted to show deep support for their programs. But as part of the administration’s process in moving forward with the cuts, those pages were wiped.

Now, a standard “Page Removed” message occupies the space and reads, “If you have reached this page, you are following a link to content that has been removed by order of the UNCG administration. More information about UNCG’s Academic Program Review is available from a variety of UNCG and non-UNCG sources.”

But reporting by TCB and other outlets have shown that the university administration’s portrayal and presentation of data has been lacking at best and misleading and incorrect at worst.

And so what are the faculty and staff and students of the soon-to-be defunct programs to do?

Some faculty are staying the course and will continue teaching at UNCG. But many whom I’ve spoken to are leaving the university altogether. And who can blame them?

The process has been shown to be opaque and confusing from the start. And further reporting shows that more changes are likely coming down the pipeline.

And it’s coming for the whole UNC System, not just for UNCG. Higher education is going through a metamorphosis and those in its wake — from students to faculty to staff — are left wondering where they’ll belong once it’s all said and done. But as a journalist and a recorder of history as it happens, cleaning out records and erasing the past, doesn’t seem like the best way to start.

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