On Thursday, MU’s Nuclear Science and Engineering Institute will cease to exist. The nuclear engineering department has been split in two, with the transition expected to be finalized by July 1.
The decision, which faculty say was not made with their input, came down on Monday in the form of a letter from Provost Brian Foster and graduate Dean George Justice. The NSEI will become a part of the MU graduate school and the Office of Research. Professor Tushar Ghosh says the decision will affect future and current grants, such as those from the Department of Education.
“They give three-year grants, and then we have to guarantee that if a student cannot finish his Ph.D. within the three years, we will support them for an additional two years," Gosh said. "So far, what we did, we supported them from our internal resources, and those resources will be gone."
Doctoral student Jenny Schutte says she fears this decision could cause a loss of accreditation, which could negatively affect her plans for post-grad residency. She says changing departments could force them to change their research concentrations.
“And if they’re carved up like this, I think it’s going to be very hard to see that kind of productivity continue, to the detriment of not only the university, but the state," Schutte said.
Professors will have two years to relocate to another department that fits their research.