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Community Email Communication

Last updated on Aug 09, 2023

Emails shared with faculty and staff are included below as a reference. These emails address timely topics of importance to the CCA community.

Email updates from the Office of the President.

Update: June 28, 2023

To: All Faculty, All Staff, All Students

From: President's Office

Subject: CCA’s position on the Supreme Court’s pending affirmative action ruling

Date: June 28, 2023

Dear CCA Community,

Many of you may be following the Supreme Court’s pending decision regarding whether and to what extent race may be factored into admissions decisions for both private and public colleges, widely known as affirmative action. The SCOTUS has twice upheld the merit of racial considerations in admissions in the past 20 years, and we anticipate that the specific ruling on the Students for Fair Admissions case will impact the use of race and ethnicity in college admissions. 

We at CCA know that a culturally diverse and inclusive campus is integral to academic excellence. We firmly believe in providing educational opportunities for students from diverse backgrounds and perspectives, and regardless of the final decision and the legal challenges to educational equity practices that may follow the SCOTUS ruling, our values remain the same. 

We are a community of artists, designers, writers, and architects with the vision to lead cultural change. CCA cultivates ideas and impact, educating students as change-makers through purposeful practice, and our focus on diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging is at the heart of what we do.  It ensures everyone has an opportunity to thrive. At CCA, students discover their voice, learn from peers and mentors, refine their skills, and completely reinvent themselves – all of which wouldn’t be possible without a welcoming and inclusive environment that seeks diverse perspectives.  

You may have questions and concerns about what the pending decision means for our community, and we hope to provide you with some clarification. Regardless of the decision, there will be no change to CCA’s undergraduate or graduate admissions policies. Our practice has always used a holistic review of each applicant to the college; we do not use specific data points to determine admissions. Each individual applicant file is comprehensively reviewed by our admissions counselors or designated graduate program faculty. Next, the applicant is reviewed for admission based on that comprehensive recommendation. 

We continue our commitment to understanding each applicant’s work, their unique and individual experiences, and their future potential contributions to the CCA community, and the world, as determining factors in their admissions to the college. Improving access and opportunities for underrepresented groups is essential and vitally enriching for everyone. We will continue working toward our goals to increase diversity among our students, staff, faculty, and trustees; to develop a pedagogy and curriculum that reflects social and cultural diversity; and build a campus community that supports and values diversity.

As the decision unfolds, we will be following closely and will continue to stay in communication with the CCA community. 


Steve Beal, President and CEO

Dr. Scott Cline, Senior Vice President of Enrollment Management & Auxiliary Services

Tricia Brand, Vice President of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging

Update: May 3, 2023

To: All Faculty, All Staff

From: Human Resources

Subject: Information regarding staff reductions this week

Date: May 3, 2023

Dear CCA Staff and Faculty, 

We’d like to share more details regarding the impacted departments as part of the staff reorganization. Yesterday, staff whose positions were affected by eliminations were notified and those individuals met with their teams and managers to discuss transition plans. In order to provide clarity around department changes, we felt that it was important for the CCA community to know where reductions have been made across the college. 

Below is a list of divisions and departments that were impacted by the reduction notices sent yesterday. 

  • Academic Affairs
  • Student Affairs 
  • Technology Services 
  • Advancement
  • Instructional Services 
  • Operations

In total, seventeen layoff notices were sent and this represents less than 7% of our current staff. As a result of department reorganizations, the college is creating new positions and has several vacancies already posted. We are encouraging affected staff members to apply for these new opportunities. 

In order to address the college’s budget gap and achieve a balanced budget, we have also eliminated a significant number of vacant positions. We understand that this will have an impact on our remaining staff and that it affects the reorganizations of our divisions. We recognize the importance of sharing more detailed information about department reorganizations, and in the next few weeks, we will begin outlining the reprioritization of department workloads once teams discuss their priorities together. 

Please note – we are canceling the All Staff meeting this Thursday, May 4, and instead are encouraging teams to gather with each other. It’s an important time for teams to connect and to begin having conversations with managers as our new structure and working relationships take shape. The next All Staff meeting will resume on June 1. 

We have scheduled meetings with the Union to begin negotiations on May 3, 10, and 12. We continue to follow the protocols of the CBA (Collective Bargaining Agreement) as we follow this process through. 

It’s a difficult week that is deeply impacting our campus community. We know that we all will continue to support one another as we move forward. As a reminder, we have a Stress Debriefing Session scheduled on May 5 at 11am. Please reach out to to RSVP. You may also want to revisit the health and wellness resources on our Portal and we will continue to update the FAQ on the Portal as a living resource. 

Take care, 

Maira Lazdins, VP HR

Update: April 28 2023

To: All Staff

From: The President's Office

Subject: Details regarding layoff notifications

Date: April 28, 2023

Dear CCA Staff, 

In Tuesday’s email communication, I mentioned that we would provide more details regarding the notification date for staff reductions this week. Through this process, we have been focused on providing information and answers to our community as soon as possible, given the many complexities that come with reductions and resulting organizational redesign. 

Next week, on Tuesday, May 2 at 9:30 am, we will send a direct communication to staff whose positions are impacted by the reductions. Those staff will be given information regarding severance and other resources to help them prepare for the transition. Shortly afterward, we will send out an all staff email confirming that impacted staff have been notified. Managers and HR will meet with individuals impacted to provide support and answer questions. Those individuals will be provided with a clear timeline and end date for their position. We will share a list of impacted departments and positions with all staff and faculty following this notification next week. 

On Thursday, May 4 at 11 am, we will have an all staff meeting for the community to ask questions and to provide any clarification on the process and next steps. There will also be two stress debriefing sessions provided by Claremont EAP on Wednesday, May 3 from 11 am to 1 pm in Room 103 in 1111 8th Street, and on Friday, May 5 from 11 am to 1 pm via Zoom. Details can be viewed on the Spring 2023 Communications portal page. 

As we communicate these decisions, next week, in particular, will be a challenging time for our staff. Please remember to hold space for one another as we move through this transition as a community. 

Thank you,

Steve Beal, President 

Maira Lazdins, VP HR

Update: April 25, 2023

To: All Faculty, All Staff

From: The President's Office

Subject: Follow-up to the Budget Information Session on 4/20

Date: April 25, 2023

Dear CCA Staff and Faculty, 

Thanks to those of you who joined us for the budget information session held last Thursday, April 20. As we navigate this process, we appreciate your continued engagement, questions, thoughts, and concerns. 

Some follow-up items

As a follow-up to some of the questions raised during the meeting, I wanted to point to a few specific items that were discussed. Please continue to reference the FAQ on the Portal for more updates. 

During this week’s faculty senate meeting, we will share results from a compensation study of ranked faculty salaries, including a disaggregated view of the entire faculty salaries budget broken down by budget categories and faculty classifications. 

We continue to add information to the FAQ related to CCA’s finances, based on both earlier questions and new questions that arose during the information session. This data continues to guide CCA’s decision-making.

Yesterday, I sent an email to all students to let them know that we’re taking important steps in order to achieve a balanced budget. I included a link to our Portal FAQ for those seeking additional information. If anyone receives questions from students that they do not feel comfortable or equipped to answer, please check in with your managers so that we can best address their concerns. 

What’s happening this week 

This week, CCA leadership will be finalizing the restructuring plans for departments, including rethinking and clarifying priorities and workloads. Late this week we will share more specific information regarding notification of impacted positions. 

Our HR department continues to communicate with the union to coordinate meetings to discuss the aspects of the collective bargaining agreement (CBA) that are related to these changes and specific questions raised by members of the union. 

Thanks to all of you again. 

Take care, 

Steve Beal 

Update: April 18, 2023

To: All Faculty, All Staff

From: The President's Office

Subject: An update regarding CCA budget reductions

Date: April 18, 2023

Dear CCA Staff and Faculty,

As a follow-up to our initial communication about budget reductions that was shared on March 29, I am writing with some more information regarding our progress and next steps.

Process update

Today, our HR department connected with our union representatives at SEIU Local 1021 to provide notice about bargaining unit departments that will be impacted by the staff reductions. We are in the process of scheduling meetings to discuss the aspects of the collective bargaining agreement (CBA) that are related to these changes. It’s important to note that positions will be impacted across the college, including both union and non-union employees at all levels.

Our leadership team is also conducting an impact analysis report of the recommended positions. This workforce analysis helps to minimize disproportionate impact on groups represented within our staff distribution across race, ethnicity, gender, seniority, age, and education level.

We are working with an anticipated layoff date between May 22 and June 2 to allow for the required bargaining period with the union as outlined in the CBA, and plan to provide notification of affected positions in advance of that date. We will share more specific information as it is confirmed.

Guiding facts

We realize that there has been a lot of information to process over the past several weeks, and we appreciate the questions that have come in. We continue to keep the FAQ page up-to-date with as much information as possible as a resource for the community. We also wish to highlight the following points:

  • We expect layoffs to impact approximately 8% of currently filled staff positions
  • We have 255 staff positions currently filled, including both permanent full-time and part-time staff
  • Financial Aid for students is approximately $24 million dollars from CCA’s gross annual budget for FY23.
  • After Financial Aid, the total net annual budget for CCA is $73 million dollars:
    • Staff salaries and benefits make up 36% of the FY23 net annual operating budget and equate to approximately $27 million dollars.
    • Faculty salaries and benefits make up 33% of the FY23 net annual operating budget and equate to approximately $23 million dollars.
    • CCA’s current debt is $32 million and our interest expense is 1.5% of the FY23 operating budget.

Opportunities for engagement and support

We are committed to sharing as much information as is available throughout this process, as well as creating more spaces for dialogue and discussion. I hope you can join us for our next Town Hall meeting this Thursday, April 20 from 11 am to 12 pm where the leadership team will provide more detail around college finances, student enrollment, and the FY24 budget. We will also share process updates, and allot time for Q&A.

In addition to the Town Hall, a follow-up supervisor session will soon be scheduled to capture additional considerations for budget managers. Stress Debriefing sessions will also be held each week through a counselor from Claremont EAP. These are optional sessions with the first hour focused on group support; the second hour can be used for individual meetings with the clinician. Please view the portal page for opportunities to participate in a session.

Next steps

I recognize that as we navigate this difficult reality for the college, it is also happening in the midst of a very busy time of year as we celebrate the many accomplishments of our students, faculty, and staff. The work we do together in the coming weeks will strengthen CCA’s financial position and our ability to deliver on our mission, and your dedication to our students during this critical time for the college is appreciated.


Steve Beal

Update: March 29, 2023

To: All Faculty, All Staff

From: The President's Office

Subject: Important Message From the President

Date: March 29, 2023

I am writing to share an important update on CCA and work we must do in the coming weeks to ensure a vibrant future for our college. While our long-term outlook is strong, we are not insulated from the current pressures being felt across all of higher education. Nationwide, colleges have seen enrollment declines due to a long-anticipated drop in the college-going population, which has been compounded by pandemic-related enrollment and financial challenges. New student interest and enrollment is healthy, but our recovery from the pandemic has been slower than anticipated and today CCA’s student body is nearly 20% smaller than before the pandemic.

Because CCA’s annual budget is heavily dependent upon tuition, decreased enrollment means decreased revenue. We need to adjust our budget now to reflect this new reality to ensure a balanced budget for the coming year that allows us to continue to meet our educational mission.

Aligning Our Budget with Current Enrollment
During the pandemic crisis we relied on college reserves for support but that is no longer possible. To achieve balance in our budget for the coming year, we must reduce CCA’s total expenses by 10%. The Budget Office will be reaching out to budget managers today with guidance on the reductions that must be made to their operating budgets. This information will be followed by information sessions to provide those managers with support as they build budgets for the coming year. These reductions will not be easy, but they are essential. They also will not fully close the budget gap.

To balance the college budget, CCA will need to reduce the size of our staff to reflect the current size of our college. These reductions will not impact faculty, as the size of our faculty is adjusted in line with enrollment each semester.

Rethinking and Reinventing our Work
To support this effort, Human Resources has started to work closely with division leadership to identify opportunities to rethink and restructure their approach to their particular plans, and to re-prioritize their work, which may include reducing workload to align with lower levels of staffing.

Over the next several weeks, we must think differently about how we staff and fund our educational mission. As a newly unified, residential campus anticipating the opening of a dynamic new facility in Double Ground, our budget and staffing models need to support an evolving model of education at CCA - one that serves today’s and tomorrow’s students as we pursue our mission to “shape culture and society through the practice and critical study of art, architecture, design, and writing”.

Coming Together and the Work Ahead
We recognize that these reductions will be felt by our entire community, and that CCA has experienced a great deal of change in recent years. The coming weeks will be a time for us to care for each other, not just as CCA employees but as colleagues and friends. We will honor the contract of collective bargaining for our union-represented staff as college leadership works with SEIU Local 1021.

We will move forward with thoughtfulness, urgency, and compassion, as we must complete our work by the beginning of the next fiscal year (July 1). We expect that the process of identifying the staff positions to be eliminated will take place over the next 45 days. I will share an update on our progress in mid-April, at which point we will have identified the affected departments and job families, and we’ll be reaching out to SEIU Local 1021. We are hoping to share outcomes of these reductions in May as they impact specific positions.

It is important that we gather as a community to process this news and discuss the work ahead. The leadership team will host a staff and faculty town hall tomorrow at 11 am PDT to provide an overview of the process ahead and open the floor for questions. Please feel free to also submit questions in advance anonymously using this form, which will be available as a resource going forward. This meeting will be followed by sessions for managers to provide them with information and resources. We recognize that this announcement will generate many questions so we have created a Portal page for the full community to access, where we will post updates and maintain an FAQ area, which we have started and will add to as questions arise.

Focusing on Our Mission, Our Students

Over the past several years, together we have laid the foundation for a strong future for CCA, and I remain deeply optimistic about that future. We have hard work to do, balancing our budget while focusing on the quality of education - the excellence - that our students, faculty, alumni, and community expect of CCA.

Thank you for what you do for our students, particularly at such a critical time for our college. The work we do together in the coming weeks will strengthen CCA’s financial position and our ability to deliver on our mission for today and tomorrow.

Steve Beal