Youngstown State University publically released a list of the 26 academic programs that are being cut after a closed-door meeting last week.

The YSU OEA-Union Spokesperson, Mark Vopat, points out that at the same time these programs are being cut, the school's athletic budget will increase by nearly a million dollars.

The athletics budget is increasing 13% in 2022, going from $13-million dollars a year to almost $14-million.

All money generated from athletics gets reinvested into the program, meaning none of this directly assists any other programs.
But far from being a money maker, YSU Athletics does not make enough money in tickets sales to even pay for their whole program.

"There's only a handful of universities that generate enough revenue to pay for their expenses like Ohio State would," YSU Athletic Director Ron Strollo said, "Does money generated on ticket revenue and stuff like that go to help the greater good? It doesn't. It helps fund some of the expenses within our department so, in theory, the university wouldn't have to."

The increase comes as other programs are being cut, but the University released numbers showing 10 of those programs have zero students enrolled. The rest have under 12.

Strollo said the figures don't tell the whole story.

"A third of our budget is scholarships," he said, "Which is an expense to our budget, but that revenue comes back as revenue to the university too."

Strollo also points out YSU attracts student-athletes from around the country and all 550 of them represent tuition money for the university.

"Our first year of lacrosse which was last year, we had 24 student-athletes, of those 24 student-athletes, 22 came out of state," he said, "Only 22 were from Ohio on that roster, so it's pretty safe to say that those kids wouldn't have come to Youngstown State if it wasn't for the fact we were sponsoring women's lacrosse."

However, OEA-Union Spokesperson Mark Vopat said the university should be investing more money into academics rather than athletics given the fact some academic programs are suffering and enrollment in those programs is down.