Board Sets Budget and Tuition for 2010-2011

The Board of Control Friday approved an operating budget of nearly $159 million for fiscal year 2011, which begins July 1, 2010, a 2.8 percent increase over this year’s operating budget.

The budget includes the following increases in tuition and mandatory fees:

  • 5.9 percent ($22.50 per credit hour) for resident undergraduates, a total increase of $338 per semester for a typical full-time course load
  • 3.9 percent ($30.50 per credit hour) for nonresident undergraduates, a total increase of $458 per semester
  • 4.6 percent ($30 per credit hour) for graduate students, a total increase of $360 per semester

The budget is based on an expected 3.1 percent decline in State of Michigan appropriations from $49.3 million this year to $47.9 million next year. Should the legislature not impose the appropriations cut, Michigan Tech President Glenn D. Mroz is authorized by the Board of Control to reduce tuition and fees.

“State higher education appropriations have decreased nearly 14 percent in the past decade, despite the fact that the University’s full-time enrollment has increased nearly 13 percent,” said Mroz. “We are committed to providing an absolutely first-rate technological education, but that necessitates raising tuition and fees, though we have kept the increase under 6 percent.”

Mroz offered further thoughts on the economic situation. “We realize these are tough times and that tuition increases put students in a bind, especially after the loss of state aid such as the Michigan Promise Grants and Merit Awards. We helped students through those losses by cutting costs and raising scholarship gifts from alumni. Now we are increasing institutional financial aid by $2.5 million because even more students are in need of help.

“The Board has given the go-ahead to lower tuition if state appropriations are not cut as expected,” he said. “Regardless of how that turns out, our objective is clear. We want our students to be able to thrive in a competitive world. They depend on Michigan Tech to deliver an education that will provide them with a competitive advantage for many years to come.”

Cost-containment measures are reflected in the new budget. “Campus-wide, the University is focusing on new revenue sources and cost savings that will enable us to invest in things that enhance our students’ education,” said David Reed, vice president for research. “That includes savings found through streamlining business processes while also seeking new revenue sources. We will continue to pursue our strategic goals of hiring the best people, offering distinctive programs and pursuing innovative research. For example, we are growing the faculty and replacing retiring or departing faculty members with hires in key strategic areas such as energy and health care. In these times, this requires realigning our expenditures to invest in such strategic priorities. And, while this budget does not include an across-the board salary increase, we are recognizing the outstanding performance of faculty and staff by providing for salary adjustments for promotion and retention.”

In other business, the Board:

  • Elected Marty Richardson chair of the Board of Control and Steve Hicks as vice chair. Richardson served as vice chair this year.
  • Approved submitting proposals for two new PhD degrees to the State Academic Affairs Officers. One is in environmental and energy policy. The other is in geophysics.
  • Approved promotions to professor with tenure of associate professors Dana Johnson, School of Business and Economics; David Flaspohler, School of Forest Resources and Environmental Science; Patricia Sotorin, Humanities; and Kathleen Halvorsen, Social Sciences; and promotion from assistant professor without tenure to associate professor with tenure of Shiyue Fang, Chemistry; Jason Carter, Exercise Science, Health and Physical Education; Jeremy Goldman, Biomedical Engineering; Yun Hang Hu and Yu Wang, Materials Science and Engineering; and Guy Hembroff, School of Technology.
  • Approved appointment of Sean Kirkpatrick as an associate professor with tenure. He is the new chair of biomedical engineering.
  • Approved promotion of John Irwin, School of Technology, from an associate professor without tenure to an associate professor with tenure; and Paul Doskey, Civil and Environmental Engineering, from professor without tenure to professor with tenure.
  • Approved revising a bond authorization resolution.

Published in Tech Today