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Updated 10:00 AM August 9, 2004
 

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Student services spared cuts


A number of proposed budget cuts for student programs and services will not take effect after all, and some previous cuts will be restored, Vice President of the Division of Student Affairs E. Royster Harper announced at the Board of Regents meeting July 15.

The cuts that generated much public comment were part of a directive for all units to trim 5 percent from their budgets, Harper said.

President Mary Sue Coleman and Provost Paul N. Courant agreed with Harper's assessment that the reductions would hurt the University's ability to provide important services for students, so they found a way to reallocate funds from within and outside of Student Affairs, she said.

The funding will include:

• $70,000 to create enhanced safe space for sexual assault survivors;

• $27,000 to restore funding to Multi-Ethnic Student Affairs programs and the Pow Wow;

• $8,000 to partially restore funding for Student Activities and Leadership;

• $25,000 to support emerging opportunities;

• Funding to expand to full-time the position of education coordinator in the Office of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Affairs;

• $800,000 for infrastructure repairs and improvements during the next two years on the William Monroe Trotter House Multicultural Center; $200,000 for immediate needs, such as interior and exterior enhancements; and $80,000 in recurring funds to support multicultural programming.

Harper said reorganized University Union programs will use campus resources more effectively, while providing enhanced services. They include a convenience store, recreation and gathering space for students, and two new restaurant offerings at Pierpont Commons; and a grab-and-go food establishment to replace the buffet, longer service hours and wireless Internet access at the Michigan League.

"It is clear to all of us that the budget environment continues to be very challenging," Harper told regents. "Although we don't have as much flexibility in allocating resources as we need or want to have, we are focusing our efforts on keeping our student programs and services as strong as possible under these circumstances."

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