The University Record, July 19, 1999

Tuition increase—2.8%—lowest in years; units encouraged to mount 3–5 percent salary programs

By Jane R. Elgass

To view FY1999-2000 General Fund operating budget and student tuition and fee rate tables for the Ann Arbor campus, click here.

Cantor
The University will be able to focus on its highest academic priorities in the coming year with the lowest percentage tuition increase in more than a decade, thanks in large part to a generous state appropriation.

Tuition for all undergraduates—resident and non-resident, lower- and upper-division—will increase 2.8 percent. Tuition for most graduate students will increase 3 percent.

“Thanks to more than 150 years of state support and wise stewardship of the people of this state, Michigan is a great university,” said Provost Nancy Cantor at the July Regents’ meeting. “We are especially fortunate in the coming fiscal year in that we will benefit from an unusually generous increase in the state appropriation to the University. This permits us to ask the Regents for the lowest percentage increase in undergraduate tuition rates that we have sought in more than a decade. We hope that this combination—generous state appropriations and modest tuition increases—constitutes a formula that can be repeated in the years to come.”

Gov. John Engler, in a letter to the House of Representatives, noted that this year’s appropriations bill was intended to provide incentives for public universities which showed restraint by increasing tuition at or below 3 percent. “I am very pleased that we have been able to recommend a budget and a tuition increase that is good for our students and their families and also lower than the governor’s and the Legislature’s goals,” Cantor said.

The University’s state appropriation this year increased by 4.75 percent to $338.9 million, the highest increase in four years. Internally, the University has been able to save $1 million by reorganizing its instructional technology support programs and another $500,000 through programs that have reduced workers’ compensation costs.

The University also has reallocated millions of dollars toward its highest priorities, and has directed the largest share of its new revenues to academic programs. The total share of the budget devoted to academic programs increases again this year, Cantor noted.

Overall, general fund budget revenues this year—$928.3 million—are 4.27 percent higher than last year. More than three-quarters of the new revenues will go to expenditures for academic units—the schools and colleges and related activities—whose expenditures will increase by an average of 5.23 percent. Increases in administrative and service unit budgets will average 3.4 percent, and increases in general expenses, such as utilities, will average 1.63 percent.

Major University priorities outlined by Cantor include retaining faculty and staff, solidifying on-campus institutions that add to our “shared public culture,” and enhancing learning environments for students. “All of these are inextricably intertwined,” Cantor noted.

Retaining faculty and staff

“We must retain the faculty and staff who help make this the great public research university that it is,” Cantor said. Competition for faculty among the best schools in the country is fierce. She noted, for instance, that when LS&A faculty receive job offers from other institutions, the offers are, on average, 40 percent higher than their current U-M salary. “Deans repeatedly tell us,” she said, “that their highest priority for incremental funds is to shore up the salaries of those faculty most vulnerable to outside offers.”

Retaining and recruiting the best faculty requires not only an investment in salaries but also provision of the advanced technology and state-of-the-art laboratories and computer networks required for their teaching and scholarly work, particularly in the sciences.

Recent startup packages for College of Engineering senior faculty have averaged $260,000. In some areas, such as biomedical and chemical engineering and materials science, the costs can run as high as $800,000.

Cantor added that staff quality is an “important determinant of faculty quality.” Faculty rely on the support of numerous individuals, from departmental secretaries to public safety officers, allowing them to focus on learning and teaching. The higher the quality of support, the easier it is to attract and retain the best faculty. “Michigan,” she said, “has a reputation as a good place for faculty to work in no small part because of the competence and dedication of its staff.

“We are extremely fortunate to have a superb and highly dedicated staff,” Cantor added, but because of the tight labor market in southeast Michigan the University faces competition for top-quality staff similar to that of faculty. “We are experiencing sharp upward pressure on wages, increased vacancy rates and difficulty in filling open positions. These exist across all of our units and we cannot afford to ignore them,” Cantor stated.

In a media briefing July 12, Cantor said she has asked units to make faculty and staff salary increases a high priority, suggesting that units average 3 percent–5 percent for faculty and 3percent–4 percentfor staff. Administrative units will receive a 2.5 percent operating increase, and have been asked to use that and internal reallocation to mount their salary program.

Libraries, museums and similar on-campus institutions

These units, Cantor noted, “solidify and enhance the ‘shared public culture’ of the University and sustain relationships between the campus and the community.”

The University is a major artistic center in the state of Michigan, she said. “We have taken steps in this year’s budget to support campus-based creative activity and artistic presentations,” including collaborations with the University Musical Society, the Arts of Citizenship program and the Showcase of New Dramatic Writing.

Support for the University Library will continue to increase and the Museum of Art will have a substantial base budget increase. “With a new director, the Museum of Art is mounting a variety of programs that involve students and faculty from across the campus and that bring students and faculty to a vital area of outreach to broader communities,” Cantor said.

The Clements Library’s Americana collections are an “underutilized treasure.” To make the collections more accessible to researchers and the public, the Library will receive funding that will enable it to put the catalog of its entire collection online and add additional curatorial staff.

Rich learning environments

“We define ‘classroom’ as all of the places where student learning takes place,” Cantor said, “a set of locations that expands year-by-year.”

The budget proposal includes additional support for programs that offer a variety of “classroom” experiences, including:

  • Learning Centers in writing, languages, math and science, established by LS&A to provide a place where students can collaborate with advisers and other students and participate in organized study groups.

  • The Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program, which engages students in research activities with faculty in a wide range of academic disciplines.

  • Learning communities, including expansion of existing ones such as Women in Science and Engineering, and new ones, including a health sciences scholars program.

  • The Center for Community Service and Learning, which expands the physical classroom through engaging students in work with surrounding communities.

  • The Digital Library Project and the Media Union, which enable faculty and students to stay abreast of the ways information technology is changing and how information can be organized and retrieved.

    Cantor’s request for nearly $38 million more than last year, she said, reflects a commitment to these and other programs and “to staffing them with the quality of faculty and support staff that are essential to their success.”

    Cantor noted that students benefit enormously from the University’s investment of its resources in maintaining an outstanding faculty and supporting and improving its libraries, museums and other shared cultural resources. “There is no substitute for an experienced, research-active faculty working directly with students,” she said.

    The provost’s University Budgeting system, now in its second year, combines an activity-based approach—revenue follows the activities that generate revenue—and “conscious deliberation.”

    The primary activity-based revenue streams are tuition and research support. Units receive tuition monies based on their enrollment, giving them “strong incentives to provide instruction of high quality,” Cantor said.

    Units receive an allocation equal to indirect cost recovery associated with sponsored research, also an incentive “to consider the full costs of the sponsored research they undertake and to weigh them against the benefits to the University’s academic mission.”

    Through the deliberative part of the system, all academic units receive a supplement from the general fund, determined by Cantor and President Lee C. Bollinger. “These allocations,” she explained, “are determined in accordance with the University’s academic priorities, with special focus on collaboration and diversity of methods, people and ideas.”

    Increases in these supplemental allocations are necessary for libraries and museums, for example, because they have few direct revenue sources.


    General Fund Budget Table Key

    Academic Units: For these units and others, the two-year average changes are better reflections of administrative priorities than the one-year changes.

    Museums, libraries and other “shared public culture” units are grouped under “University Academic Units.”

    Academic Program Support includes such things as startup funds for new faculty, seed money for new areas of academic inquiry and provost’s support for faculty hiring.

    Research units include the general fund portion of revenues for organized research units that are not in the schools and colleges.

    Administrative Units and other: Reorganization of the Office of the General Counsel that will bring in-house some legal activity now being conducted on behalf of the University by outside legal firms accounts for the 25.28 percent increase. The reorganization is expected to produce savings in the future. Expenses related to the admissions policies lawsuits are not part of this budget. They are covered by insurance.

    The 55.69 percent increase for the Vice President for Government Relations reflects a redistribution of existing funds, the result of a reorganization that created separate units for government relations, vice president and secretary of the university and vice president for communications.

    The 3 percent increase in centrally awarded financial aid parallels, as in the past, tuition increases.

    University Items: The 18.68 percent decrease in the staff benefits pool is largely a result of savings in workers’ compensation costs.


    FY 1999
    Adjusted
    Budget

    Recommended
    Change

    FY 2000
    Budget

    % change
    GF Budget

    Average
    Annualized
    2-yr %
    Change
    in GF Budget

    Revenues

    State appropriation

    $323,485

    $15,376

    $338,861

    $4.75%

    $3.79%

    Tuition and Fees

    459,346

    20,303

    479,648

    4.42%

    4.76%

    Indirect Cost Recovery

    95,241

    1,907

    97,148

    2.00%

    6.90%

    Other Revenue

    12,280

    465

    12,745

    3.79%

    1.57%

    Total Revenues

    890,351

    38,051

    928,403

    4.27%

    4.57%

    Expenditures

    Arch & Urban Planning

    6,565

    526

    7,091

    8.01%

    7.18%

    Art & Design

    4,960

    426

    5,386

    8.59%

    12.97%

    Business Admin

    35,027

    5,538

    40,565

    15.81%

    10.20%

    Dentistry

    20,699

    823

    21,522

    3.98%

    4.04%

    Education

    11,590

    10

    11,601

    0.09%

    2.62%
    Engineering

    82,199

    1,973

    84,171

    2.40%

    4.30%
    Information

    5,293

    2

    5,295

    0.04%

    -0.99%
    Kinesiology

    4,146

    (215)

    3,931

    -5.18%

    11.48%
    Law School

    18,933

    1,867

    20,800

    9.86%

    7.12%
    LS&A

    165,121

    11,485

    176,606

    6.96%

    5.81%
    Medical School

    61,460

    (1,367)

    60,093

    -2.22%

    4.55%
    Music

    17,122

    603

    17,725

    3.52%

    3.75%
    Nat. Res. & Environment

    7,014

    (431)

    6,582

    -6.15%

    5.76%
    Nursing

    8,583

    (17)

    8,566

    -0.20%

    2.69%
    Pharmacy

    6,467

    (116)

    6,351

    -1.79%

    1.00%
    Public Health

    16,781

    1,225

    18,006

    7.30%

    7.69%
    Public Policy

    3,709

    384

    4,092

    10.34%

    11.34%
    Social Work

    12,899

    243

    13,143

    1.88%

    9.37%
    Graduate School

    6,804

    174

    6,978

    2.56%

    5.23%
    Univ. Academic Units

    36,147

    3,292

    39,439

    9.11%

    9.71%
    Research Units

    7,626

    (241)

    7,385

    -3.16%

    10.20%
    Academic Prog. Support

    26,669

    3,476

    30,145

    13.04%

    8.44%
    Total Academic

    565,813

    29,659

    595,472

    5.24%

    6.08%

    President

    1,418

    35

    1,453

    2.49%

    2.25%
    Provost & Executive VP for Academic Affairs

    40,273

    347

    40,620

    0.86%

    1.18%
    Executive VP & Chief Finan. Officer

    97,130

    2,809

    99,939

    2.89%

    -0.23%
    VP for Communications

    2,763

    72

    2,835

    2.62%

    N.A.
    VP for Development

    9,615

    768

    10,383

    7.99%

    8.52%
    VP & General Counsel

    2,190

    554

    2,744

    25.28%

    12.76%
    VP for Government Rels

    932

    519

    1,450

    55.69%

    N.A.
    VP for Research-Support Units

    12,198

    349

    12,547

    2.86%

    1.56%
    VP & Sec. of Univ.

    500

    7

    507

    1.38%

    8.55%
    VP for Student Affairs

    8,584

    503

    9,088

    5.86%

    4.52%
    Total Executive Officer and Service Units

    175,604

    5,963

    181,567

    3.40%

    1.20%
    General Univ. Support

    23,985

    798

    24,783

    3.33%

    1.61%
    Central Financial Aid

    57,879

    1,736

    59,616

    3.00%

    3.46%
    Utilities

    53,214

    566

    53,781

    1.06%

    0.61%
    Insurance

    4,333

    (126)

    4,208

    -2.90%

    -4.09%
    Departmental Income

    6,600

    0

    6,600

    0.00%

    13.76%
    Staff Benefits Pool

    2,922

    (546)

    2,376

    -18.68%

    -19.24%
    University Items Total

    148,935

    2,429

    151,364

    1.63%

    1.82%

    Total Expenditures

    890,351

    38,051

    928,403

    4.27%

    4.40%

    * Detail may not sum to totals because of rounding

    ** Transfers between units are incorporated in the FY1999 Adjusted Budget.