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U of M FY19 budget proposal highlights core operations across the system

University seal

What: University of Minnesota Board of Regents meeting
When: Thursday, May 10 and Friday, May 11, 2018
Where: Sixth floor, McNamara Alumni Center, 200 Oak St. S.E., Minneapolis

University of Minnesota President Eric Kaler’s proposed operating budget for fiscal year 2019 reflects the major pillars that define his vision for the University: excellence in the education, research and outreach mission; affordability; and a promise to reduce administrative costs by $90 million over six years. The University’s Board of Regents will review the President’s recommended budget during its May meeting.  

The fiscal year 2019 budget focuses on directing resources to core operations, including technology infrastructure, student services and support, facilities maintenance and compliance requirements.

Maintaining affordability

The President’s proposed operating budget recommends holding tuition flat for resident undergraduates on the Crookston, Duluth and Rochester campuses, and it recommends a 1 percent resident undergraduate tuition increase on the Morris campus. The increase represents the Morris campus’ strength in recruiting and the improved demand of the system’s public liberal arts campus.

The budget recommends a 2 percent tuition increase for resident undergraduates on the Twin Cities campus. This represents a $258 increase that may be offset for students qualifying for the Minnesota State Grant Program or the Pell grant, both of which are expected to increase this coming year.   

Student fees and room and board rates are proposed to rise on all campuses. Proposed increases in the total cost of tuition, fees and room and board for resident undergraduates will range from 0.8 to 3.0 percent, depending on which campus a student attends. The Twin Cities campus includes a 4.7 percent increase in room and board costs, in large part due to the ongoing renovation of Pioneer Hall, approved by the Board in September 2016.

Graduate and professional tuition rates remain market competitive, with some disciplines held flat and others minimally increased.

Additionally, the budget maintains the current levels of support for the University’s Promise Scholarship Program. The Promise Scholarship, coupled with other aid, helps ensure that the vast majority of Minnesota undergraduate students with family incomes less than $50,000 pay zero tuition. The total number of students eligible for the Promise Scholarship (at all levels of support) is projected to be approximately 15,000, supported with more than $28 million in Promise scholarships.

Commitment to operational excellence

In the continued commitment to reduce administrative costs by $90 million over six years to reinvest in other priorities, the budget includes an $11.6 million reduction in administrative costs. Fiscal year 2019 is the final year of the President’s six-year plan, and with the implementation of the President’s budget, the University is on track to meet that goal.

The Board is expected to vote on the President’s recommended operating budget during its June meeting.

Systemwide Strategic Plan: Medicine & Health

The Board is also expected to discuss the Medicine & Health focus area of the Systemwide Strategic Plan. President Kaler and Dean of the Medical School and Interim Vice President for the Health Sciences Jakub Tolar will provide an overview of the priority areas identified for Medicine & Health: progressing toward an academic health system, enhancing the prestige of the Medical School and opportunities for aligning with the state of Minnesota for health policy and workforce needs.

This is the third of five systemwide strategic planning focus area presentations to the Board. The first update in February was focused on Outreach & Public Service, the second in March was on Research & Discovery, and the remaining updates include Teaching & Learning and Supporting the Mission.

The Board is also expected to:

  • Discuss the University’s efforts systemwide to improve students’ health and wellbeing, with special attention to students’ mental health resources.
  • Continue the year-long conversation on the University’s outreach mission in the 21st century, highlighting a plan of action that identifies outreach goals for the short- and long-term future, proposes principles to guide future investments in outreach work and articulates steps to optimize the University’s delivery of high quality outreach that maximizes the University’s impact across the state.

For more information, including future meeting times, visit the Regents website

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