Board of Regents approves operating budget for 2017–18, 3 new degrees, new aerospace engineering building

Published: June 16, 2017
The University of Colorado Board of Regents

At its regular meeting on Thursday and Friday at the University of Colorado Colorado Springs campus, the University of Colorado Board of Regents voted to approve the operating budget for the CU system and all four campuses; three new degrees for the Boulder campus; seven capital construction projects on the Boulder campus, including a new $82.5 million, 139,167 gross-square-foot aerospace engineering building on East Campus; and a contract extension for football Head Coach Mike MacIntyre.

Operating budget

The board voted to approve the fiscal year (FY) 2017–18 operating budget for the CU system and all four campuses. The board had previously voted in April to approve tuition and fees as well as merit increases for 2017-18. Today’s vote finalizes the $4.11 billion operating budget for the CU system, including the auxiliary and restricted fund budgets for the Boulder, Colorado Springs, Denver and Anschutz Medical campuses, as well as for the Board of Regents and System Administration. The total budget for the CU Boulder campus is $1.69 billion.

In the vote, the board also resolved the following:

  • The accompanying operating budgets incorporate the compensation for all personnel as governed by the compensation policy and principles previously adopted by the Board of Regents.
  • The FY 2016-17 amended budget for the Board of Regents, System Administration, the Boulder, Colorado Springs, Denver and Anschutz Medical campuses reflect the anticipated changes in general fund, research and auxiliary revenues and expenses.
  • If general fund revenue exceeds the initial FY 2017-18 budget by greater than 1.5 percent, the campuses shall seek approval from the president and the Board of Regents prior to spending the revenue, consistent with the Budget and Net Position Internal Reporting policy.

New degree programs

On Thursday during the Academic Affairs subcommittee with Regent Sue Sharkey presiding, the board voted to approve three new degrees for the CU Boulder campus.

New Arts of the Americas doctoral program
The Department of Art & Art History’s (AAH) new doctorate in arts of the Americas will emphasize the cross-cultural circulation of visual culture in the Americas from ancient to contemporary times. No art history program in the United States offers such a degree; nor does any Colorado institution currently offer the terminal degree in art history.

The interdisciplinary program would encourage students to think across subfields (such as pre-Columbian art, colonial Latin American art, modern and contemporary Latin American art, Native North American art, modern and contemporary American art) and bring art history into dialogue with various disciplines in the humanities, social sciences and natural sciences.

New post-baccalaureate Bachelor of Science degree in applied computer science (online only)
The board also approved the creation of a new post-baccalaureate (or “second degree”) bachelor’s degree in applied computer science (ACS) within the College of Engineering and Applied Science. The program represents a new degree for professionals in fields that benefit from computing, but who do not have the prerequisite courses needed to pursue graduate study and therefore cannot enter that field. The degree will be structured as an online program.

New Bachelor of Arts degree in statistics and data science
The bachelor’s in statistics and data science is intended to produce alumni who will have a STEM-based understanding of statistics and its applications. The degree, which will be offered by the Department of Applied Mathematics in the College of Arts and Sciences, will prepare students for a wide range of careers in engineering, economics, data science, public health, epidemiology, insurance, forestry, psychology, social justice and human rights, and more.

No other university in the state offers an undergraduate degree program in statistics and data science, so this degree will increase the ability of CU Boulder to attract high-quality resident and nonresident students and enable the Boulder campus to place its alumni in highly desirable positions at top companies, national labs and graduate programs.

Capital construction projects

On Thursday, the board also approved seven capital construction projects for the Boulder campus, including the following:

  • A new $82.5 million, 139,167 gross-square-foot aerospace engineering building on East Campus that is slated to be built in time for the fall 2019 semester and will house the entire Ann and H.J. Smead Department of Aerospace Engineering Sciences department.
  • A new $96.7 million, 700-bed residence hall at Williams Village that is scheduled for completion in time for the fall 2019 semester.
  • A $75 million comprehensive renovation of the Hellems Arts and Sciences building to address deferred maintenance and programmatic upgrades. As part of the plan, CU Boulder will seek $31.8 million in state capital construction funds for the capital renewal portion of the project.
  • A $24.7 million comprehensive renovation of the Guggenheim Geography building to address deferred maintenance and programmatic upgrades. Campus plans to fund $14.8 million in programmatic improvements and seek $9.9 million in state capital construction funds for the capital renewal portion of the project.
  • A $10.9 million shelled space build-out in the Jennie Smoly Caruthers Biotechnology Building’s Academic E-Wing.
  • A $9.96 million shelled-space completion in the new Center for Academic Success and Engagement (CASE) building that is being constructed atop the Euclid Parking Garage.
  • A new $4.03 million pedestrian bridge spanning Boulder Creek that would connect CU Boulder’s properties north of the creek to the Buff Walk along the east side of Folsom Field. CU Boulder has applied for matching funds from the Federal Emergency Management Agency that would cover about $2.85 million-worth of the project.

Contract extension-amendment of CU Boulder football Head Coach Mike MacIntyre

The board also voted by consent agenda to approve an amendment of the existing multi-year employment agreement for Mike MacIntyre as head football coach for the period January 1, 2017, through December 31, 2021.

Board leadership elections

At the conclusion of the public meeting on Friday, the board held leadership elections to select the chair and vice chair of the board for the coming year.

Regent Sue Sharkey, a Republican from Colorado’s 4th Congressional District, was elected in a 5–4 decision, narrowly defeating Irene Griego, who has served as chair of the board for the past year. Sharkey was elected in 2010 to serve her first term on the CU Board of Regents and re-elected to a second term in 2016. Her six-year term ends in January 2023.

Regent Linda Shoemaker, a Democrat from Boulder, was elected board vice chair.

For more details or to see presentations from the meeting, visit the BoardDocs website.