At its regular meeting on Thursday and Friday at the University of Colorado Colorado Springs, the University of Colorado Board of Regents heard tuition proposals for the 2016-17 academic year, approved changes to CU-Boulder academic programs, approved new contracts for CU-Boulder head coaches and more.
Board hears proposals for 2016-17 tuition plan
On Friday afternoon, the regents heard two proposals for a new tuition plan for CU-Boulder. One would offer resident students a fixed tuition guarantee of a one-time 5 percent increase and then flat for four years from the date that they matriculate, while the other would offer a set 3 percent annual increase for four years. Read a Q&A with Chancellor DiStefano about the proposed tuition plan.
New experience design, other degrees updated
The board voted unanimously by consent agenda to approve a new CU-Boulder degree, a Masters of Fine Arts in Experience Design. They also approved name changes for MA and PhD degrees in Education, a proposal to split the current Master of Science Engineering Degree into two distinct degrees and to change the Masters of Science in Business Administration into four distinct degrees. Read more about these changes to CU-Boulder academic programs.
Funding for athletics facilities renovations
The board approved CU-Boulder’s request for a final $6.3 million in additional funding needed to complete renovations and expansions of facilities around Folsom Field. The total final cost of the project is $166.2 million, $24 million over the original cost of $142.2 million.
Some regents expressed disappointment in the cost overruns, but stated they were glad to hear that process improvements have been put in place to help manage this important addition to the Boulder campus and future capital construction projects. Read more about Athletics facilities funding.
Colorado Department of Higher Ed (CDHE Update) – Lt. Gov. Joe Garcia
Lt. Gov. Joe Garcia, who also serves as executive director of the Colorado Department of Higher Education, addressed the board to discuss state funding to higher education and the impact on the University of Colorado. Garcia explained that Gov. John Hickenlooper's proposed $20 million budget cut to higher education for the 2017 fiscal year will likely result in a 2.2 percent cut in state funding ($4M) across the University of Colorado.
Garcia praised CU-Boulder for its rising six-year graduation rates and its work to enroll and graduate underrepresented students, and said that all four campuses have been leaders in helping Colorado's workforce to become one of the best educated in the country.
The board passed a resolution of appreciation for Garcia, who is stepping down from his position in May, recognizing him for his service to higher education in Colorado.
Boyle, Mahoney contracts approved
The board also approved a proposal to extend Head Men’s Basketball Coach Tad Boyle's contract for one year under its current terms. In this same vote, the board also approved a new three-year contract for new Head Volleyball Coach Jesse Mahoney.
Update on University of Colorado Connect
University of Colorado Colorado Springs Chancellor Pamela S. Shockley-Zalabak provided an update to the board on the online programs being offered by the CU campuses. Shockley reported that total number of courses offered, number of students taking online courses and number of students who are exclusively taking online courses have all increased since the fall semester. The campus provosts have been working to simplify the registration for CU students registering for courses. The board reacted favorably, and Chancellor Shockley promised that this proposal would be submitted in writing.
In other board news
- Colorado WINS (Workers for Innovation and New Solutions) urged the board to approve a $15/hr minimum wage for all service workers (food service, facilities, grounds keeping, etc.) on all CU campuses. Regent Michael Carrigan (D-Denver) applauded the Boulder campus for its work to raise the wages of nearly 500 employees already and encouraged the university to continue this work.
- Vice President of Employee and Information Services Kathy Nesbitt delivered a report on the university’s diversity strategy. Nesbitt showed that from 2004-14 the headcount of ethnic minorities increased from 17 to 26 percent across the University of Colorado. She also discussed the university’s long-term diversity plan, clarifying that the plan is not just about recruitment of students, but that it also considers elements such as how the university allocates its money and the multicultural competence of faculty and staff, among other factors.
- The board passed a resolution that the University of Colorado campuses may implement policy offering in-state tuition status to students who are dependents of honorably discharged members of the armed forces who have resided in Colorado for any period of time prior to enrollment and can otherwise establish domicile in Colorado.
- Valerie Simons, CU-Boulder’s Director of Institutional Equity and Compliance and Title IX Coordinator, presented to the board about CU-Boulder's sexual misconduct survey results.