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February 26, 2001

Trustees OK operating plan
for FY02

By Michael Terrazas

On Feb. 15, the Board of Trustees approved Emory’s educational and general budget for 2001–02, providing more than $407 million in resources for academic programs and their support.

As in years past, according to Provost Rebecca Chopp, the University put a high priority on maintaining competitive salaries for its faculty and staff. The new budget reserves resources for a merit salary program, an increase in the fringe benefit rate and market adjustments for specific staff job titles. In addition, efforts are being made in arts and sciences, business, nursing and Oxford to keep faculty salaries competitive with Emory’s peer institutions.

Another area in which the University continues to focus its investments is support for research, said Charlotte Johnson, senior vice provost for administration. As new facilities like the Whitehead Research Building, Science 2000-Phase II and, to some extent, the Schwartz Center for the Performing Arts come online, it is imperative that Emory continue to invest in the faculty and provide infrastructure support for their research programs, Johnson said.

“Investments in research support required significant funding in 2001–02 due to increasing federal requirements, the increasing quality of our research faculty and new research facilities,” said Chopp. “An Office of Industrial Contracting and Marketing will be created to facilitate our research work with private industry.

The Office of Research Administration will add a senior compliance officer to monitor and implement new regulatory requirements, and the office will also add a senior research administrator to help build research in targeted schools.”

Chopp said the School of Nursing would be the first to benefit from this new initiative, and she added that the offices of grants and contracts, sponsored programs and technology transfer would also add staff positions.

In addition to advancing the research agenda, this budget also advances the teaching objectives of individual schools’ strategic plans, according to Johnson.

A number of schools will be adding faculty lines, developing new centers, planning new academic programs and enhancing student support, she said. The budget also provides funding to the University Libraries to cover inflationary costs of acquisitions and to help meet the growing support needs of the faculty and students.

Chopp said the budget was developed in a tight fiscal environment and we made careful and deliberate choices about the programs and initiatives funded in this budget plan. “We were able to reallocate about $5.3 million to higher priority programs by identifying efficiencies and managing more closely investments in existing initiatives,” Chopp said. “The deans and administrative managers were thoughtful and thorough in developing their redeployment plans.”

Endowment spending will grow by 6.44 percent from the pooled endowments, said Edith Murphree, associate vice president for administration. Asked if the climate on Wall Street is affecting how the endowment is managed, Murphree said the University has modified the spending rate calculation to smooth out distributions for spending due to fluctuations in the market value of the endowment.

Tuition rate increases, in general, ranged from 4 to 6 percent. Tuition for Emory College will increase by 4.13 percent, its lowest percentage increase in recent history. Enrollments are projected to grow by less than 2 percent.

Overall, Johnson said, tuition revenues grew by 6 percent in this budget. The only school to have a large hike in tuition is nursing, which is the second year of a two-year tuition adjustment plan.

“Although we accomplished much in this budget, we still have issues that will need to be addressed,” Chopp said. “The tight labor market continues to challenge us by making it increasingly difficult to retain staff with certain skill sets and to recruit qualified applicants for certain job titles. Institutions with whom we compete for faculty continue to raise the financial bar. We also must continue investments in technology and research to maintain and advance our competitive


Back to Emory Report Feb. 26, 2001