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Sept. 19, 2003
What it costs taxpayers to
provide you with an education at
California State University, Fresno
By Edward Davidian, Staff Writer
Sacramento lawmakers cut the 2003-2004 University of California
budget by $248,000,000 last week. Then went on to cut funds
for the California State University system by $345,200,000.
Community colleges were cut by $250,000,000.
In the face of these drastic
cuts present salary levels are on the block, as well. At present,
average full-time pay for a professor is $108,180; assoc.
professors $ 69, 534.
The graduation rate form Fresno
State is only 42%. Catch this, the total costs of operation
of the statewide CSU System is a whopping $15,106,121,000
The number of bachelorís degrees
awarded annually has increased over the past 3 decades, climbing
from nearly 800,000 in 1969-1970 to over 1.2 million in 1999Ė20001
(U.S. Department of Education 2002).
As of the early 1990s, the average
number of years between high school graduation and completion
of a bachelorís degree had been increasing. For example, the
percentage of bachelorís degree completers graduating within
4 years after high school declined from 45 percent to 31 percent
between 1977 and 1990.
At the same time, the percentage
of students taking more than 6 years after high school graduation
to complete a bachelorís degree increased from 25 percent
to 32 percent.
Time required to complete a
bachelorís degree continues to be of particular interest to
students, parents, policymakers, and administrators. Research
suggests several costs associated with extending the time
to complete a bachelorís degree.
Costs for individuals may involve
paying additional tuition or giving up earnings while enrolled.
Institutions may incur greater support or other costs for
students who complete a bachelorís degree in more than 4 years
than for students who complete the degree within 4 years.
Finally, society may also face costs
due to the longer period needed to obtain returns on the investment
of public funds in undergraduate education. The California
State University budget plan contains unallocated reductions
of $21.1 million to California State University, Fresno.
This is approximately 12.4 percent
of our prior year base budget. To help mitigate the impact
of reductions to the CSU, the Board of Trustees implemented
a 30 percent student fee increase. This fee increase is projected
to offset our campus reductions by approximately $9.2 million.
We will receive $7.5 million in new
enrollment growth funding. This leaves us with a $4.4 million
net budget shortfall. The budget signed by the Governor reduces
the enrollment growth funding for the system from a 7% increase
to a 4.3% increase. In addition, the bill specifies that there
shall be no enrollment growth for 2004-05 and no employee
compensation increases for 2004-05.Our enrollment target has
been reduced to 17,428 FTES for 2003-04.
As a result, CSUF president
John Welty, just announced "...We have taken the following
action with regard to enrollment in 2003-04 and 2004-05: (1)
Applications for the fall 2003 semester are closed; (2) Applications
for spring 2004 will be accepted for one month only, from
Aug. 1-31, from upper-division students with 56 or more units
and returning students. Graduate students may apply from Aug.
1 to Sept. 30 for spring; (3) The campus is not accepting
applications from first-time freshmen or lower-division transfer
students for the spring 2004 semester; (4) Applications for
the fall 2004 semester will be accepted beginning Oct. 1,
2003...Of the $21.1 million in reductions to our campus, $17.1
million were expected since the Governor's initial budget
plan was published in January. In consultation with the University
Budget committee, the campus has spent much of this past spring
diligently working toward making these initial budget reductions.
The additional cut of approximately
$4 million was the result of the budget passed by the Legislature
this past week.As many of you know, our campus developed a
contingency plan to address $4 million in additional reductions
in early May...This contingency plan now will be implemented.
Unfortunately, this will include
reducing the size of our work force by reducing the number
of MPP positions by 10.5 FTE. Individuals in those positions
affected may not be retained, may be reassigned to vacant
positions, or have their time base reduced.
Actions we are taking for affected
MPP's are consistent with collective bargaining agreements
which generally require that other options be considered for
those people whose positions are affected by work force reduction
decisions. I understand that this is a transition that touches
individual careers and I like to would remind us all of the
need to be supportive of those who are asked to make changes
in their career paths."
[Editor's Note: The US Dept.
of Education publication NCES
2002-165 is an excellent research study of Bachelor's
Degree Recipients in the US, 1 year later.]