SOMERS, WIS. – The University of Wisconsin-Parkside is planning to expand its campus in ways that will enhance the campus’s identity and unify the university community, the Board of Regents learned at its March meeting on Thursday (March 8).

UW-Parkside is creating its master plan to guide the development of facilities that will meet the needs of students and staff on campus well into the future, according to Bill Streeter, vice chancellor of administration and fiscal affairs, who offered a brief overview of the campus.

“We are the most diverse campus, percentage wise, in the UW System,” Streeter said. “Half of our students work more than 16 hours per week and the majority of our students are commuters.”

Because of the unique student population, the university devoted a great deal of time to student input during the development stage of the master plan. Steve McLaughlin, vice chancellor for student services and dean of students, told the Regents that student participation even included student representation on the master plan steering committee.

In addition to meeting with students, architectural consultants met with faculty, staff and members of the surrounding communities to become familiar with the perceived strengths and weaknesses of the campus. The information gathered became the foundation of the master plan.

Regents attended a groundbreaking ceremony for new campus facilities at  UW-Parkside

Regents attended a groundbreaking ceremony for new campus facilities at

“The first principle is to enhance Parkside’s image and identity by making it easier for people to get to, and to get around campus,” said John Desch, UW-Parkside campus planner. “The second key is to keep the campus green and promote and ethic of sustainability. And the third principle is to promote a more unified campus community.”

Following afternoon committee meetings, Regents attended a groundbreaking ceremony for the expansion of the Parkside Union, the first project on a list of more than $100 million of expansion or new construction planned at UW-Parkside over the next few years.

While the Parkside Union is being expanded, a new residence hall will be built. Regents approved construction of the $17 million, 248-bed facility at the December board meeting. The expanded Union and new residence hall should be ready for the fall 2009 semester.

View a presentation on the Master Plan pdf

Regents affirm notion of university center at UW-Waukesha

The UW System is providing ways for more students to earn four-year college degrees in Waukesha County through a variety of options at the UW-Waukesha campus, the Board’s Education Committee heard Thursday.

“I have confidence that we can supply what Waukesha County needs by flexibly and cost-effectively pulling into the county resources from a number of campuses in the region, and around the state,” said UW System President Kevin P. Reilly. “As a matter of fact, we are already doing just that.”

In the coming months, Reilly said the university will determine how else it can meet Waukesha County’s needs by cooperating with Waukesha businesses to conduct a formal assessment of workforce educational needs, as suggested in a letter from state Reps. Rich Zipperer and Steve Nass in a letter to the Board this week.

The Education Committee on Thursday received a report on the estimated costs of expanding educational programming and research-based business opportunities in Waukesha County. The report examined three potential structures: attaching UW-Waukesha to UW-Milwaukee; creating a new, stand-alone four-year campus; and creating a regional university center at UW-Waukesha.

The report, which found that a university center would be the most cost-effective option, was issued by UW-Milwaukee Chancellor Carlos Santiago and UW Colleges/UW-Extension Chancellor David Wilson following requests from business representatives in the Waukesha region for more access to UW opportunities.

“Let’s remember that the request from some in Waukesha County was for more degrees, more students, more educational opportunities, and more research,” Reilly said. “Any expansion at that level of UW offerings in the county will incur some additional costs.”

Facilities for higher-level education would drive some of those costs, Reilly said. Reilly noted that if Waukesha County were to withdraw its tax support even for just existing facilities on the UW-Waukesha campus, taxpayers statewide would absorb a minimum of $1.2 million in annual operational expenses.

Other cost-drivers would include the need to equalize salaries and teaching loads among faculty at UW-Waukesha and UW-Milwaukee, a doctoral campus, said Lynn Paulson, UW System assistant vice president for budget and planning.

“We have a very lean central administration for UW Colleges,” Paulson said. “At UW-Waukesha itself, the administrative structure is extremely lean. We did not identify any efficiencies of a merger.”

Regent Michael Spector of Milwaukee said it is clear that the university has put a great deal of time into studying these options, and should move forward with its plans. “I think it would be nice if we just got on with it,” he said.

By way of background, Reilly and several colleagues explained that UW-Waukesha is not currently a stand-alone institution within the UW System. Rather, Chancellor Wilson noted, it is one of 13 two-year campuses that comprise the UW Colleges, a system that is integrating its administrative functions with UW-Extension. UW-Waukesha offers top-quality academics through a strong curriculum, Wilson said. The smaller campus environment also allows teachers and staff to devote personal attention to students, and to provide expanded opportunities for students to grow.

At the same time, Waukesha County is changing, and UW-Waukesha continues to evolve with it, said Dean Patrick Schmitt. Key to that evolution, he said, is preserving the campus’s core mission of providing a liberal arts education as a foundation for a four-year college degree.

“We are committed to change that looks forward, not to the past,” Schmitt said. “Our model is cooperation, not competition. No single educational institution in that county can be all things to all people.”

Reilly said that UW-Waukesha and the UW Colleges partners with other entities around the state to offer flexible, responsive education for students, especially returning adults who have work and family obligations. These options include baccalaureate degree-completion programs delivered through both traditional and innovative methods.

One of these new approaches, Reilly said, is the work to bring Engineering degrees to more Wisconsin residents. UW-Platteville has hired its own faculty to work at UW-Rock County in Janesville and UW-Fox Valley in Menasha, and will soon do the same at UW-Washington County in West Bend. UW-Platteville Chancellor David Markee said the program with UW-Fox Valley has already graduated 14 students, and expects several more to graduate this spring.

In another example, MBA classes are offered at UW-Waukesha from both UW-Milwaukee and Whitewater, and many nontraditional students in Waukesha use the “Milwaukee Connection” program to bachelor’s degrees in selected fields.

Chancellor Santiago said UWM is committed to providing education to Waukesha County in ways that make academic and financial sense.

The Board also heard from several UW-Waukesha students and area residents.

Joshua Mann, vice president of the United Council of UW Students, urged the Board to keep in mind the interests of students who attend UW-Waukesha for the academics and services it currently provides. In addition, Alan Stager, president of Student Governance Association at UW-Waukesha, said students across the UW Colleges are watching to see how a university center model could impact the services they now receive.

“I would just say that, if and when we do this, we do it right,” Stager said.

Carla Rutley, who spoke on behalf of the Waukesha County Action Network, said her organization and the university both agree that Waukesha County needs greater access to baccalaureate and master’s degrees.

“At the end of the day, what the business community wants to be able to do is take the great students that you’re graduating and employ them,” Rutley said. However, she said her organization feels like it does not have clarity about the figures in the report. She said the group would like to partner with the university on future plans, rather than just contributing funds for further studies.

Lee Esler, a resident of Waukesha County, encouraged the Board to approach the idea of expanding the UW in Waukesha in a neutral manner that makes sure students can access a liberal arts education. He mentioned that the costs to provide mass transit between the UW-Waukesha and UW-Milwaukee campuses may be unmanageable for students and the universities, and he noted that if the campus were to expand, campus neighbors would be unlikely to support the idea of residence halls near UW-Waukesha.

And Tom Mihal, a Waukesha County business leader and graduate of UW-Waukesha, said he supports the idea of implementing a university center as one way to serve the community while preserving UW-Waukesha’s core mission.

“University leaders are sometimes criticized for not “thinking like businesspeople,” but that’s exactly what we’re trying to do here,” Reilly said. “This is education for the 21st century. It is the seed from which can spring a full-blown university center, which, in turn, can serve as a model for other centers throughout the state.”

“Growth Agenda for Wisconsin” advances in Governor’s proposed budget

Regents learned more Thursday about how the state biennial budget proposed by Governor Doyle last month would invest in meeting the needs of the state and the university.

The Governor’s budget funds the major items that the Board of Regents requested in a proposal submitted to the state last summer, according to Associate Vice President Freda Harris.

“Governor Doyle has proposed a budget that would mean very good news for college students, taxpayers, and for higher education in Wisconsin,” said Regent President David G. Walsh of Madison. “The budget would help the UW begin to recover from several biennia of budget cuts. It will also keep tuition to far-lower levels than in recent years. In that sense, it’s a very positive signal that the state is ready to reinvest in higher education.”

The Governor’s budget would preserve quality in the university by covering all of the university’s cost to continue, which include items like fringe benefits and the prior year’s salary increases. This funding is vital for continued operations at UW institutions, Harris said.

Under the Governor’s budget, the UW System also would be able to implement all of its “Growth Agenda for Wisconsin” initiatives in the 2008-09 fiscal year. These initiatives will enhance workforce development and increase the number of baccalaureate degrees in the state.

“The Governor’s Budget would, if supported by the Legislature, help us to increase access to higher education, help us to increase college aspirations among Wisconsin’s children and grandchildren, and help us to and create jobs for the future of Wisconsin,” Reilly said.

The Governor’s budget would also provide $10 million in funding to recruit and retain faculty and research academic staff, Harris said. The funding would be distributed to employees in high-demand, mission-critical areas or for competitive reasons, not across the board, Harris said. She said the Governor’s proposed funding in the next budget includes twice the amount the UW received in the current biennium.

Eventual tuition levels will be determined by amount of state resources designated for the university by the Governor and the Legislature, Walsh said. Harris noted that the Governor’s budget does call for tuition to be used to pay for some costs, but explained that the state’s level of support for faculty pay adjustments would have an additional impact on tuition levels.

“We’re going to have some tough decisions down the road,” Walsh said.

Regent Danae Davis of Milwaukee asked how funding for only the second-year of the biennium would affect UW initiatives.

“Assuming the funding is approved by the Legislature, this will provide a year for our institutions to gear up for the programs, knowing that the resources will be there,” Harris said.

Reilly reminded the Board that the Growth Agenda initiatives were developed to address regional needs identified by UW campuses, institutions, and the Wisconsin residents they serve. The $21.5 million investment of new state funds in the Growth Agenda will allow the university to increase student enrollment, improve retention, and graduate more students, Reilly said, as well as invest in university research enterprises, and programs in science, engineering, teacher education, and nursing.

The “Foundations for Success” initiative at UW-Parkside, one of the proposed Growth Agenda initiatives, would seek to retain and graduate more students by providing increased academic support services and campus opportunities for students.

Tabitha Flores, a third-year student, at UW-Parkside told the Board that these kinds of services and opportunities have helped her thrive in her time on campus.

Flores said she received acceptance, direction and academic support at UW-Parkside, when she didn’t expect that many other colleges would have given her a chance. She said she has participated in campus organizations, such as Latinos Unidos; studied abroad in Mexico; and mentored current and future UW-Parkside students. Flores said her activities have also included serving as a resident adviser.

“I got to meet and work with life-changing people and decorate my resume with opportunities I was blessed with here at UW-Parkside,” Flores said. “I hope that the programs offered will continue to shape the individuals who will eventually run this world.”

Harris said the executive budget also establishes an Office of the Wisconsin Covenant at the Department of Administration, and appropriates funds for the program, which is expected to be offered sometime this year to students who are currently in the eighth grade.

The Wisconsin Covenant will encourage students in the 8th grade to prepare to attend a UW campus, a Wisconsin Technical College, or one of Wisconsin’s independent universities by working hard, getting good grades, and being good citizens. Reilly said the university is working with the Department of Administration as the program is being implemented.

“It was this Board that began early discussions about encouraging more Wisconsin students to consider college by helping them succeed in the classroom, and helping them find ways to pay for college,” Reilly said. “This idea grew from your commitment to improving access to higher education for students from low-income families.”

The budget would also direct funds to the Higher Educational Aids Board to fund the statutory link for the UW-WHEG program, which increases the appropriation by the same percentage as tuition. Walsh noted that the Board will urge that funding for financial aid remain in the final budget bill.

The Governor has also proposed funding that would:

  • Pay for the Regents’ request for utilities and add funding to cover anticipated inflation;
  • Fund increases in debt service on authorized bonds;
  • Increase Lawton Minority retention grants by the same percentage increase as tuition;
  • Adjust the Advanced Opportunity Program by percentages equivalent to the estimated increases in graduate tuition;
  • Increase program revenue for operations such as Auxiliaries, Intercollegiate Athletics, the Veterinary Diagnostic Lab and the State Lab of Hygiene;
  • Direct $250,000 to Islet Transplantation programs, related to research on juvenile diabetes; and
  • Provide $2.5 million of one-time, biennial funding for the Biomedical Technology Alliance, which will be matched by Alliance members. The Alliance was previously funded by a grant from the Wisconsin Department of Commerce. Chancellor Jack Keating said the Alliance is an extension of a state effort previously known as “TechStar.”

The Governor has also proposed providing domestic partner insurance for all state employees, decreasing the waiting period for providing insurance to new state employees from six months to two months, providing resident tuition to certain undocumented persons, and allowing UW faculty and staff to choose to participate in collective bargaining.

The Governor’s Budget also extends the ability of the UW System to retain proceeds from the sale of land through June 2009. This authority was set to lapse at the end of this fiscal year.

The state is being asked to find $40 million annually in savings related to continuous process improvements during this biennium, but it is not yet known if or to what extent the UW would be affected, Harris said.

Regent Tom Loftus of Sun Prairie asked if the Governor’s budget would pay for tuition remissions now guaranteed for certain veterans and dependents under new state law. Harris said the Governor’s budget proposes funding to pay for future increases needed for pay for these remissions, but that the UW System would still have to absorb costs at current levels, which amounted to $7 million 2006-07.

Regent Jesus Salas of Milwaukee also expressed concerns about the impact of utility costs on tuition. Harris said tuition in this biennium paid for a large share of utility costs, but that the Governor has asked that the state pay for its traditional share of 65 percent in the next two years. The Governor also provided funding for expected costs due to inflation, she said.

Regent Charles Pruitt of Shorewood asked if there was more information about how the state would fund the Wisconsin Covenant. Harris said some funding directed for financial aid would begin to build a base of funding that could be awarded to Covenant scholars, but that the Governor’s budget did not include detail about funding for the program. She said that students could have the opportunity to sign up for the Wisconsin Covenant as soon as the end of this fiscal year.

Reilly said the UW hopes to work with the American Council on Education to bring to Wisconsin a national media campaign that encourages high school students to take the necessary steps to attend college.

Walsh said that, in sum, the Governor’s budget invests $180 million of new state funds in the university. He thanked the governor for understanding that the university took its fair share of budget cuts in recent years, and for making a sound effort to reinvest in the UW.

“It’s a long fight ahead of us,” Walsh said. “We will continue to work with legislators. We need to appreciate the issues that they have. I think we have a portfolio and theme that is selling well in Wisconsin.”

Reilly noted that three elected leaders have recently penned columns supporting the Growth Agenda. Governor Doyle, Senate Majority Leader Judith Robson, and Sen. Sheila Harsdorf, a member of the Agriculture and Higher Education Committee, have all publicly stated that the Growth Agenda is important for growing the state’s workforce, supporting students, and strengthening Wisconsin’s economy.

“It will be up to all of us now to work together to ensure that the funding included in the Executive Budget remains in the final bill,” Reilly said.

Education committee recommends liberal arts degree in Chippewa Valley

Committee recommends designating UW-Stout as “Wisconsin’s polytechnic university”

Students in the Chippewa Valley could soon have another path to earning a college degree, following a unanimous Board of Regents Education Committee vote on Thursday recommending approval of a new liberal arts associate degree.

If approved by the full Board on Friday, the associate degree would be offered collaboratively between Chippewa Valley Technical College and four UW System institutions. The program is intended for students who begin their education with intentions of earning a baccalaureate-degree, said UW System President Kevin P. Reilly. He said the collaboration would give students a variety of choices about how to complete that education.

“There is a need in the Chippewa Valley region for a two-year program to provide an entry point for students to enter higher education, and we are not meeting that need at this time,” said Rebecca Martin, interim senior vice president for academic affairs.

Martin said that a high number of students transfer to UW from CVTC, and currently, they do so largely from programs not designed for that purpose.

“Students are telling us how they want access, and we should accommodate that,” said Regent Tom Loftus of Sun Prairie.

Two-thirds of the coursework would be available at Chippewa Valley Technical College locations, and students would be able to choose remaining required UW courses at UW-Eau Claire, UW-Stout, UW-River Falls, or through the UW Colleges Online.

“This will keep costs to students reasonable, while minimizing costs of delivering the programs,” said Ron Singer, UW System assistant vice president for academic affairs.

Martin reminded the Board that technical colleges in Madison, Milwaukee and Rhinelander currently offer liberal arts transfer programs. Last month, the Board of Regents approved criteria that must be met for new programs. Under those criteria, liberal arts transfer programs must enhance credit transfer for students, avoid unnecessary duplication, and draw upon existing strengths and resources of both institutions. The curriculum for this transfer program has been reviewed and approved for transfer by the necessary UW institutions, she said.

Chippewa Valley Technical College President Bill Ihlenfeldt applauded the Board for taking steps to address the needs of students in the region.

“The idea of working with our partners in the Valley is a great one,” he said. “The program is an ideal one. It’s a program we can hold up before the Legislature, and say we are working together as systems.”

He said he was concerned, however, that the proposal did not include a provision to address a situation in which the UW institutions could not offer the required courses. Ihlenfeldt suggested that a “failsafe” provision might be to allow CVTC to offer the needed courses in such a situation.

UW-Eau Claire Interim Provost Steve Tallant said that current Eau Claire students sometimes do not have all the educational options they want, and students in the proposed program may face similar challenges. He noted, however, that UW-Eau Claire works very closely with CVTC on transfer options, and will continue to do so.

“We’ve put resources up there to work with them, and those resources will stay there,” Tallant said.

Regent Brent Smith of La Crosse wondered if the Board could make its approval of the program contingent on accreditation or financial aid.

Singer said UW leaders believe the program will be properly accredited, and that students will have access to financial aid. He also acknowledged that the universities will have to ensure that students clearly understand the degree requirements and the options available to them.

“We’re confident that these challenges will be effectively addressed because both systems have experience with collaborative programming,” Singer said.

Singer said that if the program meets unexpected challenges, the Board could be asked to approve modifications to ensure the program remains efficient and effective.

Regent Elizabeth Burmaster of Madison noted that the UW and the WTCS Boards have different perceptions about what makes their systems cost-effective.

Reilly said the collaborative option maximizes resources because taxpayers avoid additional local property taxes to fund more programming through the technical colleges, and students can take most courses at lower-tuition levels.

Martin said that Board approval is necessary for the program to be in place by the Fall semester.

Regent Eileen Connolly-Keesler of Oshkosh said she believes the program would serve as a pilot, and that the Board could review the program based on outcomes in the near future. Davis said if the program is approved on Friday, she would ask for a report back to the Board in one year.

“It’s about how we’re moving into this new age of inter-institutional, cross-system programming,” Reilly said. “This proposal can be a real model for the future of what we need to do. “

Committee recommends designating UW-Stout as “Wisconsin’s polytechnic university”

UW-Stout would thrive by officially becoming a “polytechnic” university, a designation the Education Committee approved for the Menomonie, Wis., campus on Thursday.

“This designation will give UW-Stout, which already is a very good university, the tools to become a great institution,” Sorensen said. This is who we are, and this is where we’re going for the future.”

The full Board will consider the designation on Friday.

Sorensen said the designation is a good fit with the “Growth Agenda,” and told the Board that UW-Stout already possesses most of the key characteristics of comprehensive polytechnic universities, because the university:

  • Features an array of academic programs in the arts and humanities; education; social, natural and human sciences; math; computer science; engineering and related technologies; and management. The university has particular strengths in the areas of science, technology and engineering.
  • Embraces an applied learning educational philosophy that blends theory and practice in the classroom, and encourages cooperation with business and industry on “real-world” projects that enrich the educational experience for students.
  • Applies technology in all university functions, using technology as a teaching tool and providing technology assistance for faculty, staff and students. This “digital campus” is dedicated to technology-renewal programs to remain state-of-the-art.
  • Promotes technology transfer programs, business incubators, research centers and a technology park — to help students and to foster a close relationship between the university and Wisconsin business and industry;
  • Works closely with the Wisconsin Technical College System and other universities to create seamless credit transfers, initiate new programs — such as the current NanoRite initiative and the proposed NanoSTEM budget initiative — and provide outreach programs for those who are place bound and need further education.

The polytechnic university designation would also strengthen the educational opportunities of students by affirming the applied learning philosophy that is so much a part of UW-Stout, Regents heard. The designation would also enhance UW-Stout’s branding and marketing strategies; broaden the university’s already extensive partnerships with business and industry; solidify UW-Stout’s relationships with other universities in Wisconsin and those in the Wisconsin Technical College System; and enhance the university’s ability to attract outside funding from federal grants and private corporations.

All new programs will be planned under the polytechnic university definition, Sorensen said. A top-to-bottom review of how programs are aligned on campus also will be completed under the polytechnic university umbrella.

View a presentation on the polytechnic designation pdf

–UW-Stout contributed to this report.

In other business, the Education Committee authorized UW-La Crosse to recruit for a provost. Current Provost Elizabeth Hitch has announced that she will leave the campus in May to accept a position in Utah.

UW Colleges striving to be “nimble”

Recommendations from a statewide commission could help the UW Colleges improve how it meets its mission, effectively use limited resources, and meet the needs of Wisconsin residents, Chancellor David Wilson told the Board of Regents on Thursday.

After meeting with audiences in all UW Colleges communities, Wilson said he appointed the 18-member commission of education, community, business and government leaders to help determine the future of the UW Colleges.

The UW Colleges offer education at the lowest-tuition rates in the system, and serve the system’s second-largest number of freshmen, Wilson said. These students are primarily place-bound adult students, or students who go to a UW Colleges campus because they want a quality education at a smaller campus setting, he said.

“We do a superb job of preparing students for what we call baccalaureate success,” Wilson said. “The data will point out that when our students transfer to UW-Madison, UW-Milwaukee or UW-La Crosse, they do better in terms of persistence to graduation than any students transferring form any other institution in the state.” Approximately 78 percent of UW Colleges students earn baccalaureate degrees after transfer.

Wilson said the commission’s key recommendations included measures that would ease access for traditional-aged students who are place-bound, as well as returning adult students; enhance opportunities for residents where they live, and explore whether the UW Colleges should consider providing more residence halls in campus communities.

The commission also recommended that the UW Colleges use the university center model where it makes sense, and continue to cooperate with UW-Extension, other campuses in the UW System, and Wisconsin Technical Colleges.

In addition, the commission recommended that the UW Colleges be allowed to grant some baccalaureate degrees where students are not well-served by other opportunities, he said. Commissioners also suggested that the tuition and funding structure of the UW Colleges could be revised.

One recommendation, that the state consider dramatic changes in how students pay for college, went far-beyond the charge of the commission, but may be considered by university leaders in the future, Wilson said.

Following up on the commission’s recommendations, the UW Colleges are aggressively studying how best to implement university centers on its campuses, and are now studying whether it should provide more UW opportunities in Northern Wisconsin.

“We are exploring how we can be much more nimble as a statewide gateway institution to serving needs in that part of the state,” Wilson said.

Wilson said he will also soon propose a revised tuition structure for the UW Colleges.

Regent Michael Spector of Milwaukee said he would be interested in learning more about how the Regents can tie together issues across the system and strategically determine priorities for the coming years.

“It is the whole picture that we need to understand and put into context,” Davis agreed.

Reilly said he and the chancellors hope to report to the Board in the coming months about how a new strategic plan might take shape.

View a PowerPoint presentation about the Commission on the UW Colleges pdf

Business, Physical Planning agree on segregated fees

Editor’s note: The Business, Finance and Audit Committee summary was updated March 9, 2007.

Consistency and greater student involvement.

These were the major themes when the Board’s Business and Finance Committee and the Physical Planning and Funding Committee met in joint session to discuss segregated fees. These fees are charged to students to fund a wide variety of services and amenities, from operating campus student organizations to student facilities. Segregated fees were also the subject of a recent audit by the Office of Operations Review and Audit, and the audit’s recommendations were examined by a follow-up committee, chaired by Stephen Summers of UW-Whitewater.

“As we worked through the audit recommendations, we felt a very strong need to strengthen Regent Policy 88.6 that is currently on the books but appears, based on the audit, to have implemented not in a consistent manner across the system,” said Summers, UW-Whitewater’s deputy assistant chancellor.

Regent Policy 88.6 directs campus administration to consult with student governance for a timely review of the segregated fee budget by the campus fee allocation committee. Summers said strengthening the consultation process is particularly important regarding fees for capital projects.

The audit’s recommendation on the expiration of debt service payments — ending a segregated fee when what it was paying for has been paid for, sparked the most comment by committee members. Regent Jesus Salas objected to the practice of re-directing fees from completed projects to new ones without consulting students.

“We shouldn’t assume the re-direction of fees if the debt service is retired,” Salas stated. Students must be given the opportunity to voice their opinions about the re-direction of fees, Regent Eileen Connolly-Keesler added.

“Our clear intent was to offer students the opportunity to comment on re-direction of funds,” Summers said.

When one Regent asked if segregated fees ever expired, UW-Parkside Chancellor John P. Keating cited the end of his campus’ fee for the expansion of its Sports and Activity Center as an example.

“They do go away,” Keating said, “when the purpose for the fee is fulfilled.”

Regents voted to make two amendments to the resolution. One amendment restates that students should help formulate allocable segregated fee budgets, and the other eliminated the notion of redirecting segregated fees that were intended for debt service.

The Committee also heard from Julie Gordon, director of the UW System Office of Operations Review and Audit, about a program review from the Office that analyzed oversight practices that U.S. university systems use when implementing large information technology (IT) projects. The report was produced at the request of the Board so it could learn more about options for future oversight, she said.

The review noted that recent, major IT projects at the UW System have included the Shared Financial System, Student Administration System, the Library System, the Course Management System, and the Appointment, Payroll and Benefits System (APBS).

Gordon said the report included two recommendations the Board could consider as it weighs future methods for oversight of IT projects. The internal auditors recommended that UW System management provide the Board of Regents with an exhaustive inventory of major IT projects scheduled for development, as well as regular status reports about major projects as they proceed through the implementation process.

The Committee also heard from Ed Meachen, assistant vice president for learning information and technology, who assured the Board that the UW System has improved its management practices related to IT projects, following the decision to halt implementation of the APBS project.

Committee members agreed to revisit the recommendations included in the internal program review after the state’s Legislative Audit Bureau releases an audit on statewide IT projects.

In other business, the committee:

  • Heard from Freda Harris, Associate Vice President for Budget and Planning, about the fiscal year 2007-08 budget distribution adjustments for the first year of the biennium based on the governor’s budget.  She suggested allocation methods for the funding of faculty recruitment and retention, the Lawton Undergraduate Minority Retention Grant and Advanced Opportunity Program (AOP), utilities, student technology fee, and the employee pay plan when approved, among others;
  • The committee deferred an item related to targeted tuition programs in the UW System; and
  • Discussed and approved salary adjustments for the Chancellors at UW-River Falls (an increase of $7,000 for a total of $185,507) and UW-Whitewater (an increase of $8,000 for a total of $186, 507), and the Provost at UW-Green Bay (an increase of $2,500 for a total of $144, 094).

In closing, Chancellor Keating reported to the Regents on the business side of the university.

He cited the Kenosha campus’s membership in a bio-medical consortium with Milwaukee universities, its sponsorship of Racine’s Center for Advanced Technology and Innovation (CATI), the $5 million in service-learning grants brought in by the UW-Parkside-based Wisconsin Campus Compact, and the hands-on business training provided the Ralph L. Jaeschke Solutions for Economic Growth Center as evidence of UW-Parkside’s commitment to the region’s business growth.

“We are very involved in economic development,” Keating said.

–David Buchannan contributed to this report.

Physical Planning and Funding Committee

The Physical Planning and Funding Committee on Thursday approved a resolution to use state building trust funds for the demolition of the A.W. Peterson Building and the Food Research Institute Building, both on the UW-Madison campus.

The Peterson building is being demolished to make room for expansion of the Chazen Museum of Art.

“In addition to not fitting the value of the site in the center of campus, which the Chazen Museum is a much better use of the site, the building has just outlived its useful and predicted life,” said David Miller, UW System assistant vice president for capital budget and planning.

Demolition of the Food Research Institute Building will allow the university to create a green space with access to Lake Mendota.

“New residence halls will actually be built around it … and enhance that highly desirable residential area,” Miller said.

The committee also approved a resolution allowing the UW-Stevens Point to purchase a property at 1730 Portage Street, Stevens Point, next to an existing parcel owned by the university. The purchase price of $112,000 is the average of two appraisals of $128,000 and $96,000.

Greg Diemer, vice chancellor of business affairs at UW-Stevens Point, said the property will be used as a rental property prior to campus expansion. “We’ve done that periodically as these properties have become available when there’s no immediate need to raze the building and use the land,” Diemer said.

Miller also reported that demolition of White Hall, a residence hall on the UW-Whitewater campus, is being delayed. The building will be used for temporary office space during the construction of Carlson Hall. Once that project is complete, staff in White Hall will move to Carlson Hall and White Hall will be demolished.

–John Mielke contributed to this report.

Photo: Jon Bolton

Related: Read Mar 9 (day 2) news summary