CU-Boulder is working with over $1 billion to serve an enrollment of 30,659 students this year.
According to the university’s Office of Planning, Budget and Analysis, CU has a budget of $1,139,996,222 for fiscal year 2010-2011. Almost half of this, $485,672,354, is allocated from tuition and fees. Gifts, grants and contracts make up $322,374,926 and auxiliary operating funds account for $148,209,116. The remainder comes from a variety of sources including investment and interest income, sales and services of educational departments and other services.
Funding for the university comes primarily from the State of Colorado, student tuition and fees, grants and contracts. The grants and contract are from the federal government, the state or from private sources.
Ben Gartman, a 22-year-old junior business major, said he thinks that the state contribution this year is sufficient.
“There’s money out there if you want to go to college,” Gartman said. “It’s always nice to get a little more money from the state, but at the same time I’d rather not get taxed more if that’s just going to get passed on to me and other people paying taxes.”
Steve McNally, associate vice chancellor for planning, budget and analysis, said that unlike the private sector, CU puts its extra income back into the university and does not try to make a profit.
“We’re really a break-even entity,” McNally said. “By nature that’s what schools and colleges do. We basically spend the revenue we bring in.”
McNally said the budgets for different schools and colleges are largely a function of enrollment size.
“The department funding is scaled basically on the size of the program,” McNally said. “For example, [the College of] Arts and Sciences is by far our largest school and so therefore they get by far the largest budget.”
Paul Voakes, dean of 1,537 students in the School of Journalism and Mass Communications, said that according to his school’s self-study for accreditation, there is a total budget consisting of $4.3 million of which the general fund accounts for $3,632,829, the gift fund provides $629,500 and the auxiliary fund brings in $95,850.
“The big, big lion’s share of our budget is general fund – that’s $3.6 million,” Voakes said. “Then we also do a pretty decent job of going out and getting gifts from our friends and alumni, and that was over half a million.”
Voakes said sometimes a school creates a business model to allocate funds.
“Every once in a while, a school develops an opportunity to be entrepreneurial and create a sort of little business model for something that it’s doing,” Voakes said. “We do that and we did it effectively enough so that for our current year’s budget, our auxiliary fund was $95,850.”
The auxiliary fund comes primarily from the Ads A2B program, an entrepreneurial program that imparts an intensive advertising curriculum during the Maymester term.
At the beginning of the semester, the provost’s office also provided the school of journalism with a $155,000 reinvestment from the general fund. This additional money will be used for curriculum and instructional enhancements.
These instructional enhancements, to be funded by the provost’s discretionary reserve, include two forms of academic “boot camps”. The first is a digital media course for incoming graduate students. The other is for freshmen who are first-generation college students and is intended to help prepare them academically.
Two other student programs to be funded include subsidizing academic field trips and funding global seminars.
Voakes said that 3 percent of the journalism school’s general fund budget was cut two years ago, followed by a 7 percent cut the next year.
While the future of SJMC may be in question, its budget is not. Voakes said that though the continuation or discontinuation of the school will be up to the Board of Regents, budget numbers are unlikely to change.
“We’re in a cloud of uncertainty now,” Voakes said. “If we do get discontinued our budget will be kept whole and simply transferred over to Regent Hall, rather than vultures coming and picking parts of it off.”
Contact CU Independent Staff Writer Thomas Cuffe at Thomas.firstname.lastname@example.org.
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