UTC Vision 2025 - Achieving Excellence

Chancellor Steve Angle and the UTC leadership team are communicating with the campus about short and long-term budget challenges. Issues being discussed include:

  • This is a time of change for higher education. Developments in technology, the creation of the Tennessee Promise which provides a community college education at no cost to graduating high school seniors, and the need to show we are wise stewards of state and tuition dollars all present new challenges for Tennessee’s universities.
  • A UT System analysis shows that given the expectations for tuition increases and state funding, we can anticipate a system-wide budget shortfall of $155 million by 2025; for UTC the amount is projected to be $11.6 million.
  • While headcount enrollment was down by only four students from fall semester 2013, the fall 2014 student FTE (full time equivalent) decreased by 147.1. This will translate into a budget shortfall of approximately $1.1 million over the course of the 2104/15 academic year.
  • At the state level, UT President Joe DiPietro is leading discussions regarding the impact and value of higher education to the state of Tennessee. He is advocating for full funding of the higher education formula and capital funds for building projects.

As UTC develops a new strategic plan, it is an excellent time for the campus to look at our goals and the available resources then develop an implementation plan to realize our vision and achieve excellence. “UTC Vision 2025 – Achieving Excellence” is a process for our campus to address how we take advantage of technology to be more efficient, effective, and entrepreneurial.

“We are not in a crisis, but we can see difficult times coming in the future.  We have the luxury of time, if we act now.  Time to plan and to be deliberate, thoughtful, and creative,” said Chancellor Angle.

In a recent joint meeting of the Exempt Staff Council and the Employee Relations Committee Chancellor Angle stated, “Change is here.  We won’t do business the way we did before.  Funding for education will not return to where it was before the economic downturn of 2008.”

The process called “UTC Vision 2025 – Achieving Excellence" will reallocate 4-5 percent of the base budget, approximately $5-6 million.  There will be three phases as described below.

Phase 1

Unit/College Level Discussions and Recommendations

The process at the college/unit level will be open and inclusive and run by a dean/director in coordination with the appropriate Vice Chancellor.  Each unit will have a budget reduction goal and develop proposals to meet the target amount.  Colleges and Units will consult, work with, and refer ideas to the Organizational Appraisal and Technology Committees as needed.  College/Unit recommendations will go to the appropriate division head and then to the University Planning and Resources Advisory Council (UPRAC).

Organizational Appraisal Committee (campus-wide committee)

Co-chaired by a dean and the Faculty Senate President or Designee.  The committee will have a total of 14-18 members (including the chairs).  This committee will provide campus level review of programs and areas that should be carefully examined.  This committee would allow examination of campus-wide impact of any proposed changes in academic or administrative structure.  The committee will consult, work with, and refer ideas to the Technology Committee and Colleges/Units as needed.  Recommendations will go to the UPRAC.

Technology Committee (campus-wide committee)

Co-chaired by the CIO and a dean.  The committee will have a total of 14-16 members (including the chairs).  It will examine technology in all aspects of campus operations and develop a draft plan for sustainability that includes a budget.  The committee will consult, work with, and refer ideas to the Organizational Appraisal Committee and Colleges/Units as needed.  Recommendations will go to the UPRAC.

Phase 2

Campus Level Input and Review; University Planning and Resource Advisory Council.

Core campus units make up the membership on UPRAC.  Drs. Ainsworth and Brown will co-chair the committee.  All budget reduction proposals and ideas for further study will come to UPRAC for discussion, prioritization, and generation of final recommendations.

Phase 3

Final Decision

The Chancellor will make final decisions and will consult with the Executive Team and Council of Deans and others as needed.

As the campus is engaged in discussions of programs and reorganizations, Angle encourages all participants to be respectful and sensitive.

“The budget issues before us are not a negative reflection on UTC’s health as a university; rather they represent a transitional period for all of higher education,” Angle recently wrote to campus.  “Standing still is not an option for us as a campus.  Change is coming, but if any university is well-positioned for the future, it is UTC.”

The entire reallocation process should conclude by late March 2015.

You can send comments on the proposed process and budget related questions or comments to:

http://www.utc.edu/business-financial-affairs/budget-chatt.php