NEW: Q: Where would one find the current pay-band for Georgia Southern employees? Other USG institutions publish pay-bands on their website; will our university do the same?
A: Employees will learn more about the pay-bands, and we will post information about them online, after final review and approval of our budget by the University System of Georgia.
NEW: Q: What is covered under the strategic priority of “Student Success/Enrollment Growth/Retention”?
A: That includes:
- An expanded enrollment services center for incoming students so they can find most of what they need in one location (approx. $1M)
- Funding to expand counseling and mental health services for students (approx. $500,000)
- Additional funding for military affairs office (approx. $20,000)
- Funding for Wexford operations in Ireland (approx. $200,000)
- Funding for college budgets to offset lost revenue for online tuition differential decline ($567,000)
Q: What does “Performance Excellence” have to do with the budget redirection?
A: The budget redirection was necessitated by a drop in enrollment, but the process is focused on how we can work together across Georgia Southern to better serve our students and what we can do to operate more efficiently as a university.
Q: Why did we have to do a budget redirection?
A: As this PowerPoint explains, fall headcount declined by 1,297 students, or 4.7%, since FY 2012. The reduction in revenue has had a significant impact on our budget.
Q: Isn’t this another symptom of consolidation?
A: Enrollment has been flat or declining for the last six years, since well before consolidation. Going forward, the priority is to stabilize our budget for all of Georgia Southern.
Q: So, what was cut?
A: Vice presidents took advantage of retirements, voluntary departures and duplication of efforts. This effort was helped by the critical hire process and informed by the Comprehensive Administrative Review.
Q: Why has enrollment been dropping?
A: Georgia Southern is not alone. Enrollment increased at 12 institutions across the University System of Georgia last year, while it decreased at 14 institutions.
Q: What are we doing to attract more students?
A: This is an effort where every employee plays a significant part. Everyone can make a difference. A new university strategic plan is underway that will ensure that we are meeting the needs of a diverse student population and a growing, changing regional economy. Additionally, a strategic enrollment plan and a major branding effort are being planned in support of the university strategic plan, which will align our efforts across the institution and throughout the region to enhance our ability to attract and retain students throughout every step of their educational journey.
Q: If enrollment has been dropping since 2012, why are we doing a budget redirection now?
A: We have managed to this point because we had budgeted conservatively and built up our annual contingency, or reserves, in our operating budget. Over the years, we have continued to eat away at that contingency by investing in new faculty and staff positions and other investments.
Q: So if enrollment goes up, where does the extra money go?
A: Our budget priorities for the next fiscal year are to support enrollment growth and retention, implement results identified by faculty and staff salary studies, fulfill our share of the proposed 2% merit increase for employees, and restore our annual contingency.
Last updated: 7/31/2019