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Frequently Asked Questions

Budget and Enrollment

Why is UNCG planning for budget reductions in 2014-2015? 

UNCG is preparing for a reduction of approximately $12.8 million in 2014-15. Nearly $8 million of that cut is due to a reduction in state appropriations and tuition revenue as a result of a decline in budgeted enrollment in 2014-15.

Most of the remainder of the anticipated budget reduction is contingent on whether the following are included in the 2014-15 state budget that will be finalized this summer: a) the second year of cuts included in the 2013-15 state budget passed by the General Assembly and signed into law last summer ($1.5 million); b) a 2% cut request from the Office of State Budget and Management (OSBM) ($3.1 million). The last piece of the reduction will be used to provide funding for anticipated ongoing Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP) and compliance expenses ($300,000).

How does UNCG plan to allocate the budget reductions?

Each division of the university has been charged with developing strategic approaches to absorbing the cuts, avoiding across the board reductions, addressing administrative overhead, efficiencies and shared services, and placing priority on protecting the enrollment and instruction of our students. The latter point is critical in order to avoid another significant reduction in 2015-16.

The Chancellor will finalize the budget cut allocations in the next few weeks following consultation with university leaders and stakeholders, including, but not limited to, the Executive Staff, Deans Council, Board of Trustees, Faculty and Staff Senate, Department Heads, Budget Sounding Board, and the Student Government Association.

Human Resources has developed a Reduction-in-Force (RIF) Plan calendar and timeline for SPA positions. Please visit https://budgetcentral.uncg.edu/ to download the calendar and timeline.

How does state funding factor into the UNCG’s overall budget?

In 2008, state appropriations comprised 52% of UNCG’s budget. Today, it is approximately 40%. The remainder of UNCG’s budget consists of revenue generated from tuition and fees, grants and contracts, federal financial aid, sales and services, other operating revenue, and gifts. Most of this funding comes with restrictions on how it can be used – such as a federal grant awarded to conduct a research study or a donor’s private gift intended to benefit a scholarship program. For more information on UNCG’s budget please visit: http://budgetcentral.uncg.edu/wp-content/uploads/2011/05/How_Does_UNCGs_Budget_Work_Oct_2013.pdf

Information about revenue sources and operating expenses is also included in the 2012-13 financial report: http://tmp-fsv.uncg.edu/financial-reports/  or the 2009-13 fiscal profile: https://sys.uncg.edu/fiscal-profile-2009-2013/ 

How has the size of UNCG’s enrollment, faculty and staff changed from the academic year 2007–08 to 2011–12?

A study of faculty and staff counts for the period 2007–08 to 2011–12 shows the following:

  • Student enrollment increased by 879 (5.8%)
  • Faculty increased by 83 (10.5%)
  • “Executive and Professional” staff increased by 184 (26.6%)
  • “Other Staff” decreased by 83 (-8.3%)
  • Total staff (non-faculty employees) increased by 101 (6%)

Much of the increase in “Executive and Professional” staff category was the result of reconfigured career bands that expanded the definition of professionals (career banding refers to the state of North Carolina’s compensation management and position classification system). Changes in student support services and other academic-related positions also contributed to the increases in “Executive and Professional” staff category. Positions created in the “Executive and Professional” staff category include titles such as Coordinator, Research Scientist, and Post-Doctoral Fellow. In addition, these data represent personnel funded by both state and non-state sources.

What is UNCG’s current enrollment?

UNCG currently enrolls 14,200 undergraduate students and 3,358 graduate students, totaling 17,558 students. In addition, there are over 100 students who take classes at UNCG through International Student Exchange, and the Interlink program has over 300 students.

How much has enrollment changed since last year?

In fall 2012, UNCG enrolled 14,674 undergraduate students and 3,498 graduate students, totaling 18,172. We also had about 150 International Exchange students, and 240 Interlink students at UNCG. The fall 2013 enrollment is down 3.4% from a year ago. Undergraduates declined by 3.2% and graduates by 4.0%.

If enrollment is going down, does this mean students aren’t graduating?

The number of degrees awarded has actually increased. For the 2012-13 academic year UNCG awarded 3,072 undergraduate degrees. That is 3.9% more than the 2,958 awarded in 2011-12. As for advanced degrees, this past year UNCG awarded 1,109 masters, specialist, and doctoral degrees. That is 1.7% more graduate degrees than the 1,090 awarded in 2011-12.

How can UNCG continue to build buildings in the midst of budget reductions?

The source of funding for capital investment/projects is different from other sources of funding for campus, which include operational funds that are used for salaries and benefits of employees, as well as other costs associated with maintaining the university’s supporting infrastructure. Funds appropriated by the General Assembly for capital investments/projects are prohibited by North Carolina law from being used to fund operational costs.

Funding for building projects comes from a variety of sources, including state appropriations, auxiliary funds (student housing rent, student meal plans and purchases, parking fees, student facilities fees), gifts and grants. The School of Education building completed in 2011 is an example of state-appropriated funding, while the renovation to the Quad is an example of auxiliary funding.

Planning for a major construction project at the university takes place years in advance of construction. During the planning and design phase of the building process, the university is required to identify a source of financing and it must be in place before construction begins. Therefore, the buildings currently under construction are financed with funds committed years ago. In addition, both the UNC Board of Governors and the North Carolina General Assembly must approve capital projects.

In December 2014, the NC General Assembly’s Program Evaluation Division (PED) released a report on UNC system campus operational efficiency. What were some of the findings specific to UNCG?

PED identified three metrics that could be used to measure operational efficiency within the UNC system:

  • Campus operations staff as a percentage of total staff
  • Campus operations positions per student FTE
  • Institutional support spending per student FTE

Exhibit 14 in the PED report shows UNCG in the next to lowest tier of UNC institutions on a measure of Campus Operations staff to 100 student FTE (the lower the tier the more efficient, as described by PED). Exhibit 15 shows that while UNCG’s enrollment grew 7% between Fall 2008 and Fall of 2012, the percent of Campus Operations staff fell by 4%.

Exhibit 13 in the PED report cites that UNCG has the fourth lowest number of Campus Operations staff as a percent of total staff in the UNC system, behind UNC, NCSU, and UNCC (the lower the number the more efficient, as described by PED). The PED’s text accompanying that exhibit states “Comparing performance within type of institution is preferred” and “Size and scope of the institution determines the percentage of campus operations staff.”  However, the report groups UNCG with UNC-CH and NCSU, two institutions in a different Carnegie classification and with significant differences in size and scope of operations. Within the grouping assigned by Carnegie and typically used by the UNC system, UNCG placed second, behind UNCC and ahead of NCA&T and ECU.

Exhibit 16 shows that UNCG’s spending on “Institutional Support” over the three-year period ending in 2011 was higher than our national peers (the lower the “Institutional Support” spending the more efficient, as described by PED). UNCG charges a much greater percent of our IT operations to “Institutional Support” than other universities, including some within the UNC system. UNCG also charges some minor renovations to “Institutional Support” rather than “Operations and Maintenance of Plant.” UNCG ranks in the bottom half (lower Institutional Support expenditures per Student FTE) of all UNC schools on this measure. In fiscal year 2012, UNCG further reduced these expenditures per student FTE and ranked 6th lowest.

UNCG continues to pursue opportunities for improving operational efficiency. UNCG was the first UNC campus to implement an energy savings project with an energy service company (ESCO) that saved, in its first three years, $1.7 million in utility costs and reduced carbon output the equivalent of 3,200 automobiles. This initiative also provided $5.8 million in replacement equipment. UNCG is one of two UNC campuses to meet and exceed the standards for Average Weekly Use of Student Stations (seats) in Laboratories in 2012 and was tied for 5th in the UNC system for Average Weekly Use of Student Stations (seats) in Classrooms (p. 23 of PED report). Additionally, UNCG hosts the Blackboard Learning Management System for three other UNC schools, saving them and UNCG resources (p. 29 of PED report). UNCG will continue to coordinate with the UNC system to enhance ongoing efficiency efforts and implement new measures to streamline, improve and reduce costs of campus operations.

 Tuition and Fees 

What are tuition and fee rates for a resident undergraduate?

UNCG’s resident undergraduate tuition and fees for 2013-14 are $6,323 ($3,932 for tuition and $2,391 for fees). For more information, please visit: http://csh.uncg.edu/

How do our tuition and fee rates compare to those in the UNC system and our national peers?

For the 2013-14 year, UNCG’s tuition rates for an in state undergraduate student are fourth highest, behind UNC Chapel Hill, N.C. State University, and East Carolina University.

UNCG’s fees are fifth highest, behind ASU, UNCC, UNCA, and WCU. In 1994-95, UNCG’s tuition was third highest, behind UNC-CH and NCSU; fees were second highest, behind UNCA.

In 2012-13 (the most recent data available), the total tuition and fees charged to in-state undergraduates at UNCG was lower than the rates charged to in-state undergraduates at all 18 of UNCG’s national peer institutions.

Are students not returning to UNCG due to financial reasons?

Students choose not to return for a variety of reasons including transferring to another institution to enroll in a program not offered by UNCG (for example, engineering), or failure to meet Satisfactory Academic Progress standards established by the federal government.

What percentage of students borrow to support their education?

69% UNCG students report taking out loans to support their education.

What is the average student indebtedness of UNCG students?

UNCG’s average student indebtedness is $24,199. In comparison, NCA&T’s is $28,199 and ECU’s is $25,983. UNCC, the fourth of our Carnegie peers in the UNC system, does not have their average student indebtedness listed on the Project on Student Debt website, the source of this information.

How does UNCG use student fees to support athletics and other student programs?

Student fees support a number of initiatives at UNCG.  Per the UNC Code/Policy Manual, there are four types of fees that must be approved by the Board of Governors.  These are the application fee, general fees, fees related to the retirement of debt incurred for capital projects (facilities or indebtedness fee), and special fees. 

Among the general fees are athletic fees, health services fees, student activity fees, and educational and technology fees.  These are applicable to all students and support athletics as well as numerous other student programs and activities. Special fees are those “applicable only to students engaged in particular activities or courses of study” and are approved when needed by the Board of Governors. 

Each year, the Student Fee Committee carefully reviews all programs and activities funded by general fees and recommends to the chancellor needed increases, which in recent years have been limited to no more than a 6.5% increase annually by the Board of Governors (not including the Facilities Fee). The Student Fee Committee is comprised of a majority of students.

UNCG’s Strategic Plan 2009-14 reflects a commitment to intercollegiate athletics as an element of the undergraduate experience. No funds appropriated by the General Assembly are used to support athletics. As is the case for most of the intercollegiate athletics programs within the UNC system, the student athletics fee funds a significant portion of these activities. One of the university’s goals is to increase the proportion of the athletics budget funded by ticket sales, other revenues, and gifts by alumni and friends of UNCG.

The Facilities Fee is intended to fund student facilities for which state funding is generally not made available. This includes Elliott University Center, Recreation Center, Student Health Center, and athletics facilities. 

As a part of the fee review process, the Chancellor holds open forums to talk with students about the recommended fee increases. Students are able to ask questions and address concerns they may have about any proposed increases. Fee rates are then reviewed and approved by the Board of Trustees and ultimately by the Board of Governors.

Student Recreation Center

Why does UNCG need a new Student Recreation Center?

The current Student Recreation Center opened in 1992 with 89,676 gross square feet (gsq ft). The new Recreation Center is designed to serve 18,000 students and is approximately 216,000 sq ft. Existing spaces are only able to accommodate between 50% and 65% of current demand for high priority activities of cardiovascular fitness, group fitness, free weights, weight machines and indoor walking. As a result of significant student enrollment growth since 1992 and facility usage by students, UNCG is now near the bottom of the UNC system in amount of indoor and outdoor recreation space.

The new student recreation center will limit overcrowding and ensure equipment and programs are easily accessed to provide students with a healthy avenue for engagement. The new center will also have the ability to host campus events that have grown too large for the Elliott University Center and respond to student demand for concerts, dances, career fairs, etc. The facility will respond to and continue to work with academic areas in developing partnerships.

The new Student Recreation Center is designed for recreational purposes that all students can use. Currently, Campus Recreation is the largest employer of students with over 150 student employees. The new Student Recreation Center will result in the hiring of more students to work in the facility increasing the number of student jobs on campus.

Why is the Student Recreation Center important?

Studies have shown that first-year students who used campus recreation facilities not only persisted at a greater rate than those who did not, but their GPA and number of credit hours earned were higher as well (Belch, Gebel, & Maas, 2001). Campus recreation has important responsibilities in terms of promoting the overall well-being of students, helping to reduce negative or destructive forms of play, extending and enriching academic learning and contributing to other college and university goals (McLean, Hurd, & Rogers, 2005).

UNCG believes the addition of this facility will encourage more students to live on campus as well as expand their opportunities for developing healthy lifestyles and improving their academic success, key components of our university’s strategic plan. Freshman-to-sophomore retention rates as well as the four-year graduation rates for UNCG students living on-campus are consistently higher than for students living off-campus.

Have students been involved in the process?

There have been opportunities for student input and approval regarding the new Student Recreation Center. As early as 2007, student surveys and focus groups were conducted to assess campus recreation needs. UNCG has since held a series of open forums, as recently as March 4, 2014, on campus and in the community to receive input on the project. Changes in the size, location and design of the SRC have been made as a result of the feedback. To access the Student Recreation Timeline please visit: http://campusrec.uncg.edu/recreation-center/timeline/

Have the UNCG Board of Trustees and other governing boards been involved in the process?

Financing, land acquisition, and/or design for the construction of the SRC has been reviewed and approved by the UNCG Board of Trustees, UNC system Board of Governors, NC General Assembly, and the NC Council of State. Although NC General Statute 143-135.1 exempts State buildings from municipal building requirements, UNCG has verified with the City’s Planning and Community Development Department that this facility is still consistent with the allowable uses under the current City of Greensboro zoning on the property. 

How will the Recreation Center be financed?

The university will issue 25-year bonds during a time of historically low interest rates.

What is the cost of the new Student Recreation Center (SRC)?

The overall budget is estimated at $91 million—100% funded by student fees. The budget for the Student Recreation Center includes land acquisition, design fees, and construction costs. Actual costs may be less based on modifications of the SRC design.

Is UNCG currently collecting student fees to fund the SRC?

Students are currently paying $435 annually in “facilities” fees for the SRC alone; upon completion, an additional “activities” fee will be added to maintain the new facility. The current estimate for the “activities” fee is $156 although this cost may be reduced based on modifications of the SRC operating budget. UNCG has collected $8.2 million in student fees towards the project through 2012-13. More than $7 million has been spent on SRC expenses.

How do the City of Greensboro’s plans fit with the Recreation Center?

The High Point Road/West Lee Street Corridor Plan calls for “building on the existing anchor uses, including the Coliseum and UNCG, to create a cluster of sports and recreation facilities and associated uses. This hub is roughly located between Lexington Avenue and Ellington Street.” (page 23 of the Plan). Further, the Plan states “The corridor can benefit from the extension of the university’s good image onto West Lee Street, both as a contributor to the character of the roadway and as an economic engine.” (page 26).

How is UNCG working with members of the Glenwood Community?

UNCG has held several open meetings with members of the Glenwood neighborhood (which is adjacent to the site for the new center). Feedback from the Glenwood Community resulted in the recreation center site being moved one block west. Consideration for the residential neighborhood has also shaped the building design. UNCG is working on a Memorandum of Understanding specifically regarding the Recreation Center, which addresses landscaping, parking, site placement of the facility and number of other issues important to both the Glenwood and UNCG communities. There were a number of residents appointed by the Greater Glenwood Neighborhood Association to work with the University regarding the exterior elevations and site planning for the new Recreation Center.

What will UNCG do with the existing Recreation Center?

UNCG is currently exploring options and ways to use the space. The State’s capital improvement plan addresses long term needs and must include all projects, however financed. A project to renovate the existing Recreation Center was included on UNCG’s last plan. It is not unusual for the exact nature of any project on the plan to change in scope prior to finalization.

How much use does the current Student Recreation Center have from students?

rec center use 

10-year history of recreation participations – the number of times cards were swiped for access to the Student Recreation Center

What are some other resources regarding the Recreation Center project?

There are several websites that may be of interest. The Campus Community Development website includes links to the City’s High Point Road/West Lee Street plan, UNCG’s Master Plan, Greater Glenwood Plan, FAQ regarding the entire Spartan Village development, tree conservation, sustainable strategies and Brailsford & Dunlavey Campus Needs Study: http://campusenterprises.uncg.edu/communitydevelopment/.

Campus Recreation has FAQ’s regarding the program and renderings of the new recreation center: http://campusrec.uncg.edu/recreation-center.