Thursday, March 22, 2018

To our campus community:

As you have likely read, the Iowa legislature has approved a $10.9 million budget cut for the University of Iowa and Iowa State University. While the Board of Regents will determine how to divide the reduction, any loss of funding so late in the fiscal year, which ends June 30, will require difficult choices.

This budget cut continues the generational disinvestment witnessed in public higher education over the last 20 years. Consider the numbers:

  • Since 1998, the state budget has grown by nearly $3 billion
  • UI enrollment has grown by more than 5,000
  • But state funding for the UI has decreased by $7 million

What does this say about our state’s priorities? What does it say to our current students who, within the next four years, will choose whether to stay in Iowa or explore career options somewhere else?

Because of the ongoing disinvestment, the UI must continue our focus on supporting the core mission of the university. Fortunately, working with our campus leaders we have developed a process for dealing with just such a challenge. We now have a model of each college’s economics, as well as the shared services supporting them. Using this information, our deans, along with other key leaders across the university, will recommend steps for cutting expenses and increasing revenues in ways that respond to the legislature’s continued disinvestment without sacrificing our ability to fulfill the goals of our long-term strategic plan.

To fulfill our mission of student success, research, scholarship, and economic development, the university must continue to recruit new talent and provide competitive salaries for high-performing employees. To do that, the university must increase its tuition so that it can compete nationally for the best and brightest faculty and staff. Requesting a tuition increase from the Board of Regents is not an action that the university takes lightly; however, it is now necessary in light of this continued generational disinvestment.

The University of Iowa has a bright future because of the people on this campus, and we have weathered this past 20 years of disinvestment by working together, but it is time for our university to stop just “hanging on.” Let us all re-examine everything we do and agree to focus all of our resources to improve student success, research, scholarship, and economic development. We must press forward and define our future!

Bruce Harreld

Sue Curry
Interim Executive Vice President and Provost

Gail B. Agrawal
N. William Hines Dean and Professor, College of Law

Gary Barta
Henry B. and Patricia B. Tippie Director of Athletics Chair, Department of Intercollegiate Athletics

Daniel L. Clay, PhD, MBA
Dean and Professor, College of Education

Chaden Djalali, Dean
UI Alumni Association Dean's Chair, Professor of Physics and Astronomy, College of Liberal Arts & Sciences

Sarah Fisher Gardial
Dean, UI Henry B. Tippie College of Business and Professor of Marketing    

Lena M. Hill
Interim Chief Diversity Officer and Associate Vice President; Senior Associate to the President

Brooks Jackson, MD, MBA
Professor of Pathology; Vice President for Medical Affairs; Dean, Carver College of Medicine

David C. Johnsen, DDS, MS
Dean, College of Dentistry and Dental Clinics

Terry L. Johnson
CFO & Treasurer

John Keller
Dean, Graduate College; Interim Vice President, Research and Economic Development

John Laverty
President, UI Staff Council

Rod Lehnertz
Senior Vice President, Finance and Operations

Donald E. Letendre
Professor and Dean, College of Pharmacy

Lynette Marshall
President and CEO, University of Iowa Center for Advancement

Peter Matthes
Senior Advisor to the President; Vice President for External Relations

Laura McLeran
Senior Advisor to the President; Associate Vice President for External Relations

Keith J. Mueller, PhD
Interim Dean, College of Public Health; Gerhard Hartman Professor of Health Management and Policy

Carroll Reasoner
Vice President for Legal Affairs and General Counsel

Alec B. Scranton
Dean, College of Engineering

Tejasvi Sharma
President, Graduate and Professional Student Government

Melissa S. Shivers, PhD
Vice President for Student Life

Peter M. Snyder
Professor and Vice Chair, Department of Internal Medicine; President, Faculty Senate 

Julie Zerwic, PhD, RN, FAHA, FAAN
Kelting Dean and Professor, College of Nursing