UofL budget to focus on student success, financial stability Cut in athletics fee helps offset part of tuition increase

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    LOUISVILLE, Ky. – The UofL Board of Trustees on Wednesday approved a $1.2 billion budget focused on improving student success, enhancing recruitment and retention and improving the university’s financial sustainability. 

    The budget includes $14 million for student-based initiatives, including $5 million for student recruitment, $5 million for student success and retention initiatives and almost $4 million for additional financial aid.

    In-state undergraduate students will see a 3.5-percent tuition and fee increase, to $11,460 per year, which includes a 50-percent cut in the student athletics fee, from $50 to $25 per semester. In-state graduate students will experience a 3.6-percent increase, to $12,684.

    UofL President Neeli Bendapudi stressed that officials worked to keep increases low and to direct additional funding to services and programs that benefit students.

    The university also will experience a 5-percent cut to its general fund budget, which equates to a 1.7-percent cut to its overall budget. Deans, vice presidents and other campus leaders will determine how to make the cuts in their units.

    “This budget is not ideal, but we have to work with the financial resources we have,” Bendapudi said. “We are focused on protecting and improving the education and the university experience for all our students.” 

    UofL continues to deal with diminishing state funding, a huge budget deficit created by a previous administration and a push from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools to improve its liquidity, or cash on hand. The state appropriation for UofL dropped 5 percent, from $132.8 million to $126.7 million.

    “I ask for your patience and support as we make changes to strengthen the university while dealing with our fiscal reality,” Bendapudi said in a recent note to faculty and staff. Calling the current budget a “short-term fix,” she promised that long-term solutions will be developed with the students’ best interests in mind. 

    — #WeAreUofL —

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    John Karman, III
    John Karman joined the Office of Communications and Marketing in 2014 after a 20-plus year career as a Louisville journalist. He has served as director of media relations since 2015. In that role, he answers reporters’ inquiries and is the university’s main spokesperson. John was a reporter for Business First of Louisville from 1999 to 2013. There, he won numerous awards from the Louisville chapter of the Society for Professional Journalists and American City Business Journals, parent company to Business First. John can die happy after seeing the Chicago Cubs win the 2016 World Series, although he would also enjoy another title.