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Division of Student Affairs

Presentation focuses on funding of auxiliary operations

Posted on Thursday, April 15th, 2010

Facts about auxiliary operations in Student Affairs – how they are defined and how they are funded – were the primary focus of this semester’s meeting of Student Affairs’ P&S staff. Vice President for Student Affairs Terry Hogan defined auxiliary and quasi-auxiliary, clarified key differences between the various auxiliaries, and reviewed the purpose of each.

“Our auxiliary operations are different from each other in how they support the institutional mission and relative to their revenue mix,” said Hogan. “Some are more accurately described as quasi-auxiliary because they partially support general fund purposes while relying on sources of revenue outside the general fund.”

The units categorized as auxiliary in the UNI accounting system are Residence, Maucker Union, Student Health Clinic, Counseling Center, Wellness and Recreation Services (WRS), and Student Disability Services. The combined budgets of these units are $40.2 million with net general fund support of $1.2 million, or just under 3%. The balance of the budgets are funded through mandatory student fees, room and board fees, fees for service, health insurance reimbursements, sales of products and services, rentals and leases, sponsorships and private gifts.

Two of the operations – Residence and Student Health Clinic – are self-supporting, and Residence pays provides approximately $700,000 in overhead to the University that helps offset general fund expenses. Counseling Center, Maucker Union, and Wellness and Recreation Services were described as “quasi-auxiliary” in that they rely on a mix of general fund support along with other sources of revenue. Student Disability Services relies 100% on general fund support

“These student services are important to the operation of the University, and support the academic program in very direct ways,” said Hogan. “As used here, ‘auxiliary’ should not be misinterpreted to mean ‘ancillary’ or ‘unimportant.’”

As examples, Hogan noted that embedded within the budget of WRS are resources that support Violence Intervention Services, Substance Abuse Services, Student Health Education, Employee Wellness Programs, and HPELS and other academic programs, all of which are appropriate recipients of general fund support. Currently, 53% of its budget is provided by the general fund.

Maucker Union serves the entire campus community. Last year, 57% of its scheduled events were hosted by non-student, general fund units such as academic departments and University committees. Its general fund support comprises 26% of its budget.

Counseling services were funded 100% by the general fund until budget cuts over the past ten years forced greater reliance on the mandatory student health fee. It relies currently on the general fund for 33% of its support. The Counseling Center provides mental health service intended to help students remain enrolled and achieve their academic goals.

Finally, Student Disability Services relies most heavily on the general fund -- 100%. The unit provides specialized academic support services for students with disabilities, fulfilling UNI’s obligation to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Looking ahead, Hogan noted that budgets would likely continue to shrink.

“Regardless of the appropriateness of general fund support for our auxiliaries, the reality is that there is less general fund money to go around,” Hogan said. “We will need to continue to reduce our reliance on the general fund where possible and appropriate. We will reduce energy expenditures, continue to be creative about generating new revenues, and improve our overall efficiency while continuing to meet the needs of the students, faculty, staff and community members we serve.”

The presentation that was shared at the meeting is available below.