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State of the University, 2007

President John T. Casteen III
February 7, 2007

Welcome, and thank you for coming. I would like to recognize three Board of Visitors members who are with us today: Georgia Willis Fauber, Dubby Wynne, and Board student member, Lizzie Mullen.

I'd like to take this opportunity to introduce a new member of the University leadership. Susan Carkeek, our Chief Human Resources Officer, began work in November. Ms. Carkeek comes to the University with more than 30 years of experience in higher education human resource management, most recently as vice president for human resources at the University of New Mexico.

We have high hopes for human resources because we believe that newer, better ways to do business exist and can benefit both the University and its employees, and Ms. Carkeek is well-prepared to provide innovative leadership.

Just last week Ms. Carkeek introduced a professional development program for newly hired and salaried entry-level University employees. Participants will learn new skills that will help them advance in their careers. And when they graduate, they will receive a one-time, base-salary increase of $600 per year. This is the kind of investment the University should make in its workforce, and it's another reason why the University continues to be the employer of choice in the region.

Today's remarks will cover the University's condition now as well as pressing issues to be addressed for the future. I am grateful for advice received from various groups on the topics to be covered. In some cases, I have been able to use the proposed materials; in some cases, not.

As you know, the General Assembly is gathered in Richmond for 46-day "short" session. The General Assembly members convened on January 10; they are scheduled to adjourn on February 24. The Governor then has 30 days, until March 26, to amend, approve, veto, or take no action on budget and bills. The reconvened session is set for April 4.

The good news for this session is that the Virginia economy is strong, with a $1 billion surplus in the general fund. Areas competing for new dollars include: transportation, healthcare, K-12 education, public safety, and environment. In various senses, this competition reflects some 15-plus years of under funding the state's core priorities. The demands made on behalf of these competitors are by-and-large legitimate. That is perhaps bad news.

The Governor proposed new appropriations of $225M for public colleges and universities to address identified high-priorities, long neglected issues including capital projects and financial aid. This was the 2nd-highest total-dollar appropriation in the budget; transportation was highest appropriation.

The House and Senate released their budgets Sunday. You can follow the movement from day to day in the newspapers—and no, I can't explain whatever happened yesterday yet. We will monitor progress. I am grateful for the leadership's willingness in both houses and both parties to understand the peculiar problems that face the state's public colleges and universities.

Last July, the Restructuring Act took effect. This is a major adjustment of University's relationship to state regulatory agencies, especially regarding spending, tuition, construction, asset management, and personnel management.

New freedoms bring new responsibilities. The University must meet, or continue to meet, a set of state goals. The state goals include: six-year financial plans; setting/meeting financial and administrative performance standards; working with specified K-12 schools or districts to improve student achievement—Clark School in Charlottesville is our partner; stimulating economic development in distressed areas of the state; meeting enrollment demands; and, making college affordable for all Virginia students and enrolling more transfer students from Virginia's community colleges.

Our AccessUVa program continues its success. 737 students in the Class of 2010 are participating in AccessUVa. Among these 737, students fall into three groups:

171 receiving full scholarship support under plan for students from families living within 200% of the federal poverty guideline. 170 will have loan obligations capped under plan for students of middle-income families. 396 are receiving a combination of loans, grants, and work-study packages to keep their debt below the loan cap.

Support for program is growing, as indeed awareness of failure of national and state financial aid systems is growing. The General Assembly is considering legislation to award grants to VCCS students when they enter 4-year colleges after two years. President Bush has proposed what may be an expansion, albeit modest, of the Pell program. The fund-raising potential of AccessUVa seems considerable.

One target for investment is expanding middle-income component, because Federal guidelines are too restrictive for families with multiple children in college, and state provides no support.

There is national interest in our financial aid Guide Program, and much imitation of it, including a proposal to make it a national program.

Our new agreement with the Virginia Community College System guarantees admission, based on course and grade requirements, to graduates of Virginia's community colleges. It reaffirms basic elements of plan in place since 1983 (Adams Plan), but provides clearer statements of guarantees.

The new agreement is already having measurable effect, as seen in the rising number of VCCS transfers to the University. In fall 2005, 483 applicants came from community colleges and 138 enrolled; in fall 2006, we had 545 applicants and 172 enrolled.

As part of management agreements, U.Va., Tech and W&M have committed to assisting distressed regions of the state with economic development. We are working with U.Va.-Wise, in partnership with the VA Coalfield Economic Development Authority, to assist the Coalfield Region of SW Virginia.

In November 2005, Governor Warner announced a Northrop Grumman initiative in Southwest and Central Virginia—a 10-year, $2 billion contract that will supply hundreds of high-paying tech jobs. The new undergraduate degree program in software engineering at Wise is the first new academic venture to support an undertaking of this kind. SEAS is supplying support (faculty and other) for the software engineering program at Wise, and will do so until Wise has its own resources.

The main goal of partnership with Wise is to provide support as Northrop Grumman, CGI-AMS, and other companies ramp up operations in SW Virginia. Categories for collaboration include: business support (workforce development, research collaboration, executive education); access to health care (RAM clinic, medical conference, field clinics); and, K-12 education (Curry-Wise collaboration on student achievement, teacher development).

In the new financial environment created by loss of state funds, our dependence on endowment grows greater each month. As of June 30, 2006, the market value of the consolidated endowment, including funds held by the Rector and Visitors, and endowment funds managed by UVIMCO for the related foundations, was $3.9 billion.

The return on the UVMICO-managed portfolio for the previous calendar year (2006) was 15.6%. [Return for FY 06 was 14.6%; FY 05 was 14.3%; FY 04 was 12.7%]. Returns on the R&V endowment have averaged more than 14% per year for the last decade. The University's endowment (including related foundations' assets) is 20th among all US endowments for all kinds of charitable institutions.

For the six-month period beginning at the start of the ‘06-07 fiscal year and ending on Dec. 31, 2006, private giving of all kinds totaled some $180.9 million. Of this $180.9 million, $92.7 million came to the University, and $88.2 million came to the University's related foundations. The $92.7 million in gifts to the U breaks down this way: gifts in kind: $6.4M; gifts for endowment: $6.5M; gifts for capital projects: $52.1M; private grants: $9.6M; other gifts: $18.1M

A summary of fund sources for the 2006-07 budget shows the variety of sources that we rely on for operations:

  • Tuition & Fees – $305,204,107 (15.5%)
  • State Appropriations – $166,948,287 (8.5%)--%age declines as year progresses
  • Patient Revenues – $865,987,575 (44.1%)
  • Sponsored Programs – $277,540,847 (14.1%)
  • Auxiliary Enterprises – $147,820,003 (7.5%)
  • Gifts & Endowment Income – $153,449,488 (7.8%)
  • Sales & Other – $24,563,629 (1.2%)
  • Divestment from Balances – $24,730,985 (1.3%)

The popular indicators of the University's standing are familiar to most of us. In the 2007 rankings, US News & World Report placed us 2nd among publics and 24th overall (tying with Michigan). We ranked second among publics in the best-value category, and top among all in the efficiency measures—not necessarily where one wants to be.

The University leads all public 4-year research institutions (approximately the 100 top publics) in 6-year graduation rates for the entering class of 1999 in the following categories: all students; African-American students; Hispanic-American students; Asian-American students; and, White students.

We have led our public peers in graduation rates for years. Statistics that include information on minority students have been published only recently. There is no significant difference among groups. This is the 13th consecutive year in which we have the highest graduation rate for African-American students among major public institutions.

This year's fact book provides a listing of faculty achievements. I will mention a few:

Malcolm Bell, professor of art history, was honored with a conference at the American Academy in Rome. Conference focused on the ethics of the antiquities trade and excavations at Morgantina.

Anita Jones, the Lawrence R. Quarles Professor of Engineering and Applied Science, was awarded the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers' most prestigious honor, the 2007 IEEE Founders Medal.

Robert F. Bruner, the Charles C. Abbott Professor of Business Administration and dean of the Darden School of Business, won an ECCH 2006 European Case Award for his case study of the Boeing 777 aircraft.

Jeanette Lancaster, the Sadie Heath Cabaniss Professor of Nursing and dean of the School of Nursing, was elected president of the American Association of Colleges of Nursing.

Richard Bonnie, the John S. Battle Professor of Law, is leading a statewide commission to recommend extensive changes to Virginia's mental health laws.

Last week, Governor Kaine named George Hornberger, Ernest H. Ern Professor of Environmental Sciences, as one of Virginia's Outstanding Scientists of 2007.

A full list of student honors appears in the fact book, so I will mention only a few.

E. Ross Baird, a Truman and Jefferson Scholarship recipient, was named a 2007 Marshall Scholar. He will attend Oxford to study comparative politics this fall.

Bridget Belkacemi, a graduate student in the landscape architecture program, won an award from the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) for her project, "Bayou as Infrastructure," a video narrative and interactive model of New Orleans.

Katherine Shirey (Curry '08) won a 2006 Knowles Science Teaching Foundation Fellowship for her presentation on the concept of harmonic motion and sine waves. Ms. Shirey has undergraduate degrees from the U in art and in physics.

A student team from the McIntire School of Commerce won the National Student Advertising Competition. Advised by Jack Lindgren, the Consumer Bankers Association Professor, the team included Jennie Averbook; Zoe Chen; Erin Fromherz; Karen Land; and Cathy Sposato.

Medical School student Ann Vaughters won the 2006 Patricia J. Numann Medical Student Leadership Award from the Association of Women Surgeons.

Five engineering students won Center for Global Health scholarships. Christine Devlin, Daniel Walters, Maureen Mulcare, and Harrison Wheaton, traveled to South Africa to work on purification of drinking water. Eliah Shamir traveled to Thailand to work with women and girls on issues related to sex trafficking and HIV/AIDS.

William Harvey continues to lead our efforts to foster diversity at the University. In November, his office held first annual Symposium on Race & Society, which addressed the racial implications of New Orleans disaster. Some 250 persons participated in the symposium. Proceedings will be published in Journal of Race & Policy in spring 2007. We are planning now for the 2007 symposium, which will examine how race relations and discrimination might affect disparities in health care.

Gertrude Fraser and Mr. Harvey are leading effort to improve our recruitment and retention of women and faculty from under-represented groups. Most recent data on demographics from across the nation show peer comparisons for 2003 and 2005. Among 61 AAU schools, U moved from 58th to 48th for women; from 21st to 12th for African-American; and from 60th to 59th for Asian-American faculty. We saw a decline from 58th to 59th for Hispanic.

Every ten years, the U must reaffirm its accreditation with Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. Accreditation is now underway with SACS. The Provost oversees all of the work. The timeline as follows:

September ‘06: Compliance report sent to SACS for review. Thank Earl Dudley, law school professor, for chairing Compliance Committee.

February ‘07: Quality Enhancement Plan due to SACS.QEP focuses on faculty-student engagement. Our recent All-U Retreat will contribute to QEP.

March 20-22: SACS on-site committee will visit. Robert Witt, President of Alabama University, will chair on-site committee.

December ‘07: Commission will vote on re-accreditation.

The following accreditations of schools and programs have occurred recently or are under way now.

The Liaison Committee on Medical Education is in final stages of re-accreditation of School of Medicine. Will be completed by the end of February. The Council on Education for Public Health approved application for accreditation for the new Masters of Public Health program. The Planning Accreditation Board of the Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning has re-accredited the Urban and Environmental Planning program in the School of Architecture. The American Speech, Language, and Hearing Association has re-accredited the Communication Disorders program in the Curry School. The Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs has re-accredited the Counselor Education and Supervision program at Curry. The American Psychological Association has re-accredited the Ph.D. program in clinical psychology.

Student safety remains a concern. We saw a number of alarming incidents during fall: a student murdered on Blue Ridge Parkway while there studying; a student shot while sitting on porch; other robberies and attacks.

One point of concern this semester: there were two sexual attacks on female students on January 29. Both victims were walking alone late at night, and there were similar modes of approach in both cases. An investigation is under way.

Generally, we see two kinds of incidents: random acts of violence; and crimes of opportunity when students don't use good judgment, or are impaired by alcohol.

Our online reporting process was implemented last spring. During fall 2006 semester, we had 19 reports of 19 unique incidents. This compares with 45 reports of 34 unique incidents (with 11 duplicate reports) in the spring 2006 semester. Reports this fall included reports of graffiti, derogatory comments made by students about other students, and allegations of discriminatory comments or actions. When a report comes in, dean-on-call responds promptly (within 24 hours) to person filing the complaint. The University Police Department also evaluates the complaint to determine the appropriate response.

Targets of abuse vary from one year to another, possibly in response to national or local issues. Recall that the last two years we saw considerable abuse of African American students. This year, the Bias Incident Reporting discloses that while the number of incidents is down the targets have changed: most incidents this year have had as their targets students of Asian-Pacific backgrounds or origins (a development reported previously at other tier I research universities, but not here) and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender persons.

One special note about this targeting: A student group has written to express concern about the environment for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender persons here and about University benefits for domestic partners. Addressing these issues may well be more rather than less complex than in prior years owing to the strong margins by which definition-of-marriage statutes and constitutional amendments have passed in several states, including Virginia.

Virginia public entities have never had the capacity to provide spousal equivalent benefits, although the non-discrimination policy that we published in 1991 seems to have endured, and the reported incidents have not involved violations of that policy so far as we can tell. Some states have more permissive laws, although the recent trend in one state (Michigan) appears to be going the other way. After initially asserting that it would not comply with the anti-affirmative action referendum passed in that state last fall, University of Michigan has recently announced that it will comply while seeking alternatives.

Private entities (including Virginia's largest private employers, but also the majority of non-sectarian private colleges and universities) provide the benefits that are prohibited here and in most other states. The effect: publics are at a competitive disadvantage in hiring. I can't predict outcomes, but this issue is a classic instance of the importance of citizen communication directly with elected officials.

This summer, Ed Ayers will become president of the University of Richmond, and Gene Block will become chancellor of UCLA. Both have been extraordinary and selfless leaders who will leave durable legacies.

As we began the Dean search, I ought advice from College groups (over 82 people) on issues the next dean will have to address. They responded with ideas that I shared with the search committee. James F. Childress, the John Allen Hollingsworth Professor of Ethics in the Department of Religious Studies, is committee chair. The twenty committee members will include representatives from College faculty and students, the Board, and the College Foundation. The committee had two meetings in late January. External consultants also providing search services. The search process (application reviews, interviews) will last all semester, and will be completed in May or June.

In regard to the Provost search, the initial plan was to fill the provost position after completing search for College dean. The Rector and members of the Board convinced me that we must fill the provost position as soon as possible — by mid-semester, if possible.

Several factors demand that we move quickly to fill this position. We need overlap between the current and the new provosts. We must ensure continuity and not lose momentum in our capital campaign. We must sustain work under way for academic planning, and the current semester and upcoming summer are the critical time for completing this work and moving forward with funding and implementation. We would like new provost to be involved in A&S dean selection.

A Board of Visitors' Search Oversight Committee (and their successors) will lead us through the provost search and also through next 5-6 year transition period that will see the retirement of Leonard Sandridge and curtailment of my own current duties.

We appreciate hard work done by Gene Block and Board members Dubby Wynne and Glynn Key on an initial draft of a 10-year academic plan. The next step is the engagement of faculty, alumni, and students in the final phase of this work. To sustain planning, I will form the third Commission on the Future of the University. The commission will be composed of deans, members of the Faculty Senate Executive Committee, and faculty, including those with expertise in science and fine arts, as well as students and alumni. Scientists Erich Bloch and Frank Press are consulting with us on sciences. We would be hard to find better-qualified consultants.

The first commission in the 60s helped guide the University's desegregation and co-education. Some assumed that arrival of women and persons of color would somehow threaten survival of the University. Instead, it strengthened it. The second commission in the 90s was a response to the state's request to cut back. It turned into an effort to set the University's course for the next decade, and resulted in the case statement for our last campaign.

This planning mechanism has a long and honorable history. It engages academics as thought leaders on matters within their areas of interest and competence and supports collegial consultation while also putting the provost into the appropriate leadership position. It generates both buy-in internally and support from the external consultants who provide guidance in the process as well as information about comparable initiatives in other universities. In the current situation, the provost's upcoming departure forces us to identify other leaders, and the ongoing conversion from our prior operating relationship with the state to the new one enacted under restructuring in 2005 and 2006 make it critical that Leonard Sandridge play a central role in determining the resource implications of all aspects of these plans.

Accordingly, I have asked Tim Garson and Leonard Sandridge to serve as co-chairs, and Bob Sweeney, who was a leader in VA2020 project, will advise all of the working committees involved in this project on non-state resources and means to obtain them. Internal constituent support for this approach is formidable. The deans, the Faculty Senate's Executive Council, and the Faculty Senate's Committee on Planning and Development have all agreed to take responsibility for components of this process. Ten-year plans are by their nature long range (i.e., aspirational) rather than strategic (i.e., constrained by known or reasonably predictable resources and time lines). In the first phase of this process, each dean will produce for her or his school, with faculty, student, and alumni involvement, brief (i.e., three-page) outline plans of both kinds so that the planners looking at the entire University will have the benefit of succinct statements of the schools' known intentions and plans. These schools plans will go back to the deans for reconsideration at the conclusion of the University process, and when accepted they will become a discreet appendix to the general plan.

We must complete the planning by early fall to avoid losing momentum.

In regard to athletics, I offer a few examples and refer you to the fact book for a full accounting. During 2005–06, U teams or individuals representing 19 sports participated in postseason competition. Some 221 student-athletes named to 2005–06 ACC Honor Roll. (Recognizes those who participate in a varsity-level sport and earn a GPA of 3.0 or better.) The University ranked 26th in the final 2005–06 Directors' Cup standings. The University has ranked in the Top 30 in these standings in all 13 years since the program began. Virginia teams won a total of five ACC championships during 2005–06, for a total of 20 ACC championships in the last four years (the most in the ACC). The men's lacrosse team finished the 2006 season with a 17-0 record and won both the ACC and NCAA Championships.

As we assess the University's condition and its plans for the future, we face a question: What is the role of an American public university in a global century? We must prepare our students to be global citizens in a global economy. This reality guides academic planning, our building projects, and our capital campaign.

In 2005–06, the University sponsored study-abroad programs in Morocco, South Africa, China, Japan, Tibet, Jordan, France, Ireland, Italy, Spain, the United Kingdom, Bahamas, Belize, Brazil, Costa Rica, Jamaica, and Peru. In 2005–06 (including Fall, J-term, Spring, and Summer), 1,875 students studied abroad or engaged in research abroad in 61 different countries.

In 2006–07, new study-abroad programs are being offered in Belize, Berlin, Ghana, Tanzania, Siena (Italy), Costa Rica, Tibet, El Salvador, and Germany. We are now ranked 10th in the country in terms of the number of our students who study abroad. We need more efficient and effective means to allocate resources abroad, and while Dr. Grossman has made progress regarding transparent acceptance here of credit hours and grade points earned in U.Va.-sponsored or recognized programs abroad, some students still must bring in our courses from abroad as through they were transfer courses. This is a major barrier to effective use of foreign study.

We introduced J-Term in 2005. In 2007, we had 36 courses (up from 30 in 2006), most offered here in Charlottesville, but including 8 study-abroad programs (in Spain, Nicaragua, Italy, Ireland, Belize, Berlin, Ghana, and Tanzania). Some 160 students participated in J-Term 2007 study-abroad — an increase of 65% from 2006 (97 participants). Some 455 students enrolled in non-study abroad courses in J-Term 2007 — an increase of 13% from 2006 (404 participants).

Our partnership with Institute for Shipboard Education began last summer. Voyage in summer 2006 visited seven countries, with 12 University students among 272 on board. The current semester's theme is Africa. Archbishop Desmond Tutu is Lecturer-in-Residence for the entire semester, which began earlier this week.

David Gies, Commonwealth Professor of Spanish, begins service as our academic dean for Semester at Sea in summer 2007. Seven faculty members will join him on voyage to Central and South America. William Soffa, Professor of Materials Science and Engineering, will lead the fall 2007 voyage.

Nearly half of undergrads engage in research. We want to increase this number by increasing opportunities. The Harrison Awards support undergrad research projects. Over 80 students submitted projects for this spring. The Awards will support 50 projects in 2006–07 (up from 47 projects in 2005–06). The Raven Society has a smaller, similar program that awards as many as 10 scholarships for summer research.

The College launched the College Science Scholars Program to attract more first-year students to sciences. Now in its 4th year, program has 70+ students enrolled. Another, similar program is being designed to engage second-year students who have an interest in science. This program will begin in 2007–08.

In fall 2006, the University began offering classes to students in the New College Institute, based in Martinsville, Virginia. In fall 2007, we will launch a new, 5-year master's degree program in public policy for students who are interested in careers in government and the non-profit sector. Students will apply in their third year for this 5-year program. They will take courses toward MA in the 4th year of undergrad study and as graduate students in 5th year. Student will receives their BA/BS in year four and the MA in year five. David Breneman will head this program as he completes second term as Education School dean this spring. The search for a new Education School dean is in progress.

Also in fall 2007, the University will offer a new Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree. This program will allow nursing practitioners and clinical faculty to focus on advanced practice (rather than research)—this is part of national effort to alleviate shortage of nursing faculty members and graduates.

We are now developing an MS in Commerce, which will be a stand-alone fifth-year degree for humanities graduates.

A number of building projects are under way, and several more completed in the last year. A few examples:

John Paul Jones Arena – Opened last summer, the arena has already hosted major performances (James Taylor, Eric Clapton, Disney on Ice) Basketball teams took the court in November.

South Lawn Project – Broke ground last fall for Phase I. It will add over 100,000 square feet of academic space and be home to history, politics, and religious studies.

Fayerweather Hall: This is the new home for Art History. Work was completed last summer. Fayerweather Hall will house the Carl H. and Martha S. Lindner Center for Art History. $2.8M gift from the Lindners will provide endowment support.

Wilsdorf Hall – Dedicated on Nov. 10. Named for faculty members Doris and Heinz Wilsdorf, this building was financed largely by a gift from Greg Olson, former student. A suite of labs and connection between Wilsdorf Hall and chemistry lab was made possible with gift from the family of the late John Matthews, a U.Va. physicist who did post-doc work with Doris Wilsdorf.

Cocke Hall – Substantially completed and occupied. Classes in session in Cocke Hall.

Rouss Hall/Commerce School – Began construction March 05; should complete Feb. 08.

ART Building – Began construction in April 06; should be completed in March 08.

Carter-Harrison Research Building – Construction began last March; should be completed in December 08.

Other projects under construction, in design, or in preliminary planning phases (see the fact book for details): Hospital Expansion; Claude Moore Medical Education Building; Claude Moore Nursing Education Building; Emily Couric Clinical Cancer Center; Translational Research Center (MR7); Gateway to the Arts; Arts Grounds Parking Garage; Ruffin Hall (Studio Art Building); Bavaro Hall (Ed School Building); Campbell Hall additions; O-Hill Residence Hall; and the Varsity Hall renovation/

As of end of December, the official total for our current capital campaign was $1.12 billion, or roughly 37% of the goal with 37% of the campaign elapsed. Campaign progress as of 1-31 is estimated to be $1.13 billion. Future support is $75.4 million.

Donors show interest in transformation, in programmatic improvements and creation of new programs and schools. We are now working with academic units on endowment proposals. This campaign is about several things: about having the determination and discipline to be "best in class;" about building new buildings; about hiring and retaining top faculty; and creating endowments to support excellence. It's also about concepts peculiar to this place: about the University's unique origins and its obligation to sustain human freedom by creating knowledge.

This is an interesting coincidence: on this exact date, 181 years ago (Feb. 7, 1826), Thomas Jefferson wrote a letter to Joseph Carrington Cabell, his friend and co-conspirator in the creation of the University. In his letter, Jefferson described their effort to build the U as "the greatest of all services, that of regenerating the public education, and placing our rising generation on the level of our sister states …"

He went on to describe, in his words, "the inestimable effect we shall have produced in the elevation of our county, by what we have done …"

Some 181 years later, our purposes here are remarkably unchanged. We do our part of the work that Jefferson started: We build human minds to protect human freedom. What has changed is the world that we are preparing our students to enter. Our challenge, and our obligation, is to be as bold and revolutionary in our thinking and actions today as TJ was in his time.

Thank you.