Task Force for Financial Sustainability
Established by Chancellor Gilliam in February 2023, the UNC Greensboro Task Force for Financial Sustainability was charged to identify near- and long-term fiscal sustainability strategies for the institution. A major initiative in the effort to reinvent and innovate the University, the Task Force was comprised of experienced staff and faculty from across campus. Together, the Task Force examined a variety of administrative and operational opportunities to make UNCG more efficient and cost-effective.
A MESSAGE FROM THE CHANCELLOR
REGARDING THE REPORT FROM THE TASK FORCE ON FINANCIAL SUSTAINABILITY
Thank you to the Task Force on Financial Sustainability. In a short period of time the group worked diligently to produce an excellent report. They were composed of a wide range of faculty and staff demonstrating the value of working across campus silos.
There are several noteworthy points to be made that provide context to readers of the report. Do note that this effort is part of a larger initiative around Reinvention and Innovation (including the efforts on academic portfolio review) to ensure the campus is on firm fiscal and academic ground for the next ten or so years. Given the highly dynamic and watershed environment that characterizes higher education (the report does a nice job of capturing these headwinds), it is imperative that we make the necessary changes now. It is our ethical responsibility to do so. We cannot bury our heads in the sand and hope that things go back to the way they used to be. We must identify and enact best practices that are in line with our mission and values.
It is also noteworthy to keep in mind that the Task Force is making recommendations. Some we will enact, some we won’t. Some we can act on quickly, others will take more time. Do not become fixated on any one element. As mentioned previously, this is but one part of a larger endeavor to innovate and reinvent. The ideas that the Task Force put forward reflect a consensus among this particular independent, inter-university group. Many of the recommendations merit discussion and consideration from my senior team. At this point in time, no decisions have been made. We will keep you informed about specific decisions as we move forward.
One of the hallmarks of this process is our reliance on data. As a result of the rpk Group engagement and the expertise from the team in the Office of Institutional Research and Enterprise Data Management we now have the tools to analyze a host of variables (e.g., total expenses, student success and retention, faculty and staff FTE, student credit hour production, and enrollment) by colleges, schools, departments, and programs. The Office of Research and Engagement has also provided data on research expenditures, awards and submissions, faculty buyouts, and research support for undergraduate and graduate students. These data are now publicly available on the Reinvention & Innovation website. Such data has never been more publicly available to our campus. I encourage you to take a look – the work is revealing and powerful.
To continue to realize our vision and mission, a framework that outlines our future recognizes that we must: grow our highest quality programs, support our unique student body, sustain the infrastructure for excellent research, and continue our impactful community-engaged work. Taking proactive steps now to align staffing and programming with these elements will allow UNCG to thrive in the future.
The path to success clearly relies on the efforts of all of us. After all, we have a shared fate. This will work best if we adopt a One UNCG perspective. We cannot afford to resist change. Institutions that reify old patterns and behaviors will surely fail. Leaning into our future together is what we need to do.
In closing, let me say this: we have a great University. There are many wonderful things happening on our campus. This is the result of the hard work and dedication of people like yourselves who are committed to our important mission. I have great hopes for our future. I believe in my heart that we will continue to do spectacular things together. Maybe not in the same way as in the past. Maybe not the exact same things we have been doing. But, we will succeed.
– Franklin D. Gilliam, Jr., Chancellor