A MESSAGE TO STUDENTS: 'STAY POSITIVE'

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Posted on July 1, 2011

Portrait of President Angelo Armenti, Jr.To Cal U students and their families:

Last night Gov. Tom Corbett signed a state budget that significantly reduces the appropriation for Pennsylvania’s 14 state-owned universities, including Cal U.

The Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE) will receive $412,751,000 in state funds for the 2011-2012 fiscal year, 18% less than the 2010-2011 appropriation.

The budget figure reflects a loss of $38 million in federal stimulus funds and more than $52 million in state support for PASSHE. The $90 million reduction in state and federal funding will mean a loss of about $802 in funding per full-time student, leaving the State System with a $33 million budget deficit.

Here at Cal U, state support will be reduced by about $6 million, compared to the 2010-2011 appropriation.

Also today, the PASSHE Board of Governors approved a $436 tuition increase for the 2011-2012 academic year.

Throughout the budget process, PASSHE Chancellor John Cavanaugh repeatedly stated that students and their families would not be asked to bear the entire burden of the reduction in state funding. The Board’s tuition decision reflects that commitment.

The annual tuition rate for full-time, resident undergraduate students will be $6,240 — still among the lowest rates for all four-year colleges and universities in Pennsylvania, and well below the national average among all public institutions.

This reduction in public support presents a serious challenge for the University and our entire campus community — and especially for our students, who are facing higher costs.

Nevertheless, it is a challenge Cal U has been preparing to face.

In recent years, as the decline in state support for public higher education has become increasingly apparent, Cal U has worked hard to improve productivity and operate in a cost-effective manner. We will continue those efforts and build on them in the coming year.

At the same time, we will continue:

  • To be both innovative and entrepreneurial as we search out new sources of alternative revenue.
  • To seek private donations to support student scholarships, our University’s greatest need.
  • To work cooperatively with students and their families, helping to find the assistance they need to meet their educational goals. 

Despite the undeniable challenges that lie ahead, I have great confidence in the future of our University. As we begin the difficult process of identifying specific areas where we can reduce our budget to bring it into balance, I can assure you that Cal U remains committed to its mission of offering a high-quality education at the lowest possible cost to our students.

As we look ahead to the coming academic year, I ask you to stay positive. In its nearly 160-year history, Cal U has managed not only to survive but to thrive, even in difficult circumstances. Our students are diligent in their pursuit of success, our faculty is committed and creative, and our institution is growing. If we work together toward common goals, Cal U will continue to prosper.

Let me repeat the pledge I made last spring, when the budget plan first was announced: We will do everything in our power to preserve Cal U as a beacon of hope and a place of opportunity for every student who is willing to work hard to improve his or her life by means of a high-quality education.

Sincerely yours,

President Angelo Armenti, Jr. Signature.

 

 


Angelo Armenti, Jr.

President, California University of Pennsylvania

 

Read a news release from the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education

Read the President’s previous message, from March 9, 2011.