Funding changes impact colleges

This year, SDSU transitioned from a centralized budget model to a decentralized budget.

Last year, campus ran a side- by-side model or parallel model, which showed how a decentralized budget would look like when it was implemented on campus.

“The money enters at the point where students pay their tuition and their fees and then those colleges have to pay the service centers for services we provide to them,” said Laurie Nichols, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs

In a centralized budget model, the funds would come from administrators and then be distributed to the different colleges.

Nichols said with a centralized budget “the money comes in at the college level.”

A committee was created to help campus transition from a centralized budget to a decentralized budget. Joseph Santos, an economics professors, chaired the faculty budget planning committee.

“We were tasked with specifying a decentralized budget model,” Santos said.

The committee was tasked with finding a model that would meet the campus’ needs.

In addition to the Budget Planning Committee, there was also a University Budget Oversight Committee, which makes recommendations on how to allocate the funds. Nichols and Wesley Tschetter, Vice President for Finance and Business, were co-chairs for UBOC.

There are multiple funds available are off-the-top and the Strategic Reinvestment Fund.

“Those [off-the-top] would be services that would be provided to the university off the top before we move into the decentralized budget,” Nichols said.

Nichols said off-the-top funds can be utilized by the President, UBOC can look at requests andmakerecommendationsto the president.

Strategic reinvestment funds are “a special pool of $1 million” that deans can request money in order to make changes to their college.

“They [the needs outline in the strategic reinvestment funds] were critical needs we knew existed and we wanted to address them before we headed full force into decentralized budget,” Nichols said. “They were run through UBOC and

they were funded off-the-top.” The needs in the strategic reinvestment fund were suggested by UBOC, the president and from the strategic reinvestment fund. The proposals included positions added for a variety of departments and other areas of campus.

“He [the president] had liberty

to adjust [the decentralized budget plan] as he saw fit. He accepted the recommendations and then went forward,” Santos said.

Before the decentralized budget model went into effect it had to be approved by the President Chicoine and then after it was approved it then it was approved to be implemented on campus.

“I hope what students will see is that we pay a lot more attention to how we do business with students everyday including our curriculum and the quality of the courses and the programs we’re offering,” Nichols said.

Students will be impacted by this change because when they buy credits the money goes directly to the colleges.

Santos said that students won’t see a big change because they are still buying credits. The colleges are who is going to see the biggest change.

The number of credit hours then directly impacts the colleges. If the college is down in credit hours or goes up in credit hours, the college will directly impacted.

“I think this budget makes us take a more serious look at what we’re doing for students. Now we’re really incentivized to pay attention to students,” Nichols said.