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Author Topic: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020  (Read 2740 times)

The Lens

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MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« on: June 23, 2020, 03:46:55 PM »
I had heard that MU's freshman class was an issue well before COVID.  This could be a very rough year for the University.

https://biztimes.com/marquette-unveils-cost-cutting-plan-to-address-budget-shortfall/
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TinyTimsLittleBrother

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #1 on: June 23, 2020, 04:24:38 PM »
I said this two months ago.

https://www.muscoop.com/index.php?topic=60338.msg1228798#msg1228798

To simplify things, tuition revenue is determined by the number of students multiplied by what an average student pays.  The problems at MU aren't just enrollment for this year.  Last year's class was disappointing not only number wise, but they had to discount tuition just to get enough bodies through the door so it wasn't a complete disaster.  So on top of this class who isn't paying enough as a whole, and for whom you had to reimburse half a semester's room and board costs, you are bringing in an smaller freshman class.  So those are two bad revenue years that the University will be stuck with for the two years after this one.

Last fall I mentioned that the Board really needs to start asking questions of President Lovell.  Betting on increased freshmen classes, only to have them come in smaller, is only part of the problem.  Fundraising isn't going well.  Too many announced projects that are falling short.

On top of that, the college bureaucracy has ballooned with numerous people with overlapping responsibilites and unclear missions.  I mean look at this mess.  There are 16 people with "Vice President" in their title.

https://www.marquette.edu/leadership/documents/ulc-org-chart.pdf

I want to be optimistic, but it is hard to be.

Billy Hoyle

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #2 on: June 23, 2020, 04:26:06 PM »
I had heard that MU's freshman class was an issue well before COVID.  This could be a very rough year for the University.

https://biztimes.com/marquette-unveils-cost-cutting-plan-to-address-budget-shortfall/

It is going to be a rough year for many universities. I just read that Michigan State is looking at a $300 million budget deficit for the upcoming year.

I remember MU having budget issues when I was a student in the '90s and the alma mater emerged alright.
« Last Edit: June 23, 2020, 05:27:16 PM by Billy Hoyle »
What, you still throwing up bricks? What is this, a Masons convention? Clank, clank! I need, like, a welding torch to play in this league! I got an idea, let's just stop right now and gather up all these bricks and let's build a shelter for the homeless so maybe your mother will have a place to stay

MUeng

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #3 on: June 23, 2020, 09:53:35 PM »
All things considered $15 mil isn't too bad.  Out here the University of Denver is short $45 mil, best case scenario we were told.  With respect to Michigan State and other similar schools, I suspect much of that shortfall is due to canceled sports and massive losses in revenue?

mu_hilltopper

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #4 on: June 23, 2020, 09:59:40 PM »
Last year's class was disappointing not only number wise, but they had to discount tuition just to get enough bodies through the door so it wasn't a complete disaster.

Anyone know how that compares to other similar schools?  Is DePaul, SLU, Dayton, Creighton, Xavier, etc .. having the same enrollment issues? 

I'd guess most privates are in the same boat.  It's not like MU is specifically a damaged brand -- beyond the basketball post-season issues, naturally.

The Lens

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #5 on: June 23, 2020, 11:22:11 PM »
All things considered $15 mil isn't too bad.  Out here the University of Denver is short $45 mil, best case scenario we were told.  With respect to Michigan State and other similar schools, I suspect much of that shortfall is due to canceled sports and massive losses in revenue?

What’s MU’s budget?  What is Denver’s?
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Billy Hoyle

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #6 on: June 23, 2020, 11:46:21 PM »
All things considered $15 mil isn't too bad.  Out here the University of Denver is short $45 mil, best case scenario we were told.  With respect to Michigan State and other similar schools, I suspect much of that shortfall is due to canceled sports and massive losses in revenue?

My old assistant now works for DU and was fortunate to avoid any cuts or layoffs.

MSU’s shortfall is the university, not the athletic department.
What, you still throwing up bricks? What is this, a Masons convention? Clank, clank! I need, like, a welding torch to play in this league! I got an idea, let's just stop right now and gather up all these bricks and let's build a shelter for the homeless so maybe your mother will have a place to stay

Fluffy Blue Monster

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #7 on: June 24, 2020, 07:36:51 AM »
All things considered $15 mil isn't too bad.  Out here the University of Denver is short $45 mil, best case scenario we were told. 


You're misunderstanding.  $15 million is Marquette's shortfall for fiscal year '20.  Denver's is its projections for fiscal year '21.  I have no idea what Marquette's revenue shortfall is for '21 but my guess is that it is significantly larger than $15 million.
« Last Edit: June 24, 2020, 07:38:30 AM by Fluffy Blue Monster »
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Fluffy Blue Monster

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #8 on: June 24, 2020, 07:38:11 AM »
My old assistant now works for DU and was fortunate to avoid any cuts or layoffs.

MSU’s shortfall is the university, not the athletic department.


I don't know if this is the case in Michigan, but in Wisconsin the public universities were asked to give back a portion of their state allocation.  So not only did they have to reimburse room and board for half a semester, they had to give back money to the state too.
“True patriotism hates injustice in its own land more than anywhere else.”  -Clarence Darrow

TinyTimsLittleBrother

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #9 on: June 24, 2020, 07:59:01 AM »
You're misunderstanding.  $15 million is Marquette's shortfall for fiscal year '20.  Denver's is its projections for fiscal year '21.  I have no idea what Marquette's revenue shortfall is for '21 but my guess is that it is significantly larger than $15 million.

It is significantly larger than $15 million.  My understanding is that are still working out the details of a revised budget for next year because ever changing plans for next year have financial impacts. 

MUfan12

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #10 on: June 24, 2020, 08:31:18 AM »

Last fall I mentioned that the Board really needs to start asking questions of President Lovell.  Betting on increased freshmen classes, only to have them come in smaller, is only part of the problem.  Fundraising isn't going well.  Too many announced projects that are falling short.


This right here.

The Lens

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #11 on: June 24, 2020, 08:46:29 AM »
This right here.

Who is in his corner? Every rumbling I hear is negative.
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TinyTimsLittleBrother

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #12 on: June 24, 2020, 09:02:58 AM »
Who is in his corner? Every rumbling I hear is negative.


I have interacted with him a couple of times.  He is genuinely a nice man with deep faith who cares a great deal for the University.  There isn't anyone who doesn't want the guy to succeed.  But he is prone to big ideas and hasn't been held back when he should have been.  The performance center, the business school, investing money into the operating budget and paying it off with increased enrollment.  And he has made some questionable hires too.  He's hired three advancement vice presidents.  The second one was a terrible fit from the beginning and only lasted a year.  Hopefully the guy there now works out.  But the whole thing is just not working.

LloydsLegs

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #13 on: June 24, 2020, 09:45:54 AM »
$220 million projected deficit for University of Chicago this year (not including hospital, which will be hit hard)

Northwestern $90 million

Galway Eagle

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #14 on: June 24, 2020, 09:49:23 AM »
$220 million projected deficit for University of Chicago this year (not including hospital, which will be hit hard)

Northwestern $90 million

So U of C doesn't get sports rev I'm assuming so what's the massive shortfall from? Do they really get that much in fundraising?

mu_hilltopper

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #15 on: June 24, 2020, 10:40:41 AM »
U of Chicago, Northwestern .. $300m loss.    Many other industries report massive revenue hits.

I'm always curious when this happens to ask .. what did society really lose there?   Are the students of those two schools $300m less educated?  What will society do with the $300m not spent there?

Et cetera.

Fluffy Blue Monster

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #16 on: June 24, 2020, 10:44:21 AM »
That's not really how the economy works.  Most of these losses are due to students not being able to afford to come to school because they, or their parents, have lost income.  There isn't simply $300 million floating around in the economy to be spent elsewhere.
“True patriotism hates injustice in its own land more than anywhere else.”  -Clarence Darrow

cheebs09

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #17 on: June 24, 2020, 10:49:55 AM »
U of Chicago, Northwestern .. $300m loss.    Many other industries report massive revenue hits.

I'm always curious when this happens to ask .. what did society really lose there?   Are the students of those two schools $300m less educated?  What will society do with the $300m not spent there?

Et cetera.

Also, I’m kind of curious on the creative accounting. It’s been awhile since my accounting classes, but is there some value if you are already taking a loss to maximize that?

That’s why I chuckle at this talk of the Brewers losing money. My tax professor said they try to run sports teams at a loss so for personal taxes, they get a ton of savings.

Fluffy Blue Monster

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #18 on: June 24, 2020, 10:53:24 AM »
I think these budget losses are actually revenue dereases.  I doubt the University of Chicago is going to post a $200 million loss.  Also, schools will likely be tapping their endowment for larger distributions as well.
“True patriotism hates injustice in its own land more than anywhere else.”  -Clarence Darrow

MUeng

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #19 on: June 24, 2020, 08:21:12 PM »

You're misunderstanding.  $15 million is Marquette's shortfall for fiscal year '20.  Denver's is its projections for fiscal year '21.  I have no idea what Marquette's revenue shortfall is for '21 but my guess is that it is significantly larger than $15 million.
gotcha.  Yea I did not see DU's shortfall for wrapping up '20, just projection for 20-21.  Staggering no doubt, as $45 mil best case is significant.  I'm sure it will be a balanced approached of raising tuition in the short-term, cutting new projects and construction, tapping endowment.  tough times for universities.  My niece had to turn down CSU and go with Lacrosse because the economics of going mostly online out of state just didn't make sense to her parents budget.  understandable.

vogue65

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #20 on: June 24, 2020, 09:36:07 PM »
NO PROBLEM, CUT OVERHEAD.

Rule of thumb, when an organization has 25% unutilized capacity it goes bankrupt.

The country has bigger problems than colleges budget shortfalls.

Hards_Alumni

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #21 on: June 25, 2020, 06:52:36 AM »
NO PROBLEM, CUT OVERHEAD.

Rule of thumb, when an organization has 25% unutilized capacity it goes bankrupt.

The country has bigger problems than colleges budget shortfalls.

You should probably divorce "Rule of Thumb" from your vocabulary.

Fluffy Blue Monster

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #22 on: June 25, 2020, 08:02:28 AM »
gotcha.  Yea I did not see DU's shortfall for wrapping up '20, just projection for 20-21.  Staggering no doubt, as $45 mil best case is significant.  I'm sure it will be a balanced approached of raising tuition in the short-term, cutting new projects and construction, tapping endowment.  tough times for universities.  My niece had to turn down CSU and go with Lacrosse because the economics of going mostly online out of state just didn't make sense to her parents budget.  understandable.



The vast majority of schools are dealing with this primarily through cuts in personnel expenses.  Furloughs, temporary pay cuts, unfilled positions, etc.  It the largest expense a college or university has so it's the one that needs to be targetted first.
“True patriotism hates injustice in its own land more than anywhere else.”  -Clarence Darrow

vogue65

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #23 on: June 25, 2020, 10:03:31 AM »
Bankruptcy would probably be a good topic for a thread.

Having once  gone bankrupt myself,  having worked for three bankrupt companies, I'm somewhat an expert on the subject.  Nevertheless, I'm lost for words about the gargantuan shortfalls in higher education. 

Bankruptcy is one of the foundations of our capitalist system. 
It is an uncomfortable subject like death.
Bankruptcy is not a fad, it is a reality.



Fluffy Blue Monster

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #24 on: June 25, 2020, 10:15:02 AM »
Colleges and universities usually just close.  I don't know if the corporation officially goes into bankruptcy as part of that process.
“True patriotism hates injustice in its own land more than anywhere else.”  -Clarence Darrow

vogue65

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #25 on: June 25, 2020, 03:20:28 PM »
Colleges and universities usually just close.  I don't know if the corporation officially goes into bankruptcy as part of that process.

Agreed, they merge, then wither away.  Just look at Catholic high schools and retreat houses.  The B.O.T. has some very hard decisions coming up.   

What created not for profit universities like Marquette?  In my view, the G.I. Bill after WWII.   Yes it was founded in 1881, but the growth started after the depression and WWII.  So how does it end?  Covid and another depression? 

The $15 million shortfall may just be the handwriting on the wall. 

It is easier to play with the budget than to cut overhead. Time for core value, nice to have but not required, decisions.  Easier said than done, good luck B.O.T..

lawdog77

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #26 on: June 25, 2020, 03:21:48 PM »
You should probably divorce "Rule of Thumb" from your vocabulary.
I don't use the term, but..

https://www.baltimoresun.com/news/bs-xpm-1998-04-17-1998107056-story.html

Fluffy Blue Monster

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #27 on: June 25, 2020, 03:29:54 PM »
Marquette is different than some of those organizations.  If a Catholic high school or something similar closes, the assets revert to the founding order, and if the order dissolves or no longer exists, the Catholic church.  Marquette's do not.  It is actually an indepdent University who affiliates with the Catholic Church.  The founding order also holds no "reserve powers."  It is completely self-governing.  And according to its Articles of Incorporation, if it is dissovled, the assets go to a 501(c)(3) charity that the BOT determines.

And Marquette is nowhere near closing, dissolving or the like.
“True patriotism hates injustice in its own land more than anywhere else.”  -Clarence Darrow

Hards_Alumni

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #28 on: June 25, 2020, 03:36:01 PM »
I don't use the term, but..

https://www.baltimoresun.com/news/bs-xpm-1998-04-17-1998107056-story.html

Interesting, learn something new everyday, I guess!  I'm still probably not going to use it though.

vogue65

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #29 on: June 25, 2020, 06:47:36 PM »
Marquette is different than some of those organizations.  If a Catholic high school or something similar closes, the assets revert to the founding order, and if the order dissolves or no longer exists, the Catholic church.  Marquette's do not.  It is actually an indepdent University who affiliates with the Catholic Church.  The founding order also holds no "reserve powers."  It is completely self-governing.  And according to its Articles of Incorporation, if it is dissovled, the assets go to a 501(c)(3) charity that the BOT determines.

And Marquette is nowhere near closing, dissolving or the like.

I agree Marquette is not closing, only downsizing.
If we think Marquette has long term problems they are nothing compared to ND.
My catholic high school split from the archdiocese to protect assets from the "scandal", i understand.



vogue65

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #30 on: June 25, 2020, 06:57:51 PM »
I don't use the term, but..

https://www.baltimoresun.com/news/bs-xpm-1998-04-17-1998107056-story.html

Thanks, very interesting, but I will use it to mean that experience shows that a 25% unused capacity leads to serious financial problems, like bankruptcy.  As in, unallocated overhead.

BTW, love The George Washington University, great school.  I did 21 hours of graduate school there, no degree, but very worthwhile and highly respected education/institution. 


MU Fan in Connecticut

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #31 on: June 26, 2020, 08:21:49 AM »
Xavier apparently has record enrollment for this upcoming fall semester.  My daughter got an email this week offering tuition & dining compensation for volunteers in 2 dorms that are Freshman/Sophomore for the Sophomores to move off campus locations to make room for Freshman.  My daughter is not slated to be in either dorm, but is pursuing with her group of friends regardless for the incentives.

vogue65

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #32 on: June 26, 2020, 09:34:02 AM »


The vast majority of schools are dealing with this primarily through cuts in personnel expenses.  Furloughs, temporary pay cuts, unfilled positions, etc.  It the largest expense a college or university has so it's the one that needs to be targetted first.

First things first, stop gap, then the real cuts.

vogue65

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #33 on: June 26, 2020, 09:40:15 AM »
You should probably divorce "Rule of Thumb" from your vocabulary.

O.K., what should I say to be "politically" or etymologically correct?  Thank you.

Hards_Alumni

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #34 on: June 26, 2020, 09:47:33 AM »
O.K., what should I say to be "politically" or etymologically correct?  Thank you.

It's been covered.  My preposition was incorrect.  But since, you asked, I'd go with, "As a rule".  :P

Disco Hippie

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #35 on: June 26, 2020, 09:01:14 PM »
Xavier apparently has record enrollment for this upcoming fall semester.  My daughter got an email this week offering tuition & dining compensation for volunteers in 2 dorms that are Freshman/Sophomore for the Sophomores to move off campus locations to make room for Freshman.  My daughter is not slated to be in either dorm, but is pursuing with her group of friends regardless for the incentives.

Because their marketing in this region is far superior.  Wish I could say I was surprised but they put far more resources into this region than MU does. Marquette is still probably a slightly better brand name overall in the U.S. but X surpassed MU in popularity in the Northeast 15 years ago.   It's not because CinCin is marginally closer than MKE, the difference is not significant.  It's marketing plain and simple.  MU's endowment, while not impressive at $698M still dwarfs X's at $169M.  Inexcusable.  Found an interesting article that confirms MUFANinCT's claim below:

https://www.cincinnati.com/story/news/2020/04/26/xavier-university-pace-meet-enrollment-goals-despite-pandemic/3010696001/

Smart Strategy
« Last Edit: June 26, 2020, 09:06:19 PM by Disco Hippie »

Billy Hoyle

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #36 on: June 27, 2020, 12:39:54 AM »
Because their marketing in this region is far superior.  Wish I could say I was surprised but they put far more resources into this region than MU does. Marquette is still probably a slightly better brand name overall in the U.S. but X surpassed MU in popularity in the Northeast 15 years ago.   It's not because CinCin is marginally closer than MKE, the difference is not significant.  It's marketing plain and simple.  MU's endowment, while not impressive at $698M still dwarfs X's at $169M.  Inexcusable.  Found an interesting article that confirms MUFANinCT's claim below:

https://www.cincinnati.com/story/news/2020/04/26/xavier-university-pace-meet-enrollment-goals-despite-pandemic/3010696001/

Smart Strategy

X was in the A10 and was actively recruiting students in the NE side joining in 1995 and has a nicer campus. That said, MU should have a stronger presence. MU is a better school and has been for a long time. From personal experience, my dad wouldn’t let me apply to X as I had already applied to MU and MU was a harder school to be admitted to.
What, you still throwing up bricks? What is this, a Masons convention? Clank, clank! I need, like, a welding torch to play in this league! I got an idea, let's just stop right now and gather up all these bricks and let's build a shelter for the homeless so maybe your mother will have a place to stay

Fluffy Blue Monster

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #37 on: June 27, 2020, 06:28:13 AM »
Because their marketing in this region is far superior.  Wish I could say I was surprised but they put far more resources into this region than MU does. Marquette is still probably a slightly better brand name overall in the U.S. but X surpassed MU in popularity in the Northeast 15 years ago.   It's not because CinCin is marginally closer than MKE, the difference is not significant.  It's marketing plain and simple.  MU's endowment, while not impressive at $698M still dwarfs X's at $169M.  Inexcusable.  Found an interesting article that confirms MUFANinCT's claim below:

https://www.cincinnati.com/story/news/2020/04/26/xavier-university-pace-meet-enrollment-goals-despite-pandemic/3010696001/

Smart Strategy


It might be a sound strategy.  This paragraph shows that they had to pay a lot to get those students:

"That change was part of the motivation behind Xavier earmarking "hundreds of thousands" of additional dollars toward financial aid, Meis said. He declined to give an exact figure of the increase. The money was originally meant in part to attract students during the expanded recruitment period.

The increase in financial aid, though it would detract from tuition revenue, served as an investment, with the hope that it would allow the university to retain more students and thus more revenue in the future."

Any school can meet quantity targets if they discount enough.  But quantitty targets aren't the only metric.  How much those students pay is important as well.  Because you can't add students without adding costs.

And that comment that it's an investment doesn't make a lot of sense because those students are going to be paying less for four years.
“True patriotism hates injustice in its own land more than anywhere else.”  -Clarence Darrow

Marquette Gyros

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #38 on: June 27, 2020, 10:07:09 AM »

It might be a sound strategy.  This paragraph shows that they had to pay a lot to get those students:


We also had to pay a lot to get the students we got, and still didn’t meet our targets, yeah?

Fluffy Blue Monster

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #39 on: June 27, 2020, 12:55:42 PM »

We also had to pay a lot to get the students we got, and still didn’t meet our targets, yeah?


Yes.  I wasn't comparing the two strategies.  I was simply stating that simply meeting quantity goals may not be a sound strategy.
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Disco Hippie

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #40 on: June 27, 2020, 01:56:04 PM »
X was in the A10 and was actively recruiting students in the NE side joining in 1995 and has a nicer campus. That said, MU should have a stronger presence. MU is a better school and has been for a long time. From personal experience, my dad wouldn’t let me apply to X as I had already applied to MU and MU was a harder school to be admitted to.

Great point about the A-10 Billy.  I didn’t think of that but you’re right it probably has a lot to do with it.  Marquette’s urban location is not a draw to many either and I get that.  I was definitely an anomaly because my attitude at the time was if the campus had grass I didn’t wanna go there so I didn’t even bother applying to schools with traditional campuses, but fully acknowledge most 18-year-olds don’t feel that way.  Still, as an institution that claims it wants to be a “national university“ they shouldn’t be happy that 78% of all undergraduates hail from two states.  I’d like to see more students matriculate from everywhere not just the Northeast east but the NE is by far the most densely populated part of the country and they should be doing better than they are here.  At our local Jesuit high school here in southwestern CT, UW Madison is significantly more popular than MU.  Sad!
« Last Edit: June 27, 2020, 05:29:28 PM by Disco Hippie »

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #41 on: June 27, 2020, 02:24:46 PM »
"As a rule", in good times students shop amenities and sports, in bad times they shop price.

High needers shop price, the prevledged shop dormatories, sports and food.

It is hard to have it both ways.  The esoteric subjects and majors are at the well endowed instutions, the "practical" educations are for the rest of us.

TinyTimsLittleBrother

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #42 on: October 06, 2020, 01:30:45 PM »
https://marquettewire.org/4040207/projects-tribune/professors-disheartened-by-potential-layoffs/

How bad are Marquette's issues?

In 2018, they bragged about their largest first year class since they started keeping records in 1960.  2,162 students.  Two years later, they enrolled their smallest first year class in over 20 years: 1,647 students.  That is a decline of 23.8%.

You are going to read a lot about COVID and demographics being the reasons behind this.  But other schools aren't suffering through decreases of this size. And the big demographic changes aren't even set to hit until the mid 20s.

So a bunch of people are going to lose their jobs over this.  The University has no choice.  But are any of these people on the chopping block?  What a mess.

https://www.marquette.edu/leadership/documents/ulc-org-chart.pdf

Come on Trustees!  Start asking questions!

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #43 on: October 06, 2020, 02:42:34 PM »
https://marquettewire.org/4040207/projects-tribune/professors-disheartened-by-potential-layoffs/

How bad are Marquette's issues?

In 2018, they bragged about their largest first year class since they started keeping records in 1960.  2,162 students.  Two years later, they enrolled their smallest first year class in over 20 years: 1,647 students.  That is a decline of 23.8%.

You are going to read a lot about COVID and demographics being the reasons behind this.  But other schools aren't suffering through decreases of this size. And the big demographic changes aren't even set to hit until the mid 20s.

So a bunch of people are going to lose their jobs over this.  The University has no choice.  But are any of these people on the chopping block?  What a mess.

https://www.marquette.edu/leadership/documents/ulc-org-chart.pdf

Come on Trustees!  Start asking questions!
I don't know what you think that conversation will go like, but it would be something like this:

Trustees:  What happened here!?!?!

Rest of functional world:  Well, a global pandemic.

Trustee:  Oh yeah, that's right.

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #44 on: October 06, 2020, 03:20:13 PM »
I don't know what you think that conversation will go like, but it would be something like this:

Trustees:  What happened here!?!?!

Rest of functional world:  Well, a global pandemic.

Trustee:  Oh yeah, that's right.


I think Tiny's point is that Covid may be used as an excuse, but it's actually deeper than that.
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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #45 on: October 06, 2020, 07:12:43 PM »
Historically Marquette has made bad decisions when short term financial considerations were given more weighting over long term considerations . Examples a) discontinuing Football b) discontinuing Marquette Medical School and C) Not paying up for a bona fide successor to Al.

Marquette does well when it deserves a clear educational outcome, that is: a Big Ten Quality Education, for top 20 percent of their class students, combined with the close personal attention to student circumstances a medium size school can provide. That is why for years MU was labeled by US News as an A+ School for B Students. That structure is a winning combination for parents and kids.

MU has all the basics to succeed in the academic complex of the future. A tremendous health sciences complex that cranks out well trained graduates that are in high demand. Education churns out teachers.  Engineering Business School and Communications are all very consistent. The Law School and Dental School are both well respected. College of Arts and Sciences is necessary to have a University that feed students to Graduate and Professional Schools.

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #46 on: October 06, 2020, 09:11:54 PM »
I don’t doubt that the declining enrollment at Marquette is more than just Covid. That said, it would be interesting to see the two-year decreases at comparable universities, to gauge the magnitude of the problem.

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #47 on: October 06, 2020, 09:19:25 PM »
I don't know what you think that conversation will go like, but it would be something like this:

Trustees:  What happened here!?!?!

Rest of functional world:  Well, a global pandemic.

Trustee:  Oh yeah, that's right.

I'm not sure that would be an accurate excuse.

Some MU peer Universities changed tactics to remedy any shortfalls in enrollment. Several of those Universities either hit or exceeded targets despite COVID.

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #48 on: October 06, 2020, 09:20:13 PM »
I don’t doubt that the declining enrollment at Marquette is more than just Covid. That said, it would be interesting to see the two-year decreases at comparable universities, to gauge the magnitude of the problem.

Agreed. I’m not saying we don’t have a problem. I simply don’t know. Need some context.
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Disco Hippie

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #49 on: October 06, 2020, 09:46:35 PM »
I'm not sure that would be an accurate excuse.

Some MU peer Universities changed tactics to remedy any shortfalls in enrollment. Several of those Universities either hit or exceeded targets despite COVID.

Interesting.  Can you elaborate more on these tactics Forgetful? 

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #50 on: October 06, 2020, 10:31:02 PM »
Interesting.  Can you elaborate more on these tactics Forgetful?

Some institutions turned their focus to more local students, and expanded their range for these students in terms of test scores.

By doing so they were able to capitalize on local students, who were close test scores wise, that would prefer to stay near home given the situation in COVID. Students that may have not thought they could be admitted otherwise.

In some cases, that simultaneously allowed Universities to expand diversity.

dgies9156

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #51 on: October 06, 2020, 10:34:45 PM »
A couple of observations worthy of consideration:

1) Different things are expected out of an education today then the years when I was at MU. At the time, Marquette was proud of turning our well-educated persons who were liberally educated. Today, it's about finding a job. Period. Engineering, Law, Business, Health Sciences do well. Liberal Arts less so. Schools with demonstrated  placement records do well. Those that don't suffer. Marquette is in the middle on this one.

2) With the exception of perhaps two dozen or so institutions, you go to college where you want to work and live someday. If you go to Marquette, your best chance of being noticed will be in Wisconsin, Illinois, Minnesota, Michigan, Northern Indiana and maybe Iowa. If you want to live in these states for a good part of your life, Marquette is a great place and its graduates are distinguished. But in case you haven't noticed, the country is growing but the Great Lakes states are not. That's a problem for Marquette when it comes placing grads -- and people know it. The hot growth cities in the eastern United States are Charlotte, Nashville, Raleigh-Durham and Orlando. Maybe Washington, DC. In these cities, Marquette is about as well known as University of Minnesota-Duluth. Or Grinnell College.

3) Basketball helps. To the extent that the University of Notre Dame is a national university, it's because of its football program. In the 1970s, Marquette was well-known nationally because of our outstanding basketball program. When we fell off the radar in basketball, so we also did in attracting interest nationally. We reverted somewhat to being a Wisconsin/Illinois college. If we want a large freshman class, it requires visibility and interest. I question whether we have this right now. This is why Wojo is so important to our school.

4) MU's costs are out of line with value. OK, I get why someone would pay $70,000-plus annually to go to Harvard, all-in. I don't want to sound elitist, but one probably will recoup the cost over time due to the name value of a Harvard degree. Same for Yale, Stanford, Columbia etc. Marquette isn't in that league and yet our costs are approaching it. Imagine if you wanted to live in Nashville. Would you be better off paying for Marquette or the University of Tennessee? Years ago, when I was evaluating colleges, the answer was NOT orange and white, even though UT was a hell of a lot cheaper than MU. I think Marquette is a better school for many people, but if you can get in-state rates at UT, the equation evens out. Same for Illinois, Wisconsin, Iowa or Indiana.

5) Costs Rose. OK, I get that the cost of educating today is different than years ago. And expectations are higher. But it's time to take a hard look at enrollment, what students want and what they're willing to pay for. Don't know enough to know about Marquette's curriculum today, but I'm guess there's a lot of fat. Time for a hard look -- a zero based budgeting approach.

6) Bad Press. Marquette has received some very bad press in the last decade or so. From basketball players whose foibles ended up on Page 1 of the Chicago Tribune, to a Dean Candidate who was at odds with Catholic teaching to reverence for certain revolutionaries with a very checkered past, Marquette has done an occasionally nice job of alienating the folks most likely to give to increase the endowment. You're always going to have malcontents who won't give for a perceived slight, but some of the high-profile incidents have proven hard for some to swallow.

Long before Covid-19 hit, a Marquette development officer talked about demographic changes and how the university will have to deal with bigger enrollment fights. It's a lot like what happened after the Baby Boom finished passing through the University in the mid-1980s. The Millennials will be through in the next few years and it's my view Marquette has two options -- up its game on the enrollment and image side -- or cut the heck out of costs, programs and administration.

Disco Hippie

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #52 on: October 06, 2020, 11:37:45 PM »
A couple of observations worthy of consideration:

2) With the exception of perhaps two dozen or so institutions, you go to college where you want to work and live someday. If you go to Marquette, your best chance of being noticed will be in Wisconsin, Illinois, Minnesota, Michigan, Northern Indiana and maybe Iowa. If you want to live in these states for a good part of your life, Marquette is a great place and its graduates are distinguished. But in case you haven't noticed, the country is growing but the Great Lakes states are not. That's a problem for Marquette when it comes placing grads -- and people know it. The hot growth cities in the eastern United States are Charlotte, Nashville, Raleigh-Durham and Orlando. Maybe Washington, DC. In these cities, Marquette is about as well known as University of Minnesota-Duluth. Or Grinnell College.

3) Basketball helps. To the extent that the University of Notre Dame is a national university, it's because of its football program. In the 1970s, Marquette was well-known nationally because of our outstanding basketball program. When we fell off the radar in basketball, so we also did in attracting interest nationally. We reverted somewhat to being a Wisconsin/Illinois college. If we want a large freshman class, it requires visibility and interest. I question whether we have this right now. This is why Wojo is so important to our school.


Great points Dgies9156! 

I agree with pretty much everything you said except point 2, although my geography might be skewing my POV on that because I live in the bubble that is the NYC suburbs.   In any case, students here travel all over the country to go to college.  While inevitably some students choose to pursue a career near their alma-mater following graduation, a far greater number return to the NYC Metro area following graduation. 

Again I get that it may not be fair to compare NYC to the rest of the country, especially given so may young grads from elsewhere aspire to move to NYC post graduation, (at least before Covid), but students from this area travel all over the country for college.  In fact the Northeastern flagships are considerably less popular than most Big 10 and SEC schools these days.   The Marquette brand is still well known enough in the areas you mentioned where grads can compete.  Of course it won't be as well known as the local schools but that's true for pretty much every non-local school except for the two dozen or so obvious institutions you referenced.

As for point 3, I couldn't agree more and it's a shame.  Basketball definitely helps but I think MU is too dependent on it.  They also believed that launching a competitive D1 LAX program would help recruiting in NE and Mid-Atlantic states.  I too, thought it would but unfortunately the matriculations from out here have barely budged in the last 10 years except for the LAX rosters.

MU needs to up it's game on the image and enrollment side big time because Hoops and LAX clearly aren't going to do that for them.   I've been saying this for years but because upping their image game is anathema to "THE MISSION" they won't, which is infuriating.
« Last Edit: October 06, 2020, 11:42:17 PM by Disco Hippie »

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #53 on: October 07, 2020, 07:46:17 AM »
I don’t doubt that the declining enrollment at Marquette is more than just Covid. That said, it would be interesting to see the two-year decreases at comparable universities, to gauge the magnitude of the problem.


It isn't.  A 20%+ decrease in enrollment is hardly something that is common.
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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #54 on: October 07, 2020, 07:48:35 AM »
Some institutions turned their focus to more local students, and expanded their range for these students in terms of test scores.

By doing so they were able to capitalize on local students, who were close test scores wise, that would prefer to stay near home given the situation in COVID. Students that may have not thought they could be admitted otherwise.

In some cases, that simultaneously allowed Universities to expand diversity.


Also the local angle has brought in more transfers who want to be closer to home.  We were getting transfers from local students who just didn't want to go "away" up until the week before classes started. 
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Fluffy Blue Monster

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #55 on: October 07, 2020, 07:53:35 AM »
A couple of observations worthy of consideration:

1) Different things are expected out of an education today then the years when I was at MU. At the time, Marquette was proud of turning our well-educated persons who were liberally educated. Today, it's about finding a job. Period. Engineering, Law, Business, Health Sciences do well. Liberal Arts less so. Schools with demonstrated  placement records do well. Those that don't suffer. Marquette is in the middle on this one.

2) With the exception of perhaps two dozen or so institutions, you go to college where you want to work and live someday. If you go to Marquette, your best chance of being noticed will be in Wisconsin, Illinois, Minnesota, Michigan, Northern Indiana and maybe Iowa. If you want to live in these states for a good part of your life, Marquette is a great place and its graduates are distinguished. But in case you haven't noticed, the country is growing but the Great Lakes states are not. That's a problem for Marquette when it comes placing grads -- and people know it. The hot growth cities in the eastern United States are Charlotte, Nashville, Raleigh-Durham and Orlando. Maybe Washington, DC. In these cities, Marquette is about as well known as University of Minnesota-Duluth. Or Grinnell College.

3) Basketball helps. To the extent that the University of Notre Dame is a national university, it's because of its football program. In the 1970s, Marquette was well-known nationally because of our outstanding basketball program. When we fell off the radar in basketball, so we also did in attracting interest nationally. We reverted somewhat to being a Wisconsin/Illinois college. If we want a large freshman class, it requires visibility and interest. I question whether we have this right now. This is why Wojo is so important to our school.

4) MU's costs are out of line with value. OK, I get why someone would pay $70,000-plus annually to go to Harvard, all-in. I don't want to sound elitist, but one probably will recoup the cost over time due to the name value of a Harvard degree. Same for Yale, Stanford, Columbia etc. Marquette isn't in that league and yet our costs are approaching it. Imagine if you wanted to live in Nashville. Would you be better off paying for Marquette or the University of Tennessee? Years ago, when I was evaluating colleges, the answer was NOT orange and white, even though UT was a hell of a lot cheaper than MU. I think Marquette is a better school for many people, but if you can get in-state rates at UT, the equation evens out. Same for Illinois, Wisconsin, Iowa or Indiana.

5) Costs Rose. OK, I get that the cost of educating today is different than years ago. And expectations are higher. But it's time to take a hard look at enrollment, what students want and what they're willing to pay for. Don't know enough to know about Marquette's curriculum today, but I'm guess there's a lot of fat. Time for a hard look -- a zero based budgeting approach.

6) Bad Press. Marquette has received some very bad press in the last decade or so. From basketball players whose foibles ended up on Page 1 of the Chicago Tribune, to a Dean Candidate who was at odds with Catholic teaching to reverence for certain revolutionaries with a very checkered past, Marquette has done an occasionally nice job of alienating the folks most likely to give to increase the endowment. You're always going to have malcontents who won't give for a perceived slight, but some of the high-profile incidents have proven hard for some to swallow.

Long before Covid-19 hit, a Marquette development officer talked about demographic changes and how the university will have to deal with bigger enrollment fights. It's a lot like what happened after the Baby Boom finished passing through the University in the mid-1980s. The Millennials will be through in the next few years and it's my view Marquette has two options -- up its game on the enrollment and image side -- or cut the heck out of costs, programs and administration.

Good points except...

Regarding #4, the average person isn't paying nearly $70,000.  I think it was mentioned that Marquette's net tuition was $23,000.  Add another $14,000 for room, board and fees, and the average student is paying $37,000.  That is about $10,000 more a year than a Wisconsin resident pays to go to UW-Madison.

#6 both happened around a decade ago.  Not even a factor.
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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #56 on: October 07, 2020, 10:42:33 AM »
I've said it before and people jump on me, but Marquette should have and still should be planning to get smaller.  Instead people would tell me they need to grow.  Makes no sense to me given where tech, college, etc is headed.  I think dgies9156 points are well thought out.

Also, the build, build, build, has to change to fund scholarships, fund scholarships. That will be the key to attracting students.  Yes, being wowed is great, but in the end the game will be more and more about cost except for the elite schools.
« Last Edit: October 07, 2020, 05:06:07 PM by GOO »

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #57 on: October 08, 2020, 07:31:21 AM »
MU needs to embrace and promote its spot in the pecking order of universities and not try to be something they are not. There is a market for a middle-of-road, Midwestern, jesuit, non-research based, urban university. All catholic schools can't be Notre Dame, Georgetown, or BC, hey?
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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #58 on: October 08, 2020, 07:48:24 AM »
MU needs to embrace and promote its spot in the pecking order of universities and not try to be something they are not. There is a market for a middle-of-road, Midwestern, jesuit, non-research based, urban university. All catholic schools can't be Notre Dame, Georgetown, or BC, hey?


I don't think Marquette is aspiring to be those schools.
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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #59 on: October 08, 2020, 08:57:53 AM »
I think MU aspires to be like Villanova. I don't think they aspire to be like one of the big 3
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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #60 on: October 08, 2020, 09:32:54 AM »
I think MU aspires to be like Villanova. I don't think they aspire to be like one of the big 3

Yeah nova/Fordham are probably our ceiling. Floor is the lower end of the 100s as our PT school will always keep us up in terms of rankings.

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #61 on: October 08, 2020, 10:09:32 AM »

I don't think Marquette is aspiring to be those schools.

There is a list of schools that MU tries to aspire towards. They are publicly available.

https://www.marquette.edu/strategic-planning/referents.php

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #62 on: October 08, 2020, 11:42:34 AM »
Good points except...

Regarding #4, the average person isn't paying nearly $70,000.  I think it was mentioned that Marquette's net tuition was $23,000.  Add another $14,000 for room, board and fees, and the average student is paying $37,000.  That is about $10,000 more a year than a Wisconsin resident pays to go to UW-Madison.

#6 both happened around a decade ago.  Not even a factor.

#6 had no effect. Neither story lasted more than a few days. The basketball incident didn't make it past Chicago media and was quickly out of public consciousness. If anything though, the debacle with the Dean and MU jettisoning her so quickly was more of a negative than hiring her.

For your numbers, does that net tuition include federal loans for which students qualify? 
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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #63 on: October 08, 2020, 11:45:13 AM »
#6 had no effect. Neither story lasted more than a few days. The basketball incident didn't make it past Chicago media and was quickly out of public consciousness. If anything though, the debacle with the Dean and MU jettisoning her so quickly was more of a negative than hiring her.

For your numbers, does that net tuition include federal loans for which students qualify?

Umm the basketball incident was on espn's main web page. And that was a BFD back then.

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #64 on: October 08, 2020, 11:47:19 AM »
#6 had no effect. Neither story lasted more than a few days. The basketball incident didn't make it past Chicago media and was quickly out of public consciousness. If anything though, the debacle with the Dean and MU jettisoning her so quickly was more of a negative than hiring her.

For your numbers, does that net tuition include federal loans for which students qualify? 


Net tuition is gross tuition minus any *institutional* aid (financial and academic) given to the student.  It's a measure that determines the revenue that each student generates.  Federal aid, including loans, is still revenue to the University.

Scholarship donations, and distributions from endowed scholarship funds, can be used to make up for the aid, but are not included in the equation.
« Last Edit: October 08, 2020, 11:49:13 AM by Fluffy Blue Monster »
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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #65 on: October 16, 2020, 08:18:07 AM »
Freshman enrollment has dropped more than 16 percent from last year at American colleges and universities — and by nearly a quarter at community colleges — as the threat of the coronavirus has disrupted the nation’s higher education system, the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center reported Thursday.

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/15/world/freshman-enrollment-drops-significantly-at-us-universities-and-community-colleges.html
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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #66 on: October 16, 2020, 08:58:29 AM »
Freshman enrollment has dropped more than 16 percent from last year at American colleges and universities — and by nearly a quarter at community colleges — as the threat of the coronavirus has disrupted the nation’s higher education system, the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center reported Thursday.

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/15/world/freshman-enrollment-drops-significantly-at-us-universities-and-community-colleges.html


Which again begs my question: Is MU really significantly worse off than most comparable schools?

Someone quoted a 20%+ decrease in freshman enrollment over 2 years. This study says that, on average, COVID caused a 16% reduction this year alone. That means over the past couple years MU has about a 5% or so loss unrelated to the virus. Is that really wildly out of the norm?

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #67 on: October 16, 2020, 09:07:40 AM »
I think Marquette's problem is that they had been planning for an enrollment increase, and had set their budget up to handle that.  So while they may not be worse off compared to others, they are worse off compared to what they planned for.
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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #68 on: October 16, 2020, 09:39:47 AM »
Thanks, very interesting, but I will use it to mean that experience shows that a 25% unused capacity leads to serious financial problems, like bankruptcy.  As in, unallocated overhead.

BTW, love The George Washington University, great school.  I did 21 hours of graduate school there, no degree, but very worthwhile and highly respected education/institution.

Maybe we should call it the middle finger rule and make everyone happy.

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #69 on: October 16, 2020, 11:18:12 AM »
There is a list of schools that MU tries to aspire towards. They are publicly available.

https://www.marquette.edu/strategic-planning/referents.php

And Nova isn’t even on it.

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #70 on: October 16, 2020, 12:43:32 PM »
This fall, my high school Senior has been getting deluged with the mailers from a variety of schools east of the Mississippi.   

I don't recall my current in-college daughter seeing the same quantity in the fall of her Senior year.  The volume always came throughout Junior year in the fall in spring which both daughters did see. 
My wife and I concluded that schools are desperate and anything to get a kid to take a second look and maybe take interest in a school they may have missed in their initial review of programs and colleges.   

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #71 on: October 16, 2020, 01:54:07 PM »
I think Marquette's problem is that they had been planning for an enrollment increase, and had set their budget up to handle that.  So while they may not be worse off compared to others, they are worse off compared to what they planned for.


Thanks. That makes a lot of sense.

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Re: MU: $15 million budget shortfall for fiscal 2020
« Reply #72 on: October 17, 2020, 01:49:57 PM »
And Nova isn’t even on it.

This list was made in 2015. At the time, Nova was categorized as a regional university by the USNWR. Being a national university was one of the criteria for being on this list. My guess is that you will see Villanova on the next one whenever the next strategic plan comes out.
God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
The courage to change the things I can,
And the wisdom to know the difference.

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