UM System President talks possible tuition hike, football & future cuts

1 month 2 weeks 2 days ago Wednesday, May 20 2020 May 20, 2020 Wednesday, May 20, 2020 9:32:00 PM CDT May 20, 2020 in News
By: Emily Spain, KOMU 8 Anchor
loading

KOMU 8's Emily Spain talked with UM System President Mun Choi on Wednesday about the ongoing budget battle the university faces due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

During the one-on-one interview, Choi discussed current and future furloughs and layoffs at one of mid-Missouri's largest employers. He also talked about a potential tuition increase, the upcoming football season and recent meetings with state leaders.

Check out his answers below.

Q: Gov. Parson said he planned to talk to higher education leaders Wednesday, what can you share about that conversation? 

“I believe that meeting was in confidence, so, I don't want to break that confidence. But, what he shared is basically for us to prepare for more challenges ahead because the state is facing those challenges. But, he also asked us to be very strategic and to ensure that we protect those programs that support our mission. And, where we can help the state is by continuing to provide opportunities for economic and workforce development. And, we'll continue to do that.” 

Q: What updates are you able to provide related to furloughs and layoffs at this time? 

"Well, they're continuing...This will be a process that takes several weeks to several months. And, even with the budget planning that we have of a 12.5 percent [cut] across the system, we need to be able to pivot if we hear of new cuts. They may come from the state, there's a possibility of that, as well as our understanding of what the fall enrollment looks like...And so, we're monitoring the situation very carefully."

Q: Is there any timetable for when we could hear about additional furloughs and layoffs?

"The furloughs and layoffs and separations are occurring on a weekly basis. And we provide that information on our website to be able to share that in a transparent way with our community."

Q: When MU looks at academic programs and potential reductions, how are those decisions made?

"We have an accomplished group of faculty and administrators that are going to be evaluating based on data. It's going to be a data informed decision that evaluates the value that each of our programs and units provide towards the mission...And we'll also make it an inclusive approach where we take input from the stakeholders, both internal and external, before making the final decision.

Q: What's been the hardest part during this pandemic?

"The hardest part is saying goodbye to people that we value. We had to do this in 2017 to address $100 million deficit across the system. And, that's been the hardest part. And as you know, as I said earlier, that process will continue because of the financial challenges that we face. And going into the future we have to be even more vigilant in our approach for financial stewardship, cutting costs, as well as finding ways to grow revenue so that we can continue with the mission of the university."

Q: During Tuesday's Board of Curators meeting there was a discussion about a potential increase in tuition? What can you tell us about that? 

"I stated that we are exploring a modest increase, an increase that would be a little bit above the CPI, which is 2.3. And, we have an opportunity to go up to about 4.5 percent in tuition, but, we don't want to go to that level. We know that this is a hard time for many families. But, also at the same time we are looking at our funding...we are in need of new revenues to be able to deliver the type of educational programs that our students deserve."

Q: How are all the schools in the SEC communicating right now and making decisions? 

"The SEC presidents, chancellors, as well as athletic directors meet on a weekly basis. And, just like the university here, they're watching the local public health guidelines as well as the national guidelines from the CDC. And, I know I'm confident that they'll make a decision that is in the best interest of our student athletes."

Q: What can you share about the upcoming football season at MU?

"I hope it starts on time on September 5, that we will have a full stadium, that we would have COVID-19 under control. But, I also know that there can be a resurgence very quickly. We've seen that in other parts of the world. But, we're developing the testing capabilities and the contact tracing, working very closely with the Boone County Public Health Department. So, we are going to be in a position where we are prepared to address resurgence if they occur on the campus."

More News

Grid
List
COLUMBIA - Several community members talked about the need to hold each other along with leaders accountable following a double... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, July 05 2020 Jul 5, 2020 Sunday, July 05, 2020 7:31:00 PM CDT July 05, 2020 in News
As COVID-19 continues to spread, KOMU 8 will continue to update you about impacts in the community. You can... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, July 05 2020 Jul 5, 2020 Sunday, July 05, 2020 6:09:26 PM CDT July 05, 2020 in News
MARIES COUNTY - The Maries County Sheriff's Office recovered human remains near the Gasconade River on Sunday, according to a... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, July 05 2020 Jul 5, 2020 Sunday, July 05, 2020 5:26:00 PM CDT July 05, 2020 in News
MOBERLY - Movie lovers have something to be excited about: some theaters are starting to reopen. The B&B Moberly... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, July 05 2020 Jul 5, 2020 Sunday, July 05, 2020 4:34:00 PM CDT July 05, 2020 in News
CAMDEN COUNTY — A one year old boy was killed at about 9:50 a.m. July 4 after being hit by... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, July 05 2020 Jul 5, 2020 Sunday, July 05, 2020 1:37:00 PM CDT July 05, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA — The Columbia Public School District released plans for reopening in the fall and said on June 22 that... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, July 05 2020 Jul 5, 2020 Sunday, July 05, 2020 1:00:00 PM CDT July 05, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA — UPDATE: In a press conference on Sunday, Columbia Police Chief Geoff Jones provided details on an overnight shooting... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, July 05 2020 Jul 5, 2020 Sunday, July 05, 2020 10:57:00 AM CDT July 05, 2020 in News
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — The Missouri Democratic Party’s chairwoman is stepping aside until at least September. The Kansas... More >>
2 days ago Saturday, July 04 2020 Jul 4, 2020 Saturday, July 04, 2020 6:22:27 PM CDT July 04, 2020 in News
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — The Jackson County, Missouri, prosecutor says two brothers have been charged with second-degree murder and... More >>
2 days ago Saturday, July 04 2020 Jul 4, 2020 Saturday, July 04, 2020 4:29:38 PM CDT July 04, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - The Fourth of July is a day which commemorates freedom. But this year’s holiday follows weeks of... More >>
2 days ago Saturday, July 04 2020 Jul 4, 2020 Saturday, July 04, 2020 3:45:00 PM CDT July 04, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - A rally was held at the Boone County Courthouse Saturday morning in an effort to show support for... More >>
2 days ago Saturday, July 04 2020 Jul 4, 2020 Saturday, July 04, 2020 3:23:00 PM CDT July 04, 2020 in News
As COVID-19 continues to spread, KOMU 8 will continue to update you about impacts in the community. You can... More >>
2 days ago Saturday, July 04 2020 Jul 4, 2020 Saturday, July 04, 2020 10:12:00 AM CDT July 04, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA —As mid-Missouri experiences a rise in coronavirus cases, the Health Department is struggling to keep up with contact tracing.... More >>
3 days ago Friday, July 03 2020 Jul 3, 2020 Friday, July 03, 2020 6:51:53 PM CDT July 03, 2020 in News
VIENNA — The Historical Society of Maries County is offering a $1,000 reward to anyone who can provide "substantial information"... More >>
3 days ago Friday, July 03 2020 Jul 3, 2020 Friday, July 03, 2020 6:32:32 PM CDT July 03, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - Four bars within 24 hours may have been exposed to someone who had COVID-19. Boone County Health... More >>
3 days ago Friday, July 03 2020 Jul 3, 2020 Friday, July 03, 2020 6:29:00 PM CDT July 03, 2020 in News
BOONVILLE - Hundreds of mid-Missourians stocked up on fireworks this week for the Fourth of July. 73-year-old Jim Edwards... More >>
3 days ago Friday, July 03 2020 Jul 3, 2020 Friday, July 03, 2020 5:50:00 PM CDT July 03, 2020 in News
BONNE TERRE, MO. (AP) — An eastern Missouri county has seen a big increase in confirmed coronavirus cases, and... More >>
3 days ago Friday, July 03 2020 Jul 3, 2020 Friday, July 03, 2020 3:52:13 PM CDT July 03, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA—Columbia City Council will vote Monday on a new mask ordinance that would require face coverings in all public places.... More >>
3 days ago Friday, July 03 2020 Jul 3, 2020 Friday, July 03, 2020 3:51:00 PM CDT July 03, 2020 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 73°
5am 73°
6am 72°
7am 74°
8am 78°