The State of the University address
Where we are and where we are going
Published: Wednesday, November 7, 2012
Updated: Friday, November 9, 2012 14:11
As 2013 approaches, CU Denver faculty, staff, and student body have many questions about where the university stands and where it is headed. In the 2012 State of the University address, Chancellor Don Elliman and Vice Chancellor Lilly Marks addressed these questions.
Chancellor Elliman specifically addressed the UCD campus, and began by giving some insight into several factors that give the university a significant upper hand compared to other universities. As it stands, UCD has a higher percentage of older students with work experience than most residential campuses.
Additionally, UCD is “the most ethnically diverse research university in Colorado with students of color now [making] up…28 percent of our overall enrollment,” said Chancellor Elliman.
Also, our urban location presents us with great opportunities as well as great challenges on the horizon.
Despite these characteristics, UCD is severely underfunded by the state, having gone from $33 million in state funding in 2005 to $21 million dollars in 2012, while enrollment increased from 12,000 to over 14,000 in the same timeframe. “Our challenges here are obvious,” Elliman said.
The chancellor said this problem should be answered with diversification of funding. The main focus would be on expanding philanthropic efforts, and Chancellor Elliman has set a goal of $20 million annually. Creating curricular partnerships with businesses to increase hands-on learning and expanding scholarship research grants funding would come as a second synergistic stream of cash flow.
He pointed to the development of new relevant programs within the colleges to establish these efforts. Last year the College of Architecture and Planning developed a new dual master of landscape architecture degree so that, for the first time, UCD students can earn an undergraduate degree in architecture in addition to master and doctorate degrees. He also pointed to the great strides made by the business school last year, and how he hopes those efforts will continue moving forward.
Other points he expanded on were the aspects of technology on campus, specifically keeping up with IT and technological factors in education, while keeping in mind the disruption that tech can pose. He tied all this together by expressing the need to be able to define UCD as a brand and package it so that the institution as a whole is better able to address the needs of students and the community it serves.
Chancellor Don Elliman appeared very concerned and interested in student success and degree completion, and vowed to ensure that the university continues to address this as its main goal. With many students on campus who also work, the amount of time it takes to complete a degree is lengthened. Yet Ellimen is committed to success within the student body and sees great things coming in the next few years.
“In closing, it is clear that the state of the university is strong,” Elliman said. “Yes, we have challenges, but there is so much upside, so much going on that is positive. We can define our own future.”