NMU board OKs 2022-23 budget

Gavin Leach, vice president for finance and administration, NMU

By Journal Staff

MARQUETTE — The Northern Michigan University Board of Trustees approved a 2022-23 general fund operating budget of $118.7 million, a 0.4% increase over last year.

“We’ve been able to control costs to adapt to a decrease in enrollment, and also utilize the annual savings we will realize as a result of state support to pay down a portion of the MPSERS retirement system unfunded liability, to make some key investments in a new academic program and student success embedded advisers, retention initiatives, disability services and mental health initiatives, and keep the overall budget balanced,” said Gavin Leach, vice president for finance and administration.

The board also approved three other budgets: auxiliary services, housing and residence life, and designated fund.

Trustees approved NMU’s five-year master plan and 2022-23 capital outlay request, both of which universities are required to submit annually to the Michigan Department of Management and Budget. The priority project identified in the capital outlay request remains the Northern Enterprise Center (College of Business), at $19.1 million.

As trustees prepare to conduct interviews with four presidential finalists on Monday and select the next person who will lead the institution, they voted unanimously to give current President Kerri Schuiling a $25,000 performance bonus for effectively executing her duties over the past year. Schuiling announced immediately afterward that she will be returning the bonus to the university through the NMU Foundation to create some type of endowment to support faculty.

“I’ve been the recipient of many gifts faculty give, not only when I was a student at Northern, but I appreciated their guidance when I was a new faculty member here years ago and, more recently, as I moved into administrative roles,” Schuiling said. “I’m taking this gift and doing something much more significant with it, working through the foundation. Sincere thanks to the trustees for the affirmation of my work, which I didn’t accomplish alone, and for enabling me to show gratefulness and pay forward the many gifts I have received as a student and employee of this university.”

In other action at Friday’s meeting, the board:

≤ Agreed that the recently renovated NMU Wildcat hockey locker room be named the “Walt Kyle Locker Room,” in accordance with the donors’ wishes.

≤ Approved Fiscal Year 2023 long-term maintenance projects and the following capital projects over $250,000: the remaining $6 million balance on the Berry Events Center ice-making system replacement; and a $1.2 million budget increase for the integrated Health and Wellness Center project that is underway.

≤ Granted emeritus status to Sandra Imdieke, education professor, and Kim Rotundo, registrar.

≤ Approved the following meeting schedule for calendar year 2023: Feb. 16-17; May 4-5; July 27-28; Sept. 28-29 or Oct. 5-6; and Dec. 14-15.

≤ Recognized NMU’s Center for Native American Studies for maintaining its place on the American Indian Science and Engineering Society’s annual list of the Top 200 Colleges for Indigenous Students, which will appear in the Winds of Change special college issue published in November.

≤ Received an update on NMU’s TRIO programs, which are federally funded and support low-income individuals, first-generation college students and individuals with disabilities with their educational plans from high school to post-baccalaureate programs.

These include Upward Bound, McNair Scholars and Student Support Services.


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