Trustees Approve Budget, Tuition

By Jack Dunn
Director of Public Affairs

    The Universityís Board of Trustees approved a $449.9 million budget and set annual tuition, room and board charges at $32,334 at its Feb. 4 meeting in Burns Library.

    The budget, balanced for the 29th consecutive year, included an additional $4.2 million for student financial aid - a 6 percent increase - and $42.7 million to support new faculty and academic support initiatives and additional technology positions. It also provided a $6 million use allowance increase for depreciation expenses associated with Higgins Hall renovations, dormitory upgrades and athletic facility improvements.

    Administrative productivity improvement savings of $1.1 million were included in the budget as part of Project Delta.

    The overall tuition, room and board increase of 4.1 percent included a 4.5 percent increase for tuition, a 4 percent increase for room charges and a 1.9 percent increase for board, placing the Universityís tuition 28th among the 35 select colleges and universities with which Boston College competes for students.

    In other news, Investment Chairman Robert J. Morrissey announced the Universityís endowment had surpassed $1 billion, placing Boston Collegeís among the largest university endowments in the United States, and the largest of any Jesuit institution in the world.

    In addition, Jack Connors, chairman of the Universityís Development Committee, informed board members the Ever to Excel Campaign had reached $186 million towards its $400 million goal, including 48 gifts of $1 million or more, and $72 million in gifts from trustees.

    "We have reached 47 percent of our goal to date and are well on our way to achieving our $400 million goal," said Connors.

    In his remarks on the state of Boston College, University President William P. Leahy, SJ, reported BC was enjoying another strong year in admissions with 20,500 applications to date and the possibility of reaching a total of 21,000. With the size of the incoming freshman class being reduced by 100, Leahy noted, the Class of 2004 will be the most selective in University history.

    The meeting also included a presentation by Chemistry Department Chairman Prof. Larry McLaughlin and Vanderslice Professor Amir Hoveyda on the department and its objectives for the future. McLaughlin reported increased research activity in the Chemistry Department had helped attract new faculty members, and that its funding had risen from $700,000 in 1990 to $2.5 million in 1999. It is targeted to reach a minimum of $5 million in 2004, he noted.

    Outlining the departmentís goals, McLaughlin proposed to sustain and advance national and international leadership positions in chemistry education and research, and to compete effectively with the top 10 chemistry programs in the areas of faculty recruitment and retention and undergraduate, graduate and post-doctoral recruitment and placement.

    In addition, McLaughlin noted, the department hopes to increase endowed undergraduate and graduate fellowships, endowed professorships, endowed research funds and state-of-the-art instrumentation.

    "From undergraduate to graduate student, from faculty to industry, we are working together at Boston College to create the best chemistry department in the nation," said McLaughlin.

    The next meeting of the Board of Trustees is scheduled for June 9.

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