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Royal Purple

Founded 1901

Royal Purple

Founded 1901

Royal Purple

‘Our university is strong’

Chancellor hosts 2024 State of the University address
Ky McCombe
University of Wisconsin Whitewater Chancellor Corey King applauds and thanks the Chancellor’s committee at the State of the University Address held in the Hamilton Room, Tuesday morning, March 19, 2024.

UW-Whitewater Chancellor  Corey King, Provost John Chenoweth and shared governance leaders discussed successes and updates within the university community during the State of the University address, Tuesday, March 19, in the Hamilton Room of the University Center.

Between the approval of the Winther/Heide renovations, updates on the 2023-2024 strategic plan goals, chancellor’s cabinets and the budget heading into the new academic year, the address covered a wide range of university topics.

“We are here to recognize all of you, our people, as everyday across our Whitewater and Rock County campuses we have individuals and teams doing the noble work of transforming lives in the classroom, co-curricular spaces, department offices and the athletic field,” said King. “Whether it is your first year at UW-Whitewater or your 35th, we see you and celebrate you.”

Within the current academic year, the university has celebrated many milestones including the 110th year of the College of Business and Economics, nationally ranked sports teams and the inauguration of the 18th chancellor. King additionally mentioned the upcoming 50th anniversary of the child center on the Whitewater campus and a timeline for the Winther/Heide renovations. With construction looking to begin in late 2025, it estimated the renovations will be completed by the end of 2028.

Vice Chancellor of Finance and Administrative Affairs Brenda Jones shared where the university currently stands financially as well as the fiscal deficit.

“One of the first things we really need to understand about UW-Whitewater is that we are a tuition dependent institution,” said Jones. “Our primary source of revenue is tuition and fees, and the primary focus is on the tuition generating areas and related expenses.”

This year, the university budgeted to have over an $11 million deficit. However, Whitewater is expecting to finish the year with an almost $1 million surplus, said Jones.

Jones continued by stating there are several factors that go into the deficit and surplus calculations. 

“We had a great year for enrollment and retention,” said Jones. “I cannot stress enough how the work of everyone across this campus impacts those two areas. That alone brought $5 million more than we were anticipating in tuition revenue.

Additionally, there was about $4.7 million savings in the salary and fringe saving sector, and $2 million for the Winther/Heide renovations that were secured from the state legislature, not the university’s budget.

“Getting our fiscal house in order has required a shared commitment across the university,” King said. “We have made progress, and we have continually addressed our structural deficit. I want to be clear that our work in this space is not over.”

Members of the chancellor’s cabinet provided similar updates on their committees heading into the new academic year.

Special education professor and chairperson of the chancellor’s committee on disability concerns James Collins shared some goals the committee is working on improving within the campus including improving accessibility in Perkins Stadium, improvements to the sinks for wheelchair access in buildings for the College of Arts and Communication and adding high visibility paint strips to staircases.

The address concluded with the celebration of numerous faculty and staff members celebrating milestone years with the university, and Chancellor King winning the Spotlight Award for the U Matter initiative that was introduced in fall 2023.

“I believe, as well as our leadership, that the state of our university is strong,” said King.

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About the Contributors
Katie Popp
Katie Popp, Campus News Editor
Ky McCombe, Multimedia Manger

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