Capital Budget Testimony to the Maryland General Assembly. Presented by Dr. Robert L. Caret

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1 Capital Budget Testimony to the Maryland General Assembly Presented by Dr. Robert L. Caret President, Towson University March 2009

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3 Capital Budget Testimony to the Maryland General Assembly Presented by Dr. Robert L. Caret President, Towson University March 2009

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5 Towson University: Maryland s Metropolitan University is Building Momentum Towson University By the Numbers n Founded in 1866 n 21,111 Total Enrollment 17,272 Undergraduate 3,893 Graduate n 79.7% of students are Marylanders n 41% of full-time students receive financial aid n 18.4% of students are minority n 18:1 Student/Faculty ratio n $93.7 million general fund operating budget request for FY10 n State funds per FTE student: $5,427 n Annual in-state tuition and fees: $7,418 n TU offers 63 undergraduate majors, 38 master s programs and 4 doctoral degrees directed toward the workforce needs of the State. n TU is home to a public radio station, WTMD, 20 Division I athletic teams (13 in women s sports, 7 in men s sports) and 199 student organizations and clubs. n The state of Maryland is home to over 70,000 Towson alumni. n 75% of TU s seniors indicated they plan to live/work in Maryland after graduation. n Towson University was ranked one of the Top 50 Best Values in Public Universities by the Princeton Review. n We continue to rank in the top 10 in the Public Universities-Master s (North) category for the U.S. News and World Report 2009 America s Best Colleges issue. Mr. Chairman and members of the committee, I appreciate the opportunity to come before you today to share Towson University s needs for capital resources to fully support and advance our mission of offering an affordable, accessible and quality education to Maryland s citizens. First, I would like to thank the Governor and General Assembly for their strong commitment to higher education and recognition that the University System of Maryland (USM) has a leading role in helping move the State s economy forward. It is clear you understand the State s future success relies on a welleducated workforce, and Towson University is delivering on that need. Additionally, I would like to thank the Governor and General Assembly for your continued support of Towson University s capital improvement plan. Our capital budget priorities remain consistent with and advance the university s strategic plan, Towson University 2010: Mapping the Future, as well as the Towson University Campus Master Plan, The Campus Master Plan provides the basis for the university s capital budget request in support of the University s planned enrollment growth to 25,000 students by This year we are conducting a five year update to the Campus Master Plan to ensure that our growth continues to occur in a controlled and efficient way that maximizes every dollar invested by the State. I testified earlier in the legislative session about our progress toward accomplishing the strategic goals and action items set forth in Towson University 2010: Mapping the Future. Highlights of my testimony included: Our growth of more than 1,100 FTE students in fall 2008, which brings the University s total enrollment to 21,111 students. This progress is evidence of our successful response to the System s charge to be the primary growth campus of traditional-age students in Maryland. Our establishment of a new peer group. Six years ago institutions such as James Madison University and the University of Massachusetts, Boston may have been considered aspirational for Towson. Today we have joined them, and much of our data rivals if not exceeds these highly-regarded peers. We intend to become a leader in our new peer group, just as we were a leader in the group we left behind. Page 3

6 Our success in launching a pilot summer trimester. This Efficiency and Effectiveness initiative has enabled us to absorb student growth and reduce time-to-degree by drawing on two already available resources during the summer months unused time and unused facilities. We exceeded expectations by enrolling 1,142 FTEs in summer 2008, representing an overall increase of 10.2 percent. Courses were offered in areas of high workforce needs, including health professions, Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) disciplines, and information technology. Our dedication to opening doors to our community with extensive outreach programs such as the Freshmen Transition Program, Cherry Hill Learning Zone Initiative, and Top Ten Percent Program. Our proactive role in expanding green programs on campus in an effort to increase campus sustainability and environmental awareness. I signed the American College and University President s Climate Commitment in 2007, pledging to reduce Towson s greenhouse gas emissions and create a plan for pursuing carbon neutrality. We also launched a single-stream recycling program, eliminating the need for material separation and maximizing the use of 2,800 new recycling bins added to campus. Sustainability Facts n 21 percent of the University s total waste stream was recycled in 2007 n 2,800 recycling containers were added on campus as part of our new RecycALL program n 332 pounds per student were recycled in 2007 n 3 campus buildings are slated to be LEED Silver-certified n 15 acres of campus have gone into perpetual easement for conservation since 2001 n 87 hybrid drivers purchased a permit through our discounted program n 3 electric vehicles were incorporated into the campus fleet These are just a few examples of how Towson University is building momentum as we progress toward accomplishing the Towson University 2010 vision. Please visit for more detailed information. Capital Improvement Plan Priority Today I would like to share with you the current status of the University s capital projects and discuss our main concerns for the five-year capital improvement plan. Towson University s top priority for the FY 2010 legislative session is maintaining the construction funding allocation for Phase II of the College of Liberal Arts Complex. College of Liberal Arts Complex Completion of the College of Liberal Arts Complex will result in an academic building that will contain 293,000 gross square feet of classroom, research, laboratory, student study, and office space. In addition to accommodating planned enrollment growth, completion of the project will consolidate ten departments of the College into one facility. Currently, departments within the College of Liberal Arts are housed in four separate buildings. Bringing the Liberal Arts faculty, staff, and Towson University s top priority for FY 2010 is to maintain construction funding for Phase II of the College of Liberal Arts Complex. FY 2010 FY 2011 College of Liberal Arts $35.7M $35.8M Phase II Construction Construction $6.4M Equipment Page 4

7 students together in one building will improve instructional delivery and operational efficiency. Space vacated as a result of this move will provide expanded space for the College of Education, which continues to grow and has substantive space needs. Phase I of the College of Liberal Arts Complex is more than 50 percent complete and will deliver 100,000 gross square feet for the fall 2009 semester. In FY 2009, the University received $3.95 million to complete design documents for bidding and construction of Phase II of the project. Design is on schedule to allow for construction to begin in July In FY 2010 the University CLA Phase I is on schedule to open in fall is scheduled to receive $35.7 million for construction of Phase II, with the remainder of the construction funding ($35.8 million) and equipment funding ($6.4 million) coming in FY Staying on this funding schedule will allow the University to deliver an additional 193,000 gross square feet and complete the building by the fall 2011 semester. We are pursuing Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) silver certification for the College of Liberal Arts Complex as well as all future buildings on campus. The College of Liberal Arts building will contain sustainable features such as green roofing, water efficient landscaping and high-performance HVAC systems with automated central controls to reduce energy consumption. Five Year Capital Project Plan For Towson University to meet the needs of today s students and achieve the State s workforce goals, funding for the following additional projects is needed over the next five years. As aforementioned, funding for and completion of the College of Liberal Arts Complex is Towson University s top priority for FY Phase II of the Campus-Wide Site, Safety and Infrastructure Project Smith Hall Expansion and Renovation The Smith Hall Expansion and Renovation has replaced the College of Health Professions project in our five year capital improvement plan due to Smith s current deplorable condition. FY 2010 FY 2011 FY 2012 FY 2013 FY2014 Campus-Wide Site, $1.6M $13.5M Safety and Infrastructure Planning Construction / Phase II Equipment Smith Hall Expansion $4.5M $4.5M $23.5M and Renovation Planning Planning Construction Page 5

8 Campus-Wide Site, Safety and Infrastructure Project The Campus-Wide Site, Safety and Infrastructure Project is upgrading roadways, pedestrian walkways and lighting systems to improve infrastructure and increase safety across campus. Storm water drainage and other infrastructure and utility systems are being improved to support new building projects and comply with state regulatory requirements. Most of the infrastructure systems in the main campus were designed and constructed more than 30 years ago to serve approximately 9,000 students and a much smaller campus physical plant. These systems are inadequate for our current enrollment of 21,111 students and are not capable of supporting the additional buildings and enrollment proposed over the next several years. Funding for design of Phase I of the Campus-Wide Site, Safety and Infrastructure Project was received in FY With the allocation of $18.3 million in construction funds in FY 2009, construction on Phase I began late in 2008 and is scheduled to be completed by the end of Phase II design and construction has been included in the Governor s five year plan in years FY 2012 ($1.5 million for planning) and FY 2013 ($13.5 million for construction), respectively. The Campus-Wide Site, Safety and Infrastructure Improvements Project includes a new main entry plaza for the University. Smith Hall Expansion and Renovation The Smith Hall Expansion and Renovation has replaced the College of Health Professions project in our five year capital improvement plan. Smith Hall is home to our Fisher College of Science and Mathematics, which includes the biology, chemistry, and physics departments, among others. The current condition of Smith Hall is deplorable. With each day that passes Smith Hall s facilities become less and less adequate for teaching students, conducting labs, and housing research. The building was constructed before the current generation of scientific equipment was even contemplated. As a result, the building has inadequate power and water, as well as underperforming HVAC systems. Moreover, the lab spaces are outdated and worn. Many first-time students have encountered more adequate facilities at their high school or community college. Smith Hall s current condition puts Towson at a distinct disadvantage. Smith Hall is where instruction takes place for nearly 2,000 STEM majors. All of TU s 17,000 undergraduate students take science-related general education requirements there. About 800 nursing students and 2,500 health professions students required to take biology and chemistry courses are also affected. We are committed to the workforce needs of the State and serving our growing population of students in the health professions and STEM disciplines, but Smith Hall s infrastructure issues are plaguing our instructional capabilities. Page 6

9 The University has begun to address some of the more critical issues with the hope that we can keep the facility limping along until the renovation. We are spending significant dollars annually to that end. In hopes of correcting this situation, the University has moved the Smith Hall Expansion and Renovation into Towson s five-year capital plan. The expansion building is proposed to be 70,000 gross square feet. The renovation will encompass the entire 220,445 gross square feet of the current building, along with the demolition of Linthicum Hall. The objectives for the project are as follows: 1. Deliver new and modern teaching, learning, and research space to accommodate the current and planned enrollment and academic programs of the College; 2. Add, update and properly equip space to support existing and expanded student and faculty research facilities in the institutional mission and the undergraduate and graduate curriculum; 3. Complete a renovation of Smith Hall to upgrade the current facility to create a suitable and safe environment for teaching, learning and research, and eliminate the current $8.7 million deferred maintenance backlog; 4. Demolish Linthicum Hall to provide a footprint in which to construct the expansion building per the approved Campus Master Plan. This will eliminate the current $8.5 million deferred maintenance backlog in Linthicum Hall; 5. Construct and renovate in a sustainable way to achieve LEED Silver certification for the project; and 6. Complete the main academic campus central utility loop, including the connection of Smith Hall and the expansion building. Funding for the project has been included in the five-year capital improvement program in years FY 2012 ($4.5 million for planning), FY 2013 ($4.5 million for planning), and FY 2014 ($23.5 million for construction). Page 7

10 Addressing Challenges Towson University s capital projects have been carefully planned to coincide with our targeted enrollment growth in order to increase capacity without compromising academic quality. The associated graph illustrates the space deficits that will occur with deferral of capital project schedules. The timing of funding for the design and construction of the College of Liberal Arts Complex, the Campus-Wide Site, Safety and Infrastructure project, and the Smith Hall Expansion and Renovation is extremely important if Towson University is to meet the academic and space needs of the current student body and achieve our goals related to enrollment growth and mix. Projected Enrollment Growth and Corresponding Space Deficit, x1,000 NASF Projected Space Deficit Projected Enrollment (on Towson Campus) x1,000 Students 25 Building Momentum at Maryland s Metropolitan University Quality, accessibility, and affordability are important components of higher education in Maryland. It is clear that the State of Maryland, the University System of Maryland, and Towson University are united in their commitment to offer an outstanding education to our citizens. Towson University graduates more than 4,000 students annually, eighty percent of which remain to live and work in Maryland. Therefore, it remains vitally important for us to educate, train, and retain Maryland s talent Fall 2009: CLA Building Phase I (net +58,000 NASF) Fall 2011: CLA Building Phase II (net +92,000 NASF) Fall 2013: Linthicum Hall Demolished (net -57,000 NASF) Fall 2015: Smith Hall Addition/Renovation (net +38,000 NASF) (NASF = Net Assignable Square Feet) 17 As Maryland s Metropolitan University, we remain committed to serving as a workforce engine for the State and working with local and State governments and other community partners to ensure the success of our students and graduates. Thank you for your investment in our success in the past and for working with us to develop a compatible strategy for facility and enrollment growth in the future. With your support we will continue to advance our mission, meet critical workforce needs, and provide expertise to address social, economic and community issues and our physical campus will reflect the pride and energy we bring to that task. Thank you. Page 8

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12 Towson University 8000 York Road Towson, MD

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