Thursday, September 15, 2005
Athletics awards $35,000 to student services
By Rebecca Wyatt, OU Web Writer
During the Sept. 14 Oakland University Board of Trustees meeting, university officials demonstrated that despite tough budget and economic times, the university is still working for students. With money from athletics participation in the NCAA Tournament being given directly to student services and plans in the works for a Student Services Center, the board witnessed the administration’s desire to make this the best environment for students.
OU Athletics was awarded an additional share of money from the Mid-Continental Conferece for the men’s basketball team’s first-ever appearance in the NCAA Tournament last spring. Athletics Director Jack Mehl wanted to put some of the money back to the students who help make the participation possible.
“When the hour is the darkest and things are the toughest, the students will stand up and participate,” Mehl said.
Mehl presented Vice President of Student Affairs Mary Beth Snyder with $15,000 to enhance student life on campus.
“We will put this to good use,” Snyder said.
Vice President of Academic Affairs and Provost Virinder Moudgil was awarded $20,000 to be used for academic programs.
“If one things stands out, Oakland athletes are great students as well,” Moudgil said.
The board also heard preliminary plans for a new Student Services Center that would call for a 19,400-square-foot expansion and renovation to North Foundation Hall, Oakland’s first academic building. Capital Planning and Design, pending board approval in October, has submitted a request to the state for funding.
“It is anticipated within a month of so a decision will be made on this structure,” OU President Gary Russi told the board.
Any matching funds needed to the project would come from fund raising, not the general fund budget.
The Student Services Center would house all essential undergraduate academic, financial aid and advising services including a First Year and Transfer Student Advising Center, Career Resource Lab, Career Services and the Office of the Registrar, which will join the Student Business Services already in North Foundation Hall.
Two classrooms and existing office spaces also will be renovated into more classroom space.
In other board action:
- During a special formal session held at the beginning of the meeting, the board approved the request by University Technology Services to purchase the new version of Banner, a higher education business software program, and more Oracle licenses, which will increase accessibility to those who use it.
- The board heard plans to replace the cooling system in the Dodge Hall Data Center. The cooling system was installed in 1982 and has been identified as a high priority item by a campus risk assessment. Money from the 2005 budget would cover this expense if the board approved the action in October.
The next Board of Trustees meeting is Wednesday, Oct. 5, at 2 p.m. in Elliott Hall Auditorium. For more information including the entire meeting agenda, visit the Board of Trustees Web site.