Read AUSG President Devontae Torriente's statement on the tuition increase here.

FAQ on the Budget

What is AUSG’s take on the budget?

AUSG believes that with any tuition increase, there needs to be continued support for financial aid and student services. Moreover, we are of the student-centric position that at the end of the day, a tuition increase means having to finance a more expensive education at AU. We do believe that it is important to provide more financial aid, counseling center staff, and another Title IX coordinator, among other things, all of which AUSG pushed for in light of the likelihood of a tuition increase. We knew that balancing the budget was going to be a priority, so we decided to center increased support in terms of financial aid and campus life resources.

 

How exactly does the budget process work?

Every two years, the Provost and the Chief Financial Officer of the University chair the University Budget Committee consisting of students, faculty, and staff from across campus, to create a recommended budget.  The UBC considers any aspects of the previous budget that were not accurately projected. In the current fiscal year budget, revenues in some categories were not meeting projections, so that information was considered in planning future revenue projections or future expenses can be adjusted. give their recommendations to the President who then has the ability to alter it any way they see fit. After that, the budget is passed along to the Board of Trustees Finance and Investment Committee for review. Once passed through committee, the Board of Trustees meets the next day to vote on the budget. They can make any alterations they see fit.

 

Are any student voices involved in the process?

It is standard for AUSG, the Graduate Leadership Council, and the Student Bar Association to be involved. Along with those representatives, the Student Trustee sits on the Board of Trustees as a nonvoting member. It is also important to note that the University Budget Committee is not a voting entity. '

 

I’m a student on financial aid. What does this mean for me?

Your need-based aid is slated to increase as tuition goes up, as long as your financial situation stays the same.

 

How much is my tuition going up?

In 2018, overall tuition will see a net increase of $1,762. In 2019, that increase will be $1,832.

 

Besides student services, what does my tuition go to?

Since the university primarily depends on tuition for funds, it is also spent on things such as the development of East Campus, faculty salaries to remain competitive in the market, staff and personnel salaries, and facilities management.

 

How can I learn more about how this budget will be allocated?

You can find more details about the budget process here. The AUSG Guide is meant to be a student-focused with the intention of highlighting what we believe directly and mostly impacts the student experience. However there are other details students may find useful to know and can be find online. You can contact the Board of Trustees at bot@american.edu for specific questions about the budget approval process. You can also reach out to students who were involved in the process, including Shyheim Snead, the Student Trustee (studenttrustee@american.edu); Valentina Fernandez, the Student Trustee-Elect (valentina.fernandez@ausg.org); Devontae Torriente, the AUSG president (president@ausg.org); and Shannon McDermott, AUSG comptroller (comptroller@ausg.org).

 

Who else does the budget process consider?

Yes! The stakeholders in the budget process are students (undergraduate, graduate, and law), faculty, and staff at every level of the institution.

 

How did the board arrive at 4%?

The recommended UBC budget goes to the president for final adjustments and then to the board for approval. When the UBC finished its work this year, it recommended a budget that was not quite in balance. That is, there were slightly more expenses than revenues. The president, working with the provost and CFO, worked to get the final budget in balance. The board received and approved a balanced budget, which recommended a 4% increase in tuition in order to meet the university's financial obligations, including additional services and for 2% inflation.  If tuition had remained constant, the university would have been faced with a budget deficit.  


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