UF to receive additional $7.4 million in state performance funding

June 22, 2017

The University of Florida will receive an additional $7.4 million in state performance funding this year versus last year, bringing the total allotted to the university since 2014 to more than $103 million. The money will be used in UF’s ongoing efforts to hire and retain the world’s best and brightest faculty and keep the university on the path to becoming one of the nation’s very best public research universities.
UF received 95 points out of 100 – the highest score of all the 11 public universities in Florida measured in the performance-funding model created in 2014 by the Florida Board of Governors, the governing body for the State University System of Florida.
The university’s high score was due in part to increasing its number of licenses and options executed on technologies developed at the university, a measure of how successful its ideas are in the marketplace, from 147 to 261. That distinction gave UF a No. 3 ranking nationwide, according to the latest statistics released in November by the Association of University Technology Managers.
UF credits its success in that arena to playing “the long game,” focusing on closing deals, fostering a great reputation and encouraging commercially targeted thinking among faculty.
“I am very pleased with the University of Florida’s top score and grateful for the ongoing support of the governor, the Legislature and the Board of Governors,” UF President Kent Fuchs said. “When UF succeeds, the state of Florida wins.”
Eight of the metrics are common to all universities. They are the following, with UF’s score indicated on a 1-to-10 scale with 10 being the best:

percent of bachelor’s graduates employed (Earning $25,000+) or continuing their education — 8
bachelor’s degrees awarded in areas of strategic emphasis — 10
median wages of bachelor’s graduates employed one year after graduation — 10
university access rate (percent of undergraduates with a Pell grant) – 9
average cost to the student — 8
graduate degrees awarded in areas of strategic emphasis — 10
six-year graduation rate — 10
academic progress rate — 10

Two of the 10 metrics are “choice” metrics: one picked by the Board of Governors and one by the university boards of trustees. For UF, those metrics are:

number of licenses and options executed annually on its technologies — 10
faculty awards — 10

Based on their excellence or improvement on the board’s metrics, universities are eligible for a share of the $520 million allocated by the governor and Legislature during the 2017 legislative session.
“In the past four years, we’ve seen steady improvements at the system level and for individual universities,” said Tom Kuntz, Board of Governors’ chair. “Especially exciting is that we’ve seen universities in the bottom three soar to the top of the pack as they’ve renewed their focus on student success.”
The board’s newest metric, cost-to-the-student, also pointed to positive outcomes. The average cost in the SUS of earning a bachelor’s degree is less than $15,000 after financial aid (grants, scholarships and waivers).  The average cost at the University of Florida has been calculated by the board to be $10,700.  Furthermore, University Work Plans, in which institutions lay out their future financial goals, indicate that SUS universities are expected to decrease their prices further in the coming years, cutting the student cost per degree from $14,820 to $14,090 by the 2019-2020 school year.
“Affordability has been a priority for the governor and the Legislature as well as the Board of Governors because it increases student access and relieves student debt,” said Ned Lautenbach, vice chair of the Board of Governors and chair of the Budget and Finance Committee. “It’s exciting to see the universities turning that goal into a reality.”

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UF to hire 500 new faculty in major initiative

June 9, 2017

The University of Florida will hire 500 new faculty to further enhance teaching and research and to continue to be one of the very best research universities in the nation, UF President Kent Fuchs announced today. UF’s Board of Trustees unanimously approved a resolution in support of the announcement.
Funding for the new hires and compensation increases will come from state allocations, alumni and friends, as well as university resources.
“We know what we need to do and we are laser-focused on several areas that will have the greatest impact on our educational and research missions while giving UF an edge to compete successfully with the nation’s other top institutions for talented faculty, students and staff,” Fuchs said. “UF ranks among the top 10 public research universities and we have our eye on being among the top five.”
The 500 new faculty hires represent a number over and above the 300 to 400 faculty that UF hires annually to replace those who retire or leave the university, UF Provost Joe Glover said.
Funding for new hires and compensation increases will come initially from a $52 million allocation to UF that the Legislature approved earlier this year and from reallocated internal resources, Glover said. The university will also seek additional funding from a variety of sources for future years.
The hiring plan was created to address two primary university goals: reaching top-ranked status by strengthening various research disciplines, and improving the university’s student-faculty ratio, a widely recognized metric in determining an institution’s excellence and stature.
UF’s current student-faculty ratio is 20 to 1; the 500 new hires ultimately will result in a student-faculty ratio of 16 to 1. By comparison, the ratio at the University of Michigan, is 15 to 1. (Michigan, like UF, belongs to the Association of American Universities and is considered a peer institution to UF; others include the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the University of California, Berkeley.)
The new faculty will be hired in a variety of fields, Glover said, but “certainly a good portion will be in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) and health. We will also give priority to areas focused on new business start-ups, tech transfer and economic development.”
The new hires will be in addition to the growth of 115 faculty hired in the past three years with funding the Legislature has provided as part of UF’s designation as a preeminent university.
The announcement of the new hiring initiative follows Wednesday’s news that UF faculty achieved a new high of nearly $800 million in research expenditures for the year. UF also announced an expected new record in annual fundraising topping $440 million. Additionally, five faculty became members of the National Academies during the year.
Fuchs said that UF has already made tremendous progress – and the new initiatives and records will propel UF to the highest ranks.
“In the vast majority of university rankings, the University of Florida is among the top 10 public research universities in the nation,” Fuchs said.  “Our goal now is to be among the top five.”

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UF to hire 500 new faculty in major initiative

June 9, 2017

The University of Florida will hire 500 new faculty to further enhance teaching and research and to continue to be one of the very best research universities in the nation, UF President Kent Fuchs announced today. UF’s Board of Trustees unanimously approved a resolution in support of the announcement.
Funding for the new hires and compensation increases will come from state allocations, alumni and friends, as well as university resources.
“We know what we need to do and we are laser-focused on several areas that will have the greatest impact on our educational and research missions while giving UF an edge to compete successfully with the nation’s other top institutions for talented faculty, students and staff,” Fuchs said. “UF ranks among the top 10 public research universities and we have our eye on being among the top five.”
The 500 new faculty hires represent a number over and above the 300 to 400 faculty that UF hires annually to replace those who retire or leave the university, UF Provost Joe Glover said.
Funding for new hires and compensation increases will come initially from a $52 million allocation to UF that the Legislature approved earlier this year and from reallocated internal resources, Glover said. The university will also seek additional funding from a variety of sources for future years.
The hiring plan was created to address two primary university goals: reaching top-ranked status by strengthening various research disciplines, and improving the university’s student-faculty ratio, a widely recognized metric in determining an institution’s excellence and stature.
UF’s current student-faculty ratio is 20 to 1; the 500 new hires ultimately will result in a student-faculty ratio of 16 to 1. By comparison, the ratio at the University of Michigan, is 15 to 1. (Michigan, like UF, belongs to the Association of American Universities and is considered a peer institution to UF; others include the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the University of California, Berkeley.)
The new faculty will be hired in a variety of fields, Glover said, but “certainly a good portion will be in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) and health. We will also give priority to areas focused on new business start-ups, tech transfer and economic development.”
The new hires will be in addition to the growth of 115 faculty hired in the past three years with funding the Legislature has provided as part of UF’s designation as a preeminent university.
The announcement of the new hiring initiative follows Wednesday’s news that UF faculty achieved a new high of nearly $800 million in research expenditures for the year. UF also announced an expected new record in annual fundraising topping $440 million. Additionally, five faculty became members of the National Academies during the year.
Fuchs said that UF has already made tremendous progress – and the new initiatives and records will propel UF to the highest ranks.
“In the vast majority of university rankings, the University of Florida is among the top 10 public research universities in the nation,” Fuchs said.  “Our goal now is to be among the top five.”

Continue Reading