Tough Times Tough Choices
page 1 |
2 | 3
| 4 |
5 | 6 |
preparation for what may come, UCLA Chancellor Albert Carnesale
has implemented a partial hiring freeze on staff and asked that
the campus which will enroll some 4,200 freshmen in Fall
2002 begin planning for possible reductions in resources
as high as 8 percent over the next two years.
learn more about what UCLA confronts as it strives to compete effectively
in the marketplace of higher education during a time of severe budgetary
shortfalls, UCLA Magazine Senior Writer Marina Dundjerski '94 talked
with Chancellor Carnesale.
At a time when California, like so many other states, is facing
a budget deficit, where does the University of California fit into
For some time now, the resources available to private universities
have been growing faster than the resources available to public
universities. There's always been a gap; public universities have
always done more with less. But that gap grew with the expansion
of private endowments, particularly in the 1990s, while public universities'
tuition and state funding did not rise nearly as rapidly.
The principal challenge for us, in light of that gap, is to be able
to compete for the very best people faculty, students and
What is fueling this gap?
There are several ways to look at it. Let's start with tuition.
Tuition at a first-rank private university is about $25,000 a year.
Our fees are about $4,000 a year. We also receive about $9,000 per
student from the state. But $9,000 plus $4,000 is $13,000, which
is about half of what a private university collects in tuition.
Second, the best private universities have very large endowments.
At UCLA, we have a large endowment compared to other public universities,
but certainly not when compared to elite private universities. Our
endowment is on the order of one-tenth of Harvard's endowment [valued
at $1.8 billion at the end of Fiscal Year 2001], and we have twice
as many students as Harvard has. So the state contribution is crucial,
and now we're faced not only with funding that is not increasing
at a rate comparable to the privates, but that might not grow at
all, or possibly even shrink.
You have asked the campus to begin planning for a budget
reduction. Why is that necessary now?
A: We are preparing for the possibility
of substantial decreases in state funding. As painful as that would
be, it is important for us to plan for it and determine how we might
absorb those cuts in ways that cause the least damage to the quality
of education, research and service at UCLA.