March 2018 Meeting Minutes

FRIDAY, MARCH 30, 2018


Regents Present
Daniel W. Campbell, Chair
Harris Simmons, Vice Chair
Jesselie B. Anderson
Nina Barnes
Marlin K. Jensen
Ron Jibson
Patricia Jones
Robert S. Marquardt
Mark Stoddard
Teresa L. Theurer
Alex Trujillo
Joyce P. Valdez
Thomas E. Wright

Regents Absent
Wilford Clyde
Steven Lund
Robert W. Prince
Cristina Ortega

Office of the Commissioner
David L. Buhler, Commissioner of Higher Education
Kimberly L. Henrie, Associate Commissioner for Planning, Finance and Facilities
Elizabeth Hitch, Associate Commissioner of Academic Affairs

Institutional Presidents Present
President Pershing, University of Utah
Noelle Cockett, Utah State University
Scott L Wyatt, Southern Utah University
President Carlston, Snow College
Matthew S. Holland, Utah Valley University
Richard B. Williams, Dixie State University
Deneece G. Huftalin, Salt Lake Community College
Norm Tarbox, Weber State University

Other Commissioner’s Office and institutional personnel were also present. The signed role is on file in the Commissioner’s Office.

Discussion – Space Utilization, Tuition and Fees
A discussion regarding Policy R571, Institutional Facilities Space Utilization, USHE space inventory and classroom utilization. Also discussed was tuition and fees including tuition strategy, annual tuition and fee increases, regional comparisons, and how tuition relates to institutional cost.

Vice Chair Harris H Simmons called the Committee of Whole meeting to order at 12:35 p.m. He opened and turn the time over to President Williams for the President’s Report.

President’s Report
President Williams started by saying Dixie has been focused on their strategic plan which is focused on six goals, but noted today he would be talking about the two Regent initiatives which are Completion and Mental Health. Goal one of the strategic goal is promoting student success and as a new university they have focused a lot on building the right infrastructure. He stated it begins with recruitment and over the last several years Dixie has had the largest freshman class and they have record enrollment. They are working on communication and making sure Dixie is communicating with students on what happens when you attend Dixie. Last year they started a pilot program that provided a mentor for each freshman, and with this program maintained 72% of those students. They also recognized students want more activities and in doing so incorporated more internships and active learning.

Last year the Regents charged the intuitions with addressing mental health issues. Dixie has made progress by developing a health and counseling center and hired their first mental health counselor. The center’s utilization numbers are off the charts and not only are they meeting mental health needs but they are able to meet medical needs as well. Dixie students are also invested in addressing mental health needs and they approved a fee increase to help offset co-payments for students. Another program the students got involved with for this first the time is the HOPE squad. And lastly the students got involved with Camp Kesem, a national program that supports children through and beyond their parent’s cancer.

Goal two is completion. Last year Dixie offered seven new bachelorette programs. This year they have their first graduate degree program approved, which is a masters of accounting. The Human Performance Center is under construction; this helps with the mental health and physical health initiatives. They are also focusing on the science and technology building and said this is a completion initiative because they don’t currently have enough room for labs and other needs. They also have the Innovation Plaza which is the hub for K-12 pipeline for technology, and have started a new class called entrepreneurial practicum, which is basically how to launch a business; this is active learning at its finest. President Williams said the last thing he wants to share relates to their goal of diversity inclusion. 27% of students on campus are minorities so they have focused on having 20 diversity events throughout the year. Students, faculty and staff, and the community are enjoying these events. They have held multiple workshops on how to prevent micro-aggressions, addressing and utilizing the diversity on campus. They have set three goals: Women hired into leadership roles – the baseline was 25%, the goal was to reach 31% last year and they reached 35%. Minorities in administration – the baseline was 5%, the goal was to reach 10% this year and they reached 12%. Minorities in faculty and staff – the baseline was 7%, the goal was to reach 10% this year and they reached 13%. They are embracing diversity and are excited about the progress on campus.

Resolution for George Emert – Regent Theurer shared comments regarding the resolution for George Emert. Regent Theurer made a motion to approve the resolution; the motion was seconded by Regent Jibson and the motion carried.

Resolution for President Charles A. Wight – Regent Marquardt shared comments regarding the resolution for President Wight. Regent Marquardt made a motion to approve the resolution; the motion was seconded by Regent Anderson and the motion carried.

Resolution for President Matthew S. Holland – Regent Barnes shared comments regarding the resolution for President Holland. Regent Barnes made a motion to approve the resolution; the motion was seconded by Regent Trujillo and the motion carried.

Resolution for President David W. Pershing – Regent Campbell shared comments regarding the resolution for President Pershing. Regent Campbell made a motion to approve the resolution; the motion was seconded by Regent Wright and the motion carried.

Consent Calendar (TAB A)
On a motion by Regent Wright, and seconded by Regent Jensen, the following items were approved on the Regents’ General Consent Calendar:

A. Minutes – Minutes of the Board meeting January 18, 2018, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah, January 19, 2018, Utah Valley University, Orem, Utah, February 9, 2018, Executive Committee Meeting, Board of Regents Office, Salt Lake City, Utah.
B. Grant Proposals
C. Awards
D. Academic items Received and Approved
E. Ratification of action taken by the Executive Committee on February 9, 2018 to approve revisions to Regent Policy R208, Resource and Review Teams, and Regent Policy R209, Evaluation of Presidents.

USHE – 2018 Legislative Session Report including Budget & Capital Update (TAB B)
Commissioner Buhler made note that Regents approved the budget in a new way this year; this allowed flexibility for presidents. Overall we received a 7.9% increase in ongoing funds and noted priority was on compensation for employees, workforce capacity, and growth. On the capital side it was a bit different. The priority was to fund projects approved last year by the legislature, and they did fully fund those projects. In addition they approved the second phase of Utah State’s Biology Building and funded a renovation for the football stadium at Snow College. They also provided intent language for the top Regent priorities. Also of significance is the approval of “Our Schools Now”.

Associate Commissioner Spencer Jenkins briefly highlighted a number of other bills including SB 104 – Talent Development and Retention Strategy, HB 370 – Suicide Prevention and Medical Examiner Provisions, SB 207 – Student Data protection Amendments, HB 349 – Higher Education Legacy Scholarship Amendments, SB 300 – Higher Education Modifications.

USHE – Proposed Tuition Adjustments for 2018-2019 (TAB C)
Commissioner Buhler noted we are proposing a first-tier tuition rate increase of 1.5 percent for all institutions. This reflects the compensation match from the legislature. Presidents may also bring forward a request for a second-tier increase; four institutions have proposed a second-tier increase. Associate Commissioner Kimberly Henrie noted Regents will be approving the first-tier and second-tier increase as one rate for each institution. She also noted there are five differential tuition increase requests being made, a removal of an earlier Board approved exception for Utah State University, and on online tuition and fees schedule for Dixie State University.

Vice Chair Simmons opened the floor for a public hearing on the proposed tuition increases. No comments were made and Vice Chair Simmons closed the public hearing.

Chair Campbell made a motion to approve as outlined in Tab C; the motion was seconded by Regent Jibson and the motion carried.

USHE – Proposed Fee Adjustments for 2018-2019 (TAB D)
Commissioner Buhler noted by Regent policy if a proposed fee increase exceeds the proposed first-tier tuition rate, institutions must provide evidence of student support; we have a number of these requests. Associate Commissioner Henrie stated she is confident that the processes were followed by the institutions and would recommend approval as outlined in Tab D. Regent Stoddard made a motion to approve as outlined in Tab D, including the amended adjustment to SUU fee’s schedule of an increase of $6 a year; the motion was seconded by Regent Wright and the motion carried.

Revision of Policy R120, Bylaws of the State Board of Regents (TAB E)
Commissioner Buhler noted as the legislature makes changes to statue, we need to update policy to comply with those changes. He also noted once a law is changed, we follow the law even if the policy has not been updated. There are no substantive changes. Regent Jensen made a motion to approve as outlined in Tab E; the motion was seconded by Regent Wright and the motion carried.

Revision of Policy R203, Search Committee Appointment and Function, and Regents’ Selection of Presidents (TAB F)
Commissioner Buhler noted that although we have already been following this law, this brings the policy in line with statue. The main change is the search committee is to be co-chaired by a Regent and the chair of the board of trustees, a candidate must have a two thirds vote from the committee to advance them to the Regents, and the Regents may only select a president from the finalists forwarded by the search committee. Regent Valdez made a motion to approve as outlined in Tab F; the motion was seconded by Regent Jones and the motion carried.

Appointment of Interim President at Weber State University effective May 1, 2018
Chair Campbell noted it is required that we appoint an interim president while the search for a new president of Weber State University continues. Chair Campbell moved to approve Norm Tarbox as the Interim President effective May 1, 2018; the motion was seconded by Regent Anderson and the motion carried.

Updates from Working Groups
Timely Completion: Regent Barnes noted they have continued to have presentations on campuses and are receiving tremendous feedback from students. They have identified barriers consistent across the campuses including: underprepared for college courses, financial, family life obligations, course scheduling, transfer difficulties, and failure to make a connection to the campus. They are looking at analytics and how they are implemented on campuses, guided pathways, graduation initiatives, peer-to-peer mentoring, incentive grants, and performance funding. They are looking at what the next steps should be and define what completion is.

Workforce and Research – Regent Marquardt noted the goal is to try and improve the services higher education provides to our growing economy. They have chosen to focus on two areas. The first is supply and demand. What are the degrees we are producing from each vocational area? Where are the jobs and where are the shortages? The second is developing pathways for students to get into the gap areas. This is a complicated mission that involves more than just higher education. The group had a presentation form the State Board of Education and learned they have a good system of beginning to involve students in public education, encouraging them to begin to think about career aptitude, interests, and start to get focused on a career. One of the biggest obstacles schools have is the ratio of counselors to students; the amount of time a student has with a counselor is very limited. One suggestion for the group is to focus on statewide transferability of stackable credentials. Building more partnerships with UTEC is another focus as well as reaching out to underrepresented groups.

Access & Affordability – Regent Jensen said the metric the group chose is to increase the percentage of Utahns who enroll in college within five years of high school graduation. They feel access is the larger topic; trying to get people to make the choice to enroll and succeed. With minority groups being the largest growing demographic in Utah, this makes affordability difficult. They have discussed discounts in the form of student aid and tuition waivers. Their time so far has been spent on affordability and the next meeting will be on access. They have identified barriers including: lack of career and college planning, difficulty navigating systems and processes in higher education, affordability, awareness and ability to apply for student aid. After their next meeting scheduled in April, they will identify one or two key initiatives that will be the most worth for the majority of students in the system. There may be a need to focus less on merit based aid and more on need based aid.

Chair Campbell asked for one, maybe two significant and measurable items be brought forward from the working groups at the May meeting.


New Century and Regents’ Scholarship Award Amounts for 2018-19 College Academic Year (TAB G)
Regent Theurer noted this is to approve amounts for the 2018-19 year. Julie Hartley, OCHE, noted these are both merit based awards and recommends they be approved at the full amount allowed by statue. For the New Century Scholarship it is $1,250 per semester for four semesters. The Regents’ Scholarship is a base award of $1000, if students meet the exemplary requirement they receive $1,250 per semester for four semesters. If they met the base award and contributed to a my529 savings account, they are eligible for up to an additional $400 in match per year. Regent Theurer made a motion to approve as outlined in Tab G; the motion was seconded by Regent Wright and the motion carried.


University of Utah – Series 2018 General Revenue Bond Issue (TAB H)
President Pershing noted this request is for the new housing facility, South Campus Student Housing and Dining Complex, and will provide 992 beds. This will be located on the main campus and is for up to $105,217,000 with an interest rate not to exceed 5.5%. Regent Jibson moved to approved as outlined in Tab H; the motion was seconded by Regent Jones and the motion carried.

University of Utah – Soccer and Lacrosse Field Non-State Funded Project (TAB I)
Robin Burr, Chief Design and Construction Officer University of Utah, noted the current soccer field is located at the proposed site for the new student housing and dining project. This provides the opportunity to move the soccer stadium to take advantage of space by the existing Dumke Softball Stadium. The work will take place in two phases and today’s request is for phase one, which is the relocation of the field, lights and infrastructure. The budget is $4,500,000 to be paid with non-state funds. Regent Wright made a motion to approve as outlined in Tab I; the motion was seconded by Regent Jensen and the motion carried.

Utah State University – Swenson House Non-State Funded Project (TAB J)
Dave Cowley, Vice President for Business and Finance Utah State University, noted this is to request approval to build the Swenson house, which is to honor May Swenson. May Swenson grew up in Logan, attended USU, and gain national recognition as a poet. The house will resemble Swenson’s childhood home. The house will serve the college of humanities and social sciences. The project is expected to cost $800,000 and will be paid using non-state funds. Regent Theurer moved to approve as outlined in Tab J; the motion was seconded by Regent Campbell and the motion carried.

Weber State University – Outdoor Recreation Center Non-State Funded Project (TAB K)
Norm Tarbox, Vice President for Administrative Services Weber State University, noted Weber is seeking authorization to construct a new Outdoor Recreation Building to accommodate student demand and provide a welcome center for prospective students. WSU has student support and this will not require a fee increase but will be funded with donations, current student fees and other non-appropriated funds. They are also seeking a 2 million dollar gift to complete the project. Regent Anderson made a motion to approve as outlined in Tab K; the motion was seconded by Regent Valdez and the motion carried.

Adoption of Policy R751, Institutional Facilities Space Utilization (TAB L)
Associate Commissioner Kimberly Henrie noted this item is dealing specifically with policy language. The recommendation is to delete the current policy in its entirety and advance the new R571 policy. There are four main elements: adopt a policy for annual reporting requirements; set standards with a caveat that they apply to fall and spring terms; continue to collect and monitor space utilization; and central scheduling. Regent Stoddard moved to delete the current Regent Policy R571, Capital Facilities Space Scheduling and Assignment and adopt Policy R571, Institutional Facilities Space Utilization in its place, effective immediately, with an additional clarification that the adopted utilization standards apply to Spring and Fall terms and main campuses; the motion was seconded by Regent Theurer and the motion carried.

University of Utah – Student Housing Lease Update (TAB M)
President Pershing noted this is to inform the Regents of a change in location. The new location is less than a block away located at 340 S 500 E. This is an information item only; no action was taken.

Snow College – Capital Facility Funding Update (TAB N)
President Carlston noted this is for 5 million to improve the football stadium. This will allow Snow College to address locker rooms, fitness classroom, and restrooms. This is an information item only; no action was taken.

USHE – Regent Audit Subcommittee Annual Report (TAB O)
Regent Marquardt noted that he, Regent Anderson, Barnes, and Jensen met with the audit chairs from each institution. This system is doing very well, each institution has an assessment tool to identify where their greatest risks are. These help determine which audits will take place in the next year. There has been a new trend in the last few years to increase or expand the risk assessment to include enterprise risk analysis. Several models are being develop to look at risk of shooters, environmental, and sexual harassment. In the past each institution has been a silo effort of people working independently and not having communication across institutions and that has changed. Now there are regular meetings with internal auditors from the institutions and they share best practices, problems, and concerns. The commissioner’s staff has implemented training for all institutions. Overall the system is working well. He noted the biggest concern for institutions is in the IT area. To address this, the chief information officers at each institution are meeting as a group and performing audits across the system, with each institution having an audit every other year. The team comes in and tries to hack into every system, finding the integrity of passwords and is having a positive result. President Huftalin asked about training for institutions and presidents. Associate Commissioner Henrie said OCHE is starting this training and has visited four of the eight institutions. OCHE is looking at additional ways to help institutions. Vice Chair Simmons said there are two types of problems, external and internal, and maybe this is something we should look into to. Commissioner Buhler indicated this may be something to address during the July combined Regent/Trustee meeting. Chair Campbell said we have requested funding from the legislature for years to increase data security and it has not been funded. He is interested in knowing from presidents how they are going to address this issue. President Pershing said he believes, for all presidents, this is the issue they need to grabble with. He said we are building beautiful buildings but inside those buildings are old switches and gears that in some cases are 20 years old and it needs to be addressed. This is an information item only; no action was taken.

USHE – Review of 2017 Financial Statements (TAB P)
Regent Stoddard noted as part of the ongoing review of the institutions fiscal health, the Finance and Facilities Committee reviewed the 2017 Annual Audited Financial Statements. Overall, the FY 2017 audited financials support the fact that USHE institutions are financially strong and are meeting industry standards for key financial ratios. They also met with the University of Utah for a budget deep dive. This is an information item only; no action was taken.

USHE – Debt Ratio Analysis (TAB Q)
Regent Stoddard noted staff provided the annual debt ratio report for the system institutions for FY 2017. Similar to last year, Snow College and Dixie State University had viability ratios below the expected standard. Both institutions are actively working on ways to improve their viability ratio for future reports. There were no other concerns or issued raised. This is an information item only; no action was taken.

USHE – Annual Money Management Report for the Fiscal Year ending June 30, 2017 (TAB R)
Regent Stoddard noted annually the Board is required to compile a summary report regarding all investment activities to the Governor and Legislature. This report meets that requirement. This is an information item only; no action was taken.

USHE – Fall 2017 & Spring 2018 Enrollment Report (TAB S)
Regent Stoddard noted the updated enrollment reports for Fall 2017 end-of-term and Spring 2018 third week were shared with the committee. Our system continues to grow as we expect and our student Headcount and FTE numbers are up in both Fall and Spring.

USHE – Utah State University Bond Final Details (TAB T)
Regent Stoddard noted as required by Regent Policy, USHE staff provided an update on the final bond issuance details for the USU industrial bond approved at the January Board meeting.

Regent Stoddard motioned to move into executive session for the sole purpose of discussing the character, professional competence, or physical or mental health of individuals. The motion was seconded by Regent Valdez and the motion carried.

The meeting adjourned at 3:33 p.m.