CONTACT: STEVE PARROTT
100 Jessup Hall
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 335-0552; fax (319) 335-0558
Release: Sept. 11, 2001
UI announces plan to revitalize College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
Revitalizing the University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
(CLAS) is the goal of an initiative that would be funded with a portion of
the revenue from a tuition increase for the 2002-03 academic year. The CLAS
enrolls 85 percent of the UIs undergraduates and offers crucial foundational
courses to students in all undergraduate colleges, including business, education,
engineering, nursing and pharmacy.
The Board of Regents, State of Iowa, will get a first look at the initiative
during its meeting Sept. 12 and 13 in Iowa City, when tuition and fees will
The proposal has two primary components:
Hiring additional faculty over the next four years. The goal is to
increase the number of CLAS faculty to about 700. Between 1994 and 2000, CLAS
faculty size dropped by 25 positions, from 668 to 643. That reduction came
even as the number of UI undergraduate students rose.
Additional funds to support faculty recruitment, to equip faculty
laboratories for research and teaching, and to renew instructional equipment
in other areas of the CLAS.
The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences has put forward a compelling
plan to reinvigorate departments in urgent need of additional faculty lines
to support student needs and interests, said UI President Mary Sue Coleman.
Even in these austere times, we cannot lose sight of our responsibility
to provide students with the quality of education they deserve.
Thoughtful decision-making with respect to new tuition revenues has
never been more critical, Coleman noted. While we all hope that
the state budget picture will improve for the upcoming year, we must plan
realistically and are doing so.
However, our ability to move forward to achieve our goals and aspirations
is absolutely contingent upon the underlying base of state support,
she added. Without our state partnership, we will neither be able to
advance in meeting the needs of our students nor sustain what the university
Rebuilding the number of faculty will benefit all students, CLAS officials
said. For example, in introductory chemistry courses, which are required for
many majors, the initiative would greatly increase the percentage of credit
hours taught by tenure and tenure-track faculty.
In heavily enrolled majors, departments would be able to offer a wider variety
of intermediate and advanced courses and could alleviate bottlenecks in progress
In restricted-access majors, such as communication studies and journalism
and mass communication, more students would be able to declare the major.
Class sizes in general education courses, which were increased by 10 to 15
percent to respond to this years budget cuts, could be restored.
In addition to supporting the plan to revitalize the CLAS, the university
will invest new tuition and fee revenue as follows:
Student financial aid will be maintained at 16 percent of budgeted
Earmarked tuition surcharges and fee revenues will be used only for
the specific programs and projects for which they are proposed. The surcharges
affect several of the UIs professional colleges. Among the fees proposed
for increases are the student health fee, mandatory computer fee, the student
services fee that funds CAMBUS, and the student union fee.
Increases in tuition revenue from growth in enrollment will be used
to serve additional students by providing adequate course sections, academic
counseling, and other services.
The increase in tuition will also cover increases in costs attributable
to inflation, such as energy costs.