MEMPHIS – Characterized as both progressive and realistic, the University of Tennessee Board of Trustees approved the 2023-2028 strategic plan of the UT Health Science Center (UTHSC) during its annual meeting held in Memphis.
Under the leadership of Chancellor Peter Buckley, MD, who was approved as chancellor in December 2021, UTHSC has made significant gains, including:
- Opening of the new $45 million Delta Dental of Tennessee building, a 68,000-square-foot building to train Tennessee’s dental workforce and treat more patients located in the Mid-South region of the state.
- The College of Pharmacy moving up six spots to a No. 6 ranking in annual research funding from the National Institutes of Health.
- $53 million investment from the Tennessee Department of Health over the next five years for the Healthy Smiles Initiative, a multipronged approach to tackling the current shortage of dentists in Tennessee and improving health across the state by making dental care more readily available.
“The impact that Chancellor Buckley has had in such a short period of time is inspiring,” UT Board of Trustees Chairman John Compton said. “His leadership is yielding tremendous results in Memphis and across the state, and will continue to do so in the years to come.”
UTHSC remains the largest educator of health care professionals in the state, and trains 75% of Tennessee’s dentists. It has four, full clinical campuses in Memphis, Nashville, Chattanooga and Knoxville, and 888 educational and clinical training sites across Tennessee.
UTHSC’s strategic plan establishes its commitment to the goals of:
- Strengthening partnerships to engage communities
- Promoting quality interprofessional education
- Growing research, innovation, and entrepreneurship
- Expanding quality care across Tennessee
- Creating an environment of success for all
The board of trustees also approved the FY 2023-24 operating budget, which included modest tuition and mandatory fee increases at campuses. On average, the rise in cost represents a 1% increase per year during the past five years. The net increase at each campus ranges from 0 to 3 percent, which remain within the up to 3% range set by the Tennessee Higher Education Commission.
“Universities and colleges are wrestling with rising inflation, and regrettably UT is no different,” UT System President Randy Boyd said. “As fiduciaries and stewards of the University, the decision to judiciously increase tuition and fees at our campuses was a measure our campuses considered after much thought and consideration to how it would impact students and families.
“We are committed to affordable access and helping our students achieve their dream of obtaining an undergraduate degree,” Boyd continued. “The UT Promise scholarship program remains critical in helping alleviate some of the financial burden by covering the last-dollar amount for students whose annual family household income is under $60,000. As a result of this and other scholarship offerings, more than 50% of UT students graduate completely debt-free.”
To view campus-by-campus tuition information, as well as other operating budget information, please click here.
Also during the meeting, trustees approved amended project costs for both Lindsey Nelson Stadium and Neyland Stadium renovations.
During the President’s Report, Boyd reviewed the UT Foundation’s fund-raising year, securing more than $327 million in commitments and surpassing last year’s final total of $314 million. Boyd also highlighted the recent announcement from the National Science Foundation and its $18 million investment in UT Knoxville’s Center for Advanced Materials and Manufacturing, which will use artificial intelligence to better understand and design quantum materials and systems.
In other business, trustees approved:
- Capital project funding requests
- Revisions to faculty handbooks (UT Health Science Center and UT Knoxville)
- Annual presidential performance review
Archived video of the committee and full board meetings can be accessed at https://trustees.tennessee.edu/.
The University of Tennessee is a statewide system of higher education with campuses in Knoxville, Chattanooga, Martin, Memphis and Pulaski; the UT Institute of Agriculture with a presence in every Tennessee county; and the statewide Institute for Public Service. The UT System manages Oak Ridge National Laboratory through its UT-Battelle partnership; enrolls about 54,000 students statewide; produces about 13,000 new graduates every year; and represents more than 433,000 alumni around the world.
Media resources can be accessed at https://news.tennessee.edu/board-of-trustees-june-2023/
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505 Summer Place, UT Tower, Knoxville, TN 37902