President Bradley names affordability steering committee

October 19, 2011

Indiana State University President Dan Bradley today moved forward on plans for a Task Force on Affordability by appointing nine campus leaders to a steering committee. The panel includes four subcommittee chairs to specifically examine costs in the areas of instruction, books and supplies, facilities and housing and dining.

"I have asked the chairs to consider any possible means of controlling costs while maintaining quality but to focus especially on long-term, systemic issues that will have an ongoing effect on affordability," Bradley said in a message to faculty and staff. He said the steering committee will collect recommendations from the subcommittees and make recommendations by the end of January.

"This will not be an easy challenge to meet, but I am confident that the task force will uncover some options that will have a meaningful impact," Bradley said.

Subcommittees and their chairs include:

• Instruction - John Murray, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. This subcommittee will look at instructional delivery modes, class sizes, use of part-time and special purpose faculty, faculty productivity levels and other issues impacting the cost of instruction.
• Books and supplies - Bob Guell, professor of economics. This panel will explore the potential of electronic textbooks, expanded textbook rental programs and other methods of controlling the costs of instructional materials.
• Facilities - Diann McKee vice president for business affairs and finance. This subcommittee will explore such areas as space utilization, cost of facilities maintenance and upkeep and utilities.
• Housing and Dining - John Beacon, vice president for enrollment management, marketing and communications. This group will look into the costs students incur for housing and food, including the continuation of a plan to upgrade student housing while keeping it affordable.

Bradley called on faculty and staff who have ideas for saving money to forward them to the appropriate subcommittee chair.

Each subcommittee will include representatives from the Faculty Senate, the Staff Council and Student Government Association. Individuals with expertise related to these areas will serve as ex-officio members of the subcommittees, Bradley said.

In addition to the subcommittee chairs, the Task Force steering committee will include Faculty Senate President Steven Lamb, Staff Council President Kelly Hall and Student Government Association President Nick Utterback as well as Jack Maynard, university provost and vice president for academic affairs, and Carmen Tillery, vice president for student affairs and dean of students. Maynard will chair the steering committee.

A public website is being created to share information about the work of the steering committee and subcommittees. Once recommendations are received, those judged ready for implementation will become initiatives within the university's five-year strategic plan, Bradley said, while any recommendations needing further study will be developed separately.

"This is an exciting, albeit challenging, time at Indiana State University," Bradley said. "The ability to provide a quality higher educational experience at an affordable cost is instrumental to our future. It is also essential to advancing the state and national goals of improving the education level of our workforce and maintaining the leadership role the United States has in the worldwide economy."

Photo: http://isuphoto.smugmug.com/Events/2011-Fall-Address/i-BwV7q4H/0/D/100511presidentsfalladdress-D.jpg - Affordability was a major theme of Indiana State University President Dan Bradley's Oct. 5 Fall Address to faculty, staff and students. (ISU/Tony Campbell)

Media contact: Dave Taylor, media relations director, Office of Communications and Marketing, Indiana State University, 812-237-3743 or dave.taylor@indstate.edu