Thursday, June 26, 2014

Update Regarding the State Budget from President Sullivan

Two important points:
  • "Classified staff will not be eligible for a salary adjustment because any such increase must be authorized by the state, and that authorization was also removed from the budget."
  • "We have decided to delay the effective date of faculty and staff salary increases from July to October 1 of this year."

Full text of President Sullivan's Email:

Dear U.Va. Colleagues:

I write to provide an update on the budget for the Commonwealth of Virginia and its implications for the University's budget for the 2014-15 fiscal year. The original state budget introduced last year by Governor McDonnell would have added $9.39 million to the Academic Division's general fund appropriation.  In recent weeks, while the General Assembly was deadlocked in an impasse over the budget, we learned that Virginia is facing a budget shortfall estimated at $350 million for the fiscal year that will end June 30, with a more significant shortfall projected for the 2014-16 biennium.

Largely because of the projected shortfall, the General Assembly last week submitted a revised budget to Governor McAuliffe that will add only $1.19 million to the University's general fund appropriation. The Governor has approved this budget.

One change to the original budget removed the unrestricted appropriations for salary adjustments and performance funding ($5.31 million). This means that our planned 4.75% merit salary increase pool for teaching and research faculty and the 3% merit increase pool for administrative and professional faculty and University staff must now be funded strictly from University resources. Classified staff will not be eligible for a salary adjustment because any such increase must be authorized by the state, and that authorization was also removed from the budget. A more detailed description of the budgetary changes appears at

Let me reassure you that these developments with the state budget do not diminish our long-term commitment to improve salaries for U.Va. faculty and staff. Last year, the Board of Visitors approved a four-year plan regarding faculty salaries, with the goal of achieving an average faculty salary within the top 20 AAU institutions by 2017. We also are committed to achieving market-level rates in our staff compensation. 

To accomplish these goals while navigating this period of uncertainty, we have decided to delay the effective date of faculty and staff salary increases from July to October 1 of this year. This delay will ensure the financial stability of the University following reduced appropriations, while sustaining our commitment to competitive faculty and staff compensation as one of our top institutional priorities.

While the state budget has fluctuated over the years, the loyalty of our faculty and staff has remained steadfast. I am very grateful for your dedication, and for the many ways in which you contribute to the success of this great University.

Very truly yours,

Teresa A. Sullivan


President Sullivan approved distribution of this message.

Peak Season in Student Financial Services

July marks the beginning of peak activity in SFS.  If you see some of your friends and colleagues from SFS looking a little weary in the coming months, read on to find out why!

From the start of July through Labor Day, the SFS Contact Center handles approximately 35% of its annual total of student and parent contacts (which number about 125,000 per year!).  These come as phone calls, emails, faxes, Twitter and Facebook posts, and walk-ins to Carruthers Hall.  SFS Administration also have the chance to speak at Summer Orientation with the thousands of parents and students who come to our sessions.

Student Accounts is hard at work with billing 3rd-party contracts, testing that tuition and fees for Fall are calculating correctly in the Student Information System, handling Veteran's Benefits for our families who have them, and helping our families understand how they can budget their payments for the coming term.  Student Accounts also has to coordinate the loading of charges for housing and dining as well as to keep up with the regular billing we do on behalf of departments such as the Bookstore, Parking and Transportation, and Student Health.

Financial Aid is completing all the financial aid awards it possibly can for undergraduate students prior to the creation of the Fall term statements on July 21.  Graduate students need awarding too, and that is a sometimes tricky coordination with Schools and Departments who need to assign their own awards to students before we do our part.

Our Loans group is processing the thousands of requests for Direct Parent PLUS Loans and private education loans, all of them prior to the billing due date of August 20th.

Scholarships are processing and assigning thousands of private and institutional scholarships during this period as well.  As with financial aid awards, the more that are complete and on the student's account prior to the term statement, the more helpful it is for the student and their family.

Finally, Cashiering is gearing up for the last minute deluge of personal checks and wire transfers that we see from late-July through the start of the Fall term.

Behind the scenes our ITS and Administrative staff help keep us moving along in ways big and small.

And then Labor Day comes, and we all catch our breath for a few minutes before starting the planning process all over again for the 2015-2016 academic year!

Employee Updates for The Office of the University Comptroller and Student Financial Services

Office of the University Comptroller

Karyn Tancredi has accepted the position of Director of Financial Reporting in Financial Operations & University Reporting. She is a CPA and in addition to her public accounting career, she brings with her 8+ years as the Director of Financial Reporting at the University of Richmond and 2+ years as the Director of Financial Reporting with Hanover County. We are very excited to have Karyn join our team starting on July 14.

Student Financial Services

Jeanie Sampson-Giles has accepted the position of Loan Program Administrator in Student Financial Services.  Prior to this, Jeanie had served for 2 years as the Manager of Student Accounts and for 8 years as Supervisor of Student Accounts.  We are happy that as Jeanie takes on new challenges she will remain an important member of our team in SFS!

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Welcoming Summer Interns!

In partnership with the McIntire School of Commerce, the University Financial Area had five new members start this week. Please join us in welcoming these summer additions.


Yafei Zhang graduated from Pennsylvania State University, Smeal College of Business in May prior to moving to Charlottesville to work with Lynne Schwar. She will matriculate into McIntire’s Accounting program this fall.

Managerial Reporting
Lubna Al-Nsour graduated from UVa in 2013 and spent the following year with Amtrak in Washington, D.C. She is working with Judy and new hire Andrew Yeung on Data Stewardship prior matriculating into the Financial Services program at McIntire in the fall.

Annie Helbling just moved to Charlottesville after graduating from Duke University in May and is working with Jessica Rafter in the Project Management Office. She will matriculate at McIntire in Marketing and Management this fall.

Brandan Hummell is a recent UVa graduate and will matriculate to the McIntire School of Commerce Marketing and Management program in the fall. He is working with Mark Anderson and new hire Tom Kim on Hyperion Profitability and Cost Management and Cost of Education (HPCM/COE).

Joseph Ripple is new to the area after graduating from Marquette University. He is working with Julie Richardson this summer before matriculating into McIntire’s Financial Services track in the fall.

Who Funds Sponsored Programs?

The Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP), on behalf of the responsible scientists/Principal Investigators (PIs) and in the name of the Rector and Visitors of the University, accepts extramural (external) funding agreements from many different sponsors/sources. The majority of the university’s funding comes from several different Federal agencies. These agencies include, our largest sponsor, The Department of Health and Human Services, as related to the many areas of medical research conducted at UVA. The National Science Foundation, The Department of Education and various sub agencies within the Department of Defense (Army, Navy, etc.) also provide funding. There are many other Federal sponsors not named in this article that support our research, instruction, clinical and university service missions. In addition, we receive funding from the Commonwealth of Virginia, foundations, industry and ‘flow- through’ agreements from other universities. Another important part of the sponsored funding portfolio is for clinical trials.

As Fiscal Year 2014 winds down, UVA has received $260.4 million in sponsored funding.

If you are interested in knowing more about the funding awarded to the University, please go to the OSP home page and navigate to the "FY Reports" drop-down menu in the banner!

OSP: Employee Updates & Achievements

New ‘Temp’ Employees:
Andrea Tucker – assisting with reception and front desk operations OSP

Staff Achievements:
Sharon Brooks – reappointed to serve 2nd three-year term on the Research Administrators Certification Council Board (RACC)
Sharon Brooks – now holds the professional designation of Certified Financial Research Administration (CFRA)
Christine Carrizosa – now holds the professional designation of Certified Research Administrator (CRA)
Yuan (Vivian) Xue - now holds the professional designation of Certified Research Administrator (CRA)

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Introducing: The Managerial Reporting Project

First, we’d like to introduce ourselves. We’re The Managerial Reporting Project, nice to meet you! We get asked frequently “What is the Managerial Reporting Project?” Our world at the University, and the data and information around it, are growing. How we harness and use that data more effectively will contribute to our continued success. Managerial Reporting is here to further our efforts in enabling more accurate, consistent and reliable data as well as implement additional robust, usable, and effective decision support applications and reporting to support more robust financial planning, analysis and decision making at multiple levels. Read more about our mission and goals by clicking here.

We have been busy, busy bees lately as our Orange Data and Process Improvement teams begin their work, the Hyperion Cost of Education (COE)/ University Financial Model (UFM) reporting solution moves forward, and our team continues to grow. However, we of course find to time bask in the sun with our customized project sunglasses, because the future is ever so bright.

Our Orange Data and Process Improvement teams are underway after the May 15 Kickoff event where people from around grounds came together to meet their team members, learn about the Orange Team process, and score the super cool sunglasses pictured above. We had over 50 people attend the kickoff, and when asked to rate their experience on a scale of 1-5, gave overall session value a 4 ,and the ability to bond and meet team members a 4.5. Teams are now in the process of meeting. These team meetings have had been full of some wonderful initial dialogue, congratulations Orange Teams on an excellent start. We appreciate everyone’s ongoing participation and will continue to work with teams to expand and refine their overall charge and goals. If you’re interested in joining a team to improve data and processes across the University, there’s still time to join, contact Jessica Rafter at to get more information and connected to a team.

On another front, Hyperion Profitability Cost Management (HPCM), the reporting solution that will be used to report on the COE/UFM, has made significant progress on the build of the development environment.

The most exciting news is left for last; our team has grown by one! Mark Anderson is now our HPCM System Administrator. As part of the core project team he will be the leader of the functional design and application support for the launch of the HPCM-COE Application. Please join me in welcoming Mark.

BOV Approves 2014-15 Budget

The University of Virginia Board of Visitors unanimously approved the 2015 fiscal year budget, advancing institutional priorities that will help sustain the University’s excellence through the start of its third century.

The $2.79 billion budget reflects U.Va. strategic plan priorities: strengthening student advising and career services, bolstering faculty and staff compensation, ensuring quality health care and patient safety, and maintaining the commitment to provide high-achieving students access to the University without consideration of their ability to pay.

Read more at UVA Today.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Four New Members Appointed to BOV

Gov. Terry McAuliffe today announced the appointment of four new members of the University of Virginia Board of Visitors.

Dr. L.D. Britt of Suffolk, Frank M. “Rusty” Conner III of Alexandria, Barbara J. Fried of Crozet and John Granger Macfarlane III of Darien, Conn. and Crozet will begin four-year terms July 1.

Read the full article at UVA Today.

SFS: What's Keeping Us Busy

Student Financial Services is in the thick of creating Official financial aid awards for undergraduate and many graduate students for the 2014-2015 academic year. We have already sent award letters to over 3,900 admitted applicants and approximately 2,000 returning students.

In support of these awarding efforts, SFS now offers students the ability to upload electronic documents directly through their SIS Student Center. This functionality allows us to “outsource” some of the elements of the financial aid organizing process and dramatically condenses the time frame for receiving and validating financial aid documents for review by our financial aid administrators. A process that used to take upwards of 5 minutes can now be completed in as little as 10-15 seconds. How’s that for operational excellence! Not only is this an operations win for SFS, it removes barriers for the people we serve and allows them a simple and convenient way to complete their financial aid tasks.

As we roll through the warming spring months, our efforts will expand to include processing outside scholarships, departmental awarding (mainly for graduate students) and eventually billing students and 3rd-party payers for the Fall 2014 term in mid-July.

OSP: What's Keeping Us Busy

During President Obama's first term, there was an Executive Order that required the federal government to reduce administrative burdens on recipients of federal funds while increasing transparency and oversight in grant making and management process/practice. This has become known as the Federal Grant Reform Initiative.

Starting in February of 2013 and through a series of publications allowing for public comments on proposed guidance, we have finally been provided the new 'Uniform Guidance' regulatory document. This document combined eight (8) previous circulars into one. The new guidance will be formally implemented on December 26, 2014.

OSP is now involved in and leading the review and assessment of this guidance to determine impact or change to current operations and management positions. This is a wide sweeping document that will address not only research costing and administration but also procurement, fringe rates, indirect cost rates and more.

Rankings Noise

What would it take for a well-regarded institution -- such as the University of Rochester, and a few dozen more like it -- to be among U.S. News & World Report’s top 20 national universities? Hundreds of millions of dollars and a prayer, according a new peer-reviewed paper co-written by a former Rochester provost and his staff.

The study, published by the journal Research in Higher Education, argues that small movements in the rankings are simply “noise” and that any kind of sustained upward movement is both immensely expensive and nearly impossible.

Read the full article at Inside Higher Ed.