Board of Trustees actions: July 8-9, 2004

Penn State's Board of Trustees met on Thursday-Friday, July 8-9, 2004, on Penn State's University Park campus. The following items were presented to the board for action or informational purposes:

Penn State Board of Trustees meets; President Spanier's remarks
Penn State's Board of Trustees begins its regular, bi-monthly meeting today (July 8) on the University Park campus. Meetings will continue through Friday. In his opening remarks to the board, President Graham B. Spanier reflected on the University's 150-year history as Penn State prepares to kickoff a year-long celebration of its sesquicentennial. He also touched on recent clinical successes at the Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, notable faculty and student-athlete accomplishments, and recent philanthropy activities in support of the University.
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Trustees approve $2.79 billion budget for 2004-05
Penn State will operate with a budget of nearly $2.79 billion in 2004-05 under a comprehensive plan endorsed today (July 9) by the University's Board of Trustees. The budget reflects a slightly higher than expected state appropriation increase of 3 percent, or $9.335 million over last year's funding level for a total 2004-05 appropriation of nearly $317.2 million. As a result, the University is able to moderate necessary tuition increases, provide funds for a select group of strategic investments, and continue the high priority on faculty and staff salary increases. "This small gain is a step in the right direction for Penn State, and will help to offset some of the significant cost increases the University faces over a broad range of categories -- from health benefits to library materials to technology to building maintenance and security," said Penn State President Graham B. Spanier.
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Penn State sets base tuition increase at 6.6 percent for 2004-05 academic year
Penn State will increase its base tuition by 6.6 percent for in-state students -- $306 per semester at University Park -- for the 2004-05 academic year, with slightly lower percentage increases applied at other campuses and for out-of-state students. The tuition for out-of-state students, whose tuition is expected to cover the entire cost of education, will increase by 4.9 percent. This increase, required to offset inflationary pressures and rising costs specific to higher education, is Penn State's lowest percentage increase in recent years due to the 13th straight year of aggressive internal cost reductions and the end of three-straight years of state appropriation cuts.
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Task force continues to identify cost savings for PSU, will ease tuition increase
Penn State has identified $6.5 million in budget reductions and in non-tuition income enhancements for the University's 2004-05 budget, the latest step in an ongoing process to further streamline the efficiency of the University's administrative, academic, and outreach functions. This aggressive internal cost savings effort will directly benefit students in the form of a tuition increase avoidance of 1.1 percent -- or more than $100 per year for all full-time students. The University has recycled $113 million since 1992-93 and has moved most of these funds from administrative to academic functions.
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Board learns students' health in good hands
The majority of Penn State students appear to be very satisfied with the University's medical and psychological health services, reported Vicky Triponey, vice president for student affairs, at Penn State's Board of Trustees meeting today (July 9) on the University Park campus. Informational presentations by Margaret Spear, director of University Health Services (UHS), and Dennis Heitzmann, director of the Center for Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS), provided specifics about the University's efforts to address and improve students' physiological and psychological well-being.
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Smeal College proposes name change to better reflect business education mission
To better reflect the mission of business education at Penn State's University Park campus, the University's Board of Trustees today (July 9) approved a recommended name change for the Smeal College of Business Administration. The new name will be the Smeal College of Business. "We've recommended that the word 'administration' be dropped from our name because it no longer reflects the essence of business education and leadership," said Judy Olian, dean of the college. "Business education is about pro-active leadership and in-depth analytical skills in the various business disciplines. The term 'administration' is less apt today given the complexity of business practices and the competitiveness of business markets."
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Trustees approve final plans for new Food Science Building, Creamery
In a move to help the food processing and manufacturing industry in the state and throughout the nation to better meet its needs for well-educated food science students and state-of-the-art facilities for research and workforce training, Penn State's Board of Trustees today (July 9) approved final plans for the new Food Science Building, which will include the new Berkey Creamery, on the University Park campus. In other action, the trustees approved the appointment of an architect for the planned Academic Commons at Penn State Wilkes-Barre and the purchase of a small property adjoining Penn State Mont Alto.
For an artist's rendering of the Food Science Building, visit
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University sells Oak Hall farmland for use as community park
Penn State's Board of Trustees today (July 9) approved the sale of nearly 75.5 acres in College Township to the Centre Region Council of Governments for use as community play fields. The land consists of two adjacent parcels currently used for farming in Oak Hall, at the base of Mount Nittany along the Route 322 Bypass, and includes a house. The 75.44 acres will be sold for $448,500 -- the same price the University paid for the acreage in 1999. A new park on the site could include facilities for soccer, baseball, basketball and tennis, as well as picnic and pavilion areas.
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Eckel, Peechatka re-elected to agricultural law resource and reference center board
Keith W. Eckel and Walter N. Peechatka, both members of Penn State's Board of Trustees, were each re-elected today (July 9) to serve an additional one-year term as a director of the Agricultural Law Resource and Reference Center of The Dickinson School of Law. The center, established following the merger of The Dickinson School of Law with Penn State, is designed to provide the highest-quality educational programs, information and materials to those involved or interested in the agricultural industry. It is a collaboration between the law school and the University's College of Agricultural Sciences, and is funded in part by the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture.
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Penn State Board of Trustees announces newest member
George T. Henning Jr. was formally introduced as the newest member of Penn State's Board of Trustees during the Board's meeting on the University Park campus today (July 9). Henning was elected by alumni to serve a three-year term that began on July 1. After receiving his bachelor of arts degree from Penn State in 1963, Henning went on to earn an MBA from Harvard University in 1965. He served as an executive at four publicly traded companies and held leadership positions for more than 50 corporations and foundations. In 2001, he retired as vice president and chief financial officer of LTV Steel.Read the full story at

Robinson awarded the rank of trustee emeritus
Barry K. Robinson, a practicing attorney and former member of the Board of Trustees, today (July 9) was awarded the rank of trustee emeritus in recognition of his meritorious service as a board member for 15 years. Although retired from voting and serving as officers, Penn State's trustee emeriti continue to serve on the board as their schedules permit. "Barry Robinson has been a hard-working and dedicated member of our board, and we are very pleased that he will continue to share his advice and expertise with Penn State in the years ahead," said Cynthia A. Baldwin, chair of the Board of Trustees.
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Information on undergraduate and graduate program changes
For information on undergraduate and graduate program changes presented to the Penn State Board of Trustees, go to

Last Updated March 19, 2009