Strategic Budget Feedback
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Strategic Budget Feedback

Thank you to everyone who submitted the following strategic budget input.

Using the College’s budget principles, the Cabinet and management team reviewed the feedback from our college community from February 13, 2012 through March 22, 2012. The Cabinet and management team categorized the budget recommendations into either a revenue generation measure or into one of three cost saving measures. The cost saving measures were

  1. Essential to our core values, but need to improve their efficiencies and effectiveness.
  2. Essential to our core values, but different service model needed to reduce costs.
  3. Potential restructuring or targeted reductions.

The Cabinet also determined whether or not the budget recommendations could be completed in the:

  1. Short-term (2013)
  2. Future (2014 and Beyond)

The College is currently employing some of the recommendations proposed. The cabinet has elected not to pursue some budget recommendations because of cost, contractual agreements, conflicts with state statute, MnSCU policy, Saint Paul College policy or procedure, or the budget suggestion has been tried in the past, but operational costs outweighed the benefits.

For detailed information about how your feedback was categorized, please see the following:

CollegeCommunityBudgetSuggestions_Short-Term_FY2013.pdf

CollegeCommunityBudgetSuggestions_Future_FY2014-2015.pdf

CollegeCommunityBudgetSuggestions_CabinetElectedNotToPursue.pdf

Budget Recommendations Implementation Mid-Year Progress Update
For the 2012-2013 academic year, one of President Dastmozd’s goals is to implement 50% of the short-term suggestions and complete further review and planning for 33% of the medium-term suggestions created with campus community input obtained during last year’s strategic budgeting alignment process. For a list of budget suggestions the College will implement and research this academic year, please see Budget Suggestions Implementation.

Revenue Generation Comments

Academic Programs / Educational Offerings

  1. Create cookbooks - the food here is good!
  2. Install solar panels on the roofs of all college buildings. The extra energy produced can be sold back to excel energy. Increase recycling awareness at the college.
  3. New locker system ~ if these lockers are rented out at $20 per semester or $20 per year and they book out fast having smaller thinner ones and more of them would be nice or a variety of sizes at differing costs. A system like the one found at the Mall of America would be nice where you have a digital locker system and maybe pay 25 cents an hour and everyone can buy some sort of refillable locker card that swipes at the locker terminal and or set it up for semester rentals as well.
  4. Determine profit potential of additional hours for the coffee outlet near the cafeteria.
  5. Expand service offerings by students near graduation: Auto Service & Repair, Technology, Graphics, etc.
  6. Move Esthetics and Yoga and Massage up to the church. Add hydrotherapy, which might be as easy as a shower, a hydro tub and a Vichy shower. This could all be in one wet room. Make Esthetics clinic and massage clinic area more sound proof or at least dim the sound. Aveda makes enough money in their student clinics to support their school on clinic alone. They still charge a huge tuition. Open up on Saturdays and evenings. Personal training and Yoga teachers’ trainees could all lead classes that would be open to the public. Charge the public for those classes.
  7. Offer catering on a website.
  8. Offer gift certificates (online) to grill, massage services, continuing ed, bookstore, etc. (Figures vary, but approx. 10% are typically not redeemed. Almost all profit. And, purchases tend to exceed gift card value.)
  9. Our clinics would be full if we could be open when the clientele is more available. We could offer birthday parties, bachelorette parties, couples massage and spa packages etc. Market it just like a spa. The spa business is growing and makes lots of money.
  10. Any pet related (i.e., dog training, pet massage, pet grooming) area. $50 billion per year industry and growing. Not much local to assist people in skill acquisition.
  11. Doula Certification course
  12. Nutrition certificate and/or AAS. Also promote classes in this area in Continuing Education.
  13. Parenting course through Cont. Ed.
  14. Offer wine and cooking classes through Continuing Ed. You've got all the resources and the competition (Byerly's, Cooks of Crocus Hill) make pretty good money doing this.
  15. Open the City View Grille early enough in the evening that students can dine there. I have night classes and would eat there but I can't if I want to get to class on time.
  16. PSEO – Outreach - Do an outreach with public local high schools. Have a recruiter meet with students and teachers at the high schools with the idea to do more with PSEO.
  17. Student Mentors - In online classes and possibly in PSEO outreach have mentor/tutors meet students at the high school and help PSEO students navigate the D2L classes. This may be a student mentor meaning a SPC student who may be able to help with this during at least the first part of the semester. Or this task may be part of a retention position. Some PSOE students have difficulty in online classes to get engaged early in the semester. Have a tutor/mentor show up at the high school and work with them in working with the schedule, navigation and understanding how to accomplish the required tasks and event in the online class. Hopefully this could increase PSEO registration and retention of these students when they graduate.
  18. Push to increase online participation - See if we can increase the online participation levels and number of classes in a push to increase enrollment.
  19. Consider new classes in Middle East – Immigration Studies - Sustainability - Middle East Politics – Political Science, East African History (Possibly an emphasis on Ethiopia, Somalia, Kenya), Qur’an Philosophy (not sure but you get the idea, Economics of the Middle East (Colonization of Egypt, Shaw of Iran to Present), Sustainable Economics.
  20. TRIO programs will see an increase in funds; we should also take advantage of these. The College President's background experience can help open this door to us.
  21. Increase enrollment, by starting with high school students through PSEO. Have admissions representatives visit high schools and promote the program.
  22. Better utilize classroom space. Some classes have a max cap of 30 or more, but are limited by the number of seats because of the room size. Some of the courses using the largest classrooms are not filling the seats; these classes could be held in a smaller room.
  23. There has been history in the United States that when companies start to feel the pinch of economic stress, most fail independently. Most try to support themselves on their own and it can be the death of many companies. In today’s economic struggle, the strength comes from local to federal government, private organizations, grants and medical communities where the pinch though hard, still maintains integrity. I believe that in order to satisfy the economic struggle we are face with, a quick answer would be an affiliation with private colleges should be brought into the picture. This means working with colleges such as Rasmussen, Globe University and others whom in the past, independently did their own. Also, working with Masters Degree programs such as Augsburg, Saint Mary's and Concordia where an affiliation can capture some of their students at a cost effective resource.
  24. A cross-realignment with medical centers such as Mayo Clinic, Harvard, or John Hopkins and other hospitals outside the metro should be introduced. Children’s hospital Respiratory graduates are working in Saudi Arabia starting next month to educate them. Why we are not involved. Critical error since our program is the strength of their department. Global marketing can increase cap sizes which in turn help out college.
  25. Another way of increasing profit while sustaining costs is to look to become more Armed Forces friendly. In true honesty, this college does not completely support the Armed Forces and being a member of the Navy, there is no way one can graduate here completely online. If we offer courses completely online and look to market this hidden group, we will increase profit.
  26. Instead of increasing cap sizes for classes, have some instructors develop a web enhanced problematic course curriculum to increase classes. In order to do this, private industry must be willing to make the effort to bring in staff for training either online or face to face.
  27. Also there is a market for existing college graduates who already hold a BA or BS to acquire important technical skills. I think if we delivered that message to the right folks we would boost enrollment. We could infiltrate local private colleges and draw on students who are overpaying for courses that will transfer. Again we would need to create a marketing taskforce to do this well. If we make it easy for the students of private colleges to take courses that transfer, there is plenty of business for Saint Paul College.
  28. Another idea for 325 Marshall: move the Cosmet/Esth/Massage Therapy programs there and open a full service salon/spa with appealing signage and strategic advertising to the public. Especially since this is a separate space with designated parking it could be very appealing to the neighborhood.
  29. As a society we are deeply engaged in a virtual environment. By incorporating more hybid (online/on-site) classes, and service learning opportunities, we can not only increase student enrollment by engaging younger students who socialize online, all day, every day (even during school hours), and increase class sizes by offering live-streaming feed from the classrooms thus providing online simulations, lectures, and field trips as a part of the curriculum. Without having a decrease in our teaching staff and not creating an unrealistic environment or over-working the ones we already have.
  30. Boosting enrollment of course would be great. Methods to do this include a marketing team of Saint Paul College students to recruit future students. Go out to the high schools and promote PSEO and starting the college journey at Saint Paul College. We need to network with high school teachers who are in a position to make a recommendation. Business teachers and science teachers mostly.
  31. Consider giving overload in cases where an additional class will easily fill, giving the college more income. Last year, classes were cut to reduce overload that normally would have filled. So, even though overload was high, extra classes could have earned the college money.
  32. Create a process whereby there is a coordinated schedule of open labs and classrooms available to Continuing Education to allow for more flexible use of facilities which can therefore generate additional revenue for CE/CT. There is no vehicle currently in place for this to occur. In fact, we are discouraged from using main campus facilities and can't book rooms on the room scheduler.
  33. First off offer discounted cosmetics or haircuts/styles thru the students, second use current students fields of study towards repairs and or product or installation such as discounted auto repair or installations, third when students enroll and declare a major require a few credits not in their field of study as to test the water and their full interest in a program so they don't become bored or overwhelmed, and fourth the culinary arts program which I had chosen but it was full :(
  34. Hold more weekend (even Sunday) classes in fall and spring.
  35. I think we should add more arts programs. I would like to join a dance class.
  36. In order to create retention revenue gain, more focus and consideration could be provided by comprehensively identifying what our first term students need. A survey mid-way through the first term for entering students could be conducted in order to identify needs. By following up with the entering population on advising and study strategies during the first term and throughout the entire year, students who are likely to need extra help would be identified.
  37. In order to manage such tasks, advising staff could train student mentors to aid in advising and support. By retaining more first year college students, SPC would gain revenue.
  38. Lots of certifications require continuing education, such as yoga, massage therapy, personal training, and group fitness. Offer short 1 credit classes that could be used to fulfill these requirements during hours when these people are available to take classes such as evenings and weekends.
  39. More mental health support would help to retain students. Students in crisis who do not have access to help often end up failing or dropping out. Hiring more mental health support does not necessarily mean that more mental health counselors should be hired, but further support for students struggling with stressors could have access to a trained listener when they are in crisis. One avenue to investigate additional cost-efficient counseling help might be to look for graduate students from related fields.
  40. Start using the cleanroom for outside industry - In my opinion the best way to earn money in this area is to hire a part-time QUALIFIED person that can actually run samples or train outside users. Although it would initially cost money to hire someone, we would go from almost no use to potentially maximum usage.
  41. The college could perform web development and networking projects for any company willing to have students volunteer for a donation to the college. This would allow students to get work experience that would go on job applications as well as potential extra credit. This would be both non-profit and beneficial to students and the college. Could be a great opportunity for experience during the summer break.
  42. Utilize 325 Marshall for a specific program (i.e. Saint Paul College School of Nursing/SPC School of Respiratory Therapy/SPC School of MLT/etc.). Whatever is decided that is in high demand could fully utilize the space and has jobs in the future economy. Then advertise and market it heavily. This separate space should be billed along the same line as the Carlson School of Mgmt. at the U.

Auxiliary Services

  1. Mark the closest 50 lot spaces as "Premium" and charge an additional $.50 to $1 per day for their use. Not sure how to administer, perhaps buying a sticker each semester would be easier to administer.
  2. Charge a $5 fee (or something) for the privilege of reserving textbooks. Not sure how heavily utilized this is, but some assessment of fees (maybe for a priority pickup window?) would not seem inappropriate.
  3. Open the City View Grille early enough in the evening that students can dine there. I have night classes and would eat there but I can't if I want to get to class on time.
  4. Market our facility for outside use during off-peak times. We have a great location in proximity to hotels, downtown, catering facility, etc. Offering a conference or event host site and market to target groups. Example, the Cathedral holds weddings during off peak times for campus. We could do more to market and create vendor relationships for wedding receptions, etc. We could generate revenue for the college if we did more to promote this as a conference/meeting/event site.
  5. IT should provide services to help us (Faculty), as well as Staff and Students fix home laptops! They could charge a small fee and share the profit with the college. Geek Squad recently wanted to charge me $400 to remove a virus and save all my data. Since this was my work laptop, I asked IT to take a look at it and they fixed it in a few hours. Now it’s better and faster than it was in a long time! This is an untapped gold mine. I have plenty of students that complain about the ridiculous prices that Geek Squad has but I can't send them to IT because they are "personal" laptops. Think about it. The IT guru that fixes the laptop can get a small bonus, and the rest of the money goes to SPC! It’s win-win!
  6. Look into selling eBooks at the bookstore as an alternative format for texts. My students are starting to buy eBooks, and many will probably want to buy their text as an eBook, since it is now available in that format. If there is some way for the bookstore to be involved then we wouldn't lose the profit.
  7. Saint Paul College is a geographically desirable location for events. We should market our cafe, grille, faculty dining room and windowed conference rooms to the public. My sister had her wedding reception on Summit Avenue - not far from here and paid top dollar. SPC view of the city is spectacular and, with decorating, I have seen the cafeteria look stunning. This is a completely untapped source of revenue. Consider offering free parking to weddings held at the cathedral that also have their reception here. I'm sure there are many other incentives that could be offered to compete with the Summit Ave mansions/downtown hotels.
  8. Offer a rewards card for eating at the school. Advertise the city grill on groupon to bring in customers who live in the neighborhood.
  9. If there is Financial Aid that covers for parking, it could be more helpful than paying out of cash.

Facilities

  1. Investigate rental of some facilities (i.e., theater) or, if they are available for rent, let people know it! Nothing on website. Especially invite community activities that will expose people to other programs. Look at the Wellstone Center (http://www.wellstonecenter.com/index.htm) for possible structure and marketing.
  2. Place aluminum cans receptacle in every room. Sell cans directly to salvage. I see a lot of them in the regular garbage.
  3. Save lost & found items, solicit donations - have a couple of giant rummage sales annually.
  4. Some information has been going around regarding recycling. As far as my understanding goes, Saint Paul College receives money for the amount of recycling they produce. Posters, TV broadcasts and emails should be distributed regarding better recycling habits so the campus can make more while spending less on trash removal.
  5. Increase massage and similar service prices by 10%.
  6. More actively promote the availability of Fitness memberships and the services.

Fees

  1. Charge a fee for overdue library books. I say this as an offender! If we (borrowers) are irresponsible, we should expect to pay some fine in consequence.
  2. For the past 20 years, we have charged $20.00 for a duplicate graduation award. Fee should be increased.
  3. Implement a $5 per semester wireless access fee for the electricity we all use plugging out laptops in.
  4. Reinstate a reduced application fee.
  5. Consider a student accessible copy center and increasing student fee supported printing. The limited printing ability on campus and the high cost of home printer ink limits the resources I feel it is appropriate to provide online rather than as hard-copies.
  6. Increase the tuition for non-Minnesota residents. The fee statement for CSCI 2453 showed tuition for MN resident and non-MN resident as equal.

Miscellaneous Income

  1. Set up a shopping page that pays revenue to the school. Might even be fun if there were gifts or items suggested by faculty or alumni. (The latter ties in with wanting to get alumni more involved with the school.)
  2. Allow online orders for products that can be prepared, or services that can be performed, by students or faculty.
  3. Scroll ads at the bottom of the information displays around the building.
  4. The Carpentry, Cabinetmaking and other Trade & Tech programs produce high quality entertainment centers, Adirondack chairs, etc. as part of their program. Some students do not want them or discard them after the semester. We could possibly auction them. It would also highlight the high quality work our students do while at Saint Paul College.
  5. We are always looking for ways to reduce our costs; one way we have developed is separating our scrap waste further than past practices to gain more value per pound.
  6. I also think we should have little groups help fundraise for the school. If there were a huge festival, I'm sure a lot of people would pay to come. And I'm sure there are students more than willing to volunteer.

Other

  1. Investigate using MN State IDs as student IDs. I think the state could generate revenue by offering to piggyback services through the mag strip.
  2. Saint Thomas draws on its alumni to raise capital. Why not use that relationship with your community to boost enrollment and create a Saint Paul College Foundation for tax deductible donations. There are a few ways to do that, the easiest would be to partner with an existing 501c3 with a similar mission and create a subsidiary part dedicated to raising money for Saint Paul College student scholarships. The Irwin Andrew Porter Foundation might be willing to talk with us about that possibility. Its founder is Amy Hubbard as I recall. This mini foundation can be managed by students of the college providing excellent career skills in the process. Saint Thomas draws on its alumni to raise capital. Why not use that relationship with your community to boost enrollment and create a Saint Paul College Foundation for tax deductible donations. There are a few ways to do that, the easiest would be to partner with an existing 501c3 with a similar mission and create a subsidiary part dedicated to raising money for Saint Paul College student scholarships. The Irwin Andrew Porter Foundation might be willing to talk with us about that possibility. Its founder is Amy Hubbard as I recall. This mini foundation can be managed by students of the college providing excellent career skills in the process.

Cost Savings Comments

Academic Programs / Educational Offerings

  1. If you do not know who I am, I'm one of 4 welding instructors in the welding program. For the last 10 years, I have been following the advancement of virtual training in the welding trades. SIM's was one of the pioneers in the development of virtual training. Lincoln Electric about 4 years ago bought technology from SIM's and has created a virtual welder that is state-of-the-art. The early years did not support the data that this technology was effective in training and cost efficiency. There is now sufficient data that shows not only improved performance by students but also an overall cost savings as there is a reduction of consumables in gasses, wire, electrodes, tips, nozzles and so on. It does fall under the category of green technology for this reason. Hennepin Tech & MCTC both have these units and are very pleased with the results; in fact MCTC had published the results last year as to the effectiveness of the trainer.
  2. I think that we should 1. Take out the classes that aren't very popular and replace them with higher demand classes. 2. Maybe going paperless 3. Spending money on necessities first, before thinking about wants. 4. Maybe set up some fundraisers, they're fun and a good way to raise money. I would say to raise money for the services, but since it's a school you can't do that because of the MN laws. But just by doing those simple things, can help dramatically.
  3. Reduce the number of magazine and newspaper subscriptions in the library by 75%. I really doubt most of those are being read by anyone.

Auxiliary Services

  1. Use an online source for students to buy textbooks such as amazon.com. It makes no sense for online students to have to come to campus to buy books. Bookstore hours could be reduced.

Facilities

  1. In the winter, set the thermostat of the building about 5 degrees lower and in the summer 5 degrees warmer. I would say it is comfortable to have in the winter a temperature of about 66 degrees and in the summer 70.
  2. Investing in a solar panel to install in the roof of the school to provide electricity
  3. Solar panels and wind generators (see video) might also help reduce cost while improving the school's image (www.youtube.com/watch?v=IMw01P7RwUw)

Other

  1. Consider operating some support services along the lines of printing allotments - so much included in fees, reasonable charges for additional usage. Could apply to computer labs, career and placement center, personal scheduling of tutoring, etc.
  2. We should look at the costs of staff/faculty/administrators printing off copies....lots of wasted paper; printing multiple copies of papers, printing in color when not necessary, printing one sided when could be double sided, etc.
  3. Taking a look at our waste practices may provide more cost savings in other areas.
  4. Don't spend money on buying and hiding skeletons around Halloween. That might save money.
  5. Presently we are encouraged to spend down our supply budgets to zero in each department for a number of reasons. Possibly pool budgets, look to greatest needs and return any surplus without penalty in future budgets.
  6. Devise a centralized process for faculty to obtain classroom and office supplies (printer paper, white board markers, etc.) that would be more efficient than buying it from the bookstore or ordering supplies by department.
  7. During the summer the campus is pretty dead on Fridays. We could move student services to a 4 day work week to reduce energy costs like we have in the past.
  8. I think we could significantly reduce paper usage/costs and administrative time in many ways. A primary one that could result in system wide savings (in addition to our college) is streamlining processes for paperwork and making them electronic. This would be both a cost and time saving mechanism and a much better use of technology and human capital. Implementing and accepting digital signatures on paper work and an automated system for purchasing and contracts. So many of the forms we currently use ask for duplicates of information. More of a stress on using electronic means vs. paper/print in all areas (agendas, minutes, etc.). Very little should need to be actually printed.
  9. Go paperless. Students can print their own syllabus, course handouts, and lab packets independently online. This means that teachers don't need to print and distribute things, they can simply put them on d2l. E-readers, iPads, and smartphones are something that are becoming increasingly popular, and should be used to save paper. With course packets, not only do they not take up space in the bookstore and need to be printed on college machines that need to be maintained and by students being paid to run them, but students can simply reprint pages they've lost or only print what they need each time. We did this in Chemistry I, and it worked great.
  10. Return to 4 day/10hour workweek in summer to save on energy costs.
  11. Consider setting computers to default gray scale printing and check printer’s gray-scale abilities for future printer purchases to reduce use of color cartridges.