Trustees approve 2013-14 budget

Room and board to increase

The Ferris Board of Trustees approved millions of dollars in budgets and expansion.

On Oct. 4, the Board of Trustees held their first meeting of this school year at 10 a.m. at the Woodbridge N. Ferris Building in Grand Rapids.

Trustees approved the general fund operating budget of $197.6 million for the year. The overall budget totals $231.1 million combined with the housing and dining budget of $33.5 million.

Sandy Gholston, news services and social media manager for Ferris, explained why the Board of Trustees approved a 2.9 percent increase in room and board rates for the 2013-14 school year.

“The new rate is necessary to cover increased costs related to food, dining operations and employee compensation as the University continues renovation on a new University Center,” Gholston said.

The silver/bronze room and board plan will increase from $8,910 to $9,168 for next year.

Ferris freshman Pre-Optometry major Shaelyn Domansky was disappointed with the increase in room and board next year.

“Right now everything is being paid for by student loans so it doesn’t affect me now,” Domansky said. “In 10 years from now when I’m trying to pay back everything then it’s going to be really tough.

Trustees approved actions included in the university campus facility master plan.

“The master plan includes new buildings and the renovation of existing facilities in a way that reflects better academic function for our students and faculty,” Gholston said.

Ferris will be expanding the Welding Engineering Technology Building and renovating the Advanced Manufacturing and Automotive Technology Building. This project has a projected cost of $35 million.

The next Board of Trustees meeting will be held Dec. 13 in Big Rapids.