A Note from University President Tom Sullivan
- By Staff Council
Over the last several weeks, the University community has been engaged actively in a conversation about ways to balance the FY 2014 budget. These conversations have taken place at all levels of the University ranging from the Board of Trustees to individual departments. I believe that the solution to the budget challenge facing us can best be achieved by working together to identify the best options and by supporting each other as we make these decisions.
This is a time when we need balance addressing the budget challenges while taking advantages of opportunities to position the University to continue the remarkable progress it has made over the last several years. For example, at the February Board of Trustees meeting, we had an extensive discussion about the draft housing master plan. The plan proposes additional housing options for undergraduates as well as graduate students, faculty and staff. The vision contained in the plan will be transformative for the University.
One of the proposals involves creating the “Green Mountain Walkway” – a pathway that would connect Redstone Campus on the south end to Trinity Campus on the north end winding through several other residential areas past the Davis Center and Bailey/Howe Library through the heart of the academic center of the University. The plan includes proposals for several new buildings and significant renovations and transformations to existing buildings.
The cost of implementing this plan will be significant and some have asked why even engage in discussions at a time when we are working to address a budget shortfall. The answer is simple—we must continue to invest in the future and to explore every opportunity that will secure UVM’s position as a preeminent university that attracts outstanding faculty, staff and students and serves the State of Vermont. While we need to be attentive to the challenge before us, we must purposefully consider all opportunities to achieve the vision for this great University.
I am confident in our collective capacity to address the budget challenge in an effective and strategic manner. I am equally confident in the long-term strength and excellence of UVM. Why, because this is a University community where we all work together and support each other toward the University’s goals.
To learn more about this initiative and review the Housing Master Plan presentation given at the February Board of Trustees meeting, click here.