|Tniversity of Delaware President David P. Roselle Feb. 22 asked members of the Joint Finance Committee of the Delaware General Assembly for $2,018,000 in additional support for the upcoming fiscal year.
The Universitys request to the governor was for $100,426,300, a rise of 6.4 percent over the current state allocation of $94,361,600, The governor recommended $97,576,100 for UD.
Roselle urged the legislators to support the governors recommendations and, should funds become available, to make up the shortfall so several special partnerships between UD and the state can be enhanced for the benefit of Delawareans.
As I look back over my tenure at the University, I am struck by the many ways in which the University and the state of Delaware have strengthened their partnership in service to the citizens of our state and region, Roselle said. Most certainly, both education and services to citizens in the state of Delaware have improved as the result of our partnership.
Specifically, Roselle said, UD is more accessible as a result of collaborative scholarship and financial aid efforts; retention and graduation rates outperform those of other state-assisted schools; and the partnership with the K-12 educational community has enhanced accountability and performance standards for students and teachers, as well as improved delivery of educational services, most notably through the use of technology.
The partnership between UD and the state also has strengthened the economic core of the state through initiatives in the areas of molecular biology, biotechnology and information technology, among others, Roselle said.
The Delaware Technology Park, already a notable success, has embarked on a construction program that will enable more start-up companies to remain, prosper and create new jobs in Delaware, he said.
In addition, he said, the University enhances business and the quality of the day-to-day lives of Delawares citizens through a variety of programs, including Cooperative Extension, agricultural extension and urban outreach.
Requests to the Joint Finance Committee include full funding for five items on the Universitys original request:
- an additional $20,000, bringing support to $70,000 for the Mathematics and Science Education Resource Center, which provides state-of-the-art curriculum materials in mathematics and science to the states K-12 educational community;
- an additional $50,000, bringing support to $100,000, for the Agricultural Research and Education Center, to fund a new research associate position dedicated to exploration of alternative methods of weed control that will enable Delaware farmers to comply with federal environmental guidelines in a cost-effective manner;
- an additional $25,000, bringing support to $100,000, to strengthen early childhood education programs in the College of Human Resources, Education and Public Policy, targeting programs and services for practicing teachers throughout the state, early childhood education majors at UD and social services personnel;
- an additional $43,000, bringing support to a total of $100,000, for a new initiative in civics education, to help practicing teachers and teacher education students more effectively engage young people in the democratic process, building on an earlier successful project UD designed with the Taft Institute for Two Party Government to raise awareness of respresentative government; and
- a total of $100,000 to strengthen the curriculum materials collection and related services of the Education Resource Center, enabling broader access and use of the center to educators throughout the state, including an increased electronic presence in the schools, using connected classroom and libraries.
- Should additional funds become available, Roselle also asked for support of 14 additional items that were not included in the governors recommended budget, in the following priority order:
- an increase of $100,000 to the Agricultural Environmental Quality line, to hire a research associate specifically trained in geographic information systems;
- an additional $50,000 for the Center for Community Development and Family Policy, to expand programs and services assisting nonprofit and community-based organizations throughout the state;
- an additional $50,000 in the Local Government Research and Assistance Program, to assist in addressing the rapidly increasing demand for services from local jurisdictions, state agencies and community groups;
- $150,000 to establish an Office of Teacher Recruitment, to ensure that Delaware is able to attract the best and brightest student teachers and practitioners to meet the impending teacher shortage that will affect school districts throughout the state;
- $100,000 for the Agricultural Experiment Station, to replace federal funds lost through federal appropriation reductions;
- an additional $80,000 for poultry and swine diagnostics, to hire an extension associate who will focus on food safety issues related to handling, production, processing and retailing of poultry products;
- $250,000 to create a new Center for Leadership Education and Community Service that will work within UDs academic departments to strengthen and integrate leadership and serve as core elements in students educations through carefully structured involvement in community service programs;
- $200,000 for a new research initiative within the College of Marine Studies, directed specifically at research in the emerging area of marine biosensors, which could detect and control harmful changes in the marine ecosystem;
- $100,000 for the Soil Testing Service, to meet the anticipated increase in demand, resulting from increasingly stringent federal regulations;
- $200,000 for economic development policy research, which would enable UD to provide consistent and continuous research and analysis on the states economic potential and assist ongoing partnerships with the Delaware Development Office and other business and economic groups in realizing the full range of business opportunities available;
- $100,000 to expand the programs and services of the College of Human Resources, Education and Public Policys Center for Disabilities Studies;
- $100,000 for a new initiative in health services policy research, which would identify and disseminate information on best practices within the industry to appropriate agencies and personnel throughout the state;
- $200,000 to implement a statewide partnership that would expand the efforts begun in 1995 in the College of Health and Nursing Sciences to address the health needs of Delawareans over the age of 65; and
- $100,000 for a marine transportation initiative, designed to reduce significantly air pollution resulting from stack emissions from freighter and tanker traffic on the Delaware River and Bay and to assist the federal government in developing informed public policy related to those emissions.
Roselle concluded his presentation with an update of the Universitys Campaign for Delaware, a five-year effort to raise $225 million. He indicated that approximately $195 million has been raised during the first 17 months of the campaign and that this support will help the University address a number of needs and will enable the University to offer additional opportunities to students, staff and faculty.