In preparation for contract negotiations The Akron-AAUP commissioned Rudy Fichtenbaum, Professor of Economics at Wright State and President of the national AAUP, to update his previous analysis of The University’s financial status. His report suggests an interpretation of the financial status of the University that seems to be at odds with the administration’s characterizations.
“In 2014, the University had record investment income, a decrease in operating revenue and a huge decrease in operating expenses and as a result made $4 million…”
“On the positive side the University has diversified sources of revenue and has had a positive cash flow every year since 2002. Moody’s noted that cash flow was adequate in 2013 and that management had reported that cash flow had improved in 2014…”
“…Clearly the University has improved its financial position since my last report in 2009. Although the composite scores did decline between 2011 and 2013, the scores are much better than they were in 2009. Therefore, I conclude that the University of Akron is in good financial condition.”
The report also identifies expenditures which drained money away from the university’s primary educational mission:
“Table 10 shows revenues and expenses for intercollegiate athletics…The overwhelming majority of revenue comes from student fees and institutional support …. This is money that could have been used to fundacademic programs. On the expense side, only 25% of expenses are for student aid (athletic scholarships). The bottom line is that most athletic spending does not go for scholarships and the overwhelming majority revenue to support these activities comes directly from educational and general funds that could support academic programs.”
We provide a link to the report HERE. Professor Fichtenbaum’s report is based on publicly available documents; you may distribute copies of his report as you wish.