Governor Rick Scott recently approved the 2013-14 state budget. We are pleased that for the first time since 2006, UCF and the State University System do not face budget cuts.
As you may recall, last year the state cut $52.6 million from UCF’s budget. The 2013-14 budget returns those funds to the university and provides opportunities for additional dollars through incentive and performance-based funding.
This budget is better than those in the recent past, but UCF is still operating in an environment of significantly reduced state support. While we are pleased with this budget, it by no means makes up for years of state reductions.
As our state emerges from the economic crisis, the long-term success of UCF depends in large part upon our ability to hire and retain tenured and tenure-track faculty members. This is one of our most important priorities.
Our focus continues to be on providing exceptional learning experiences for our students and maintaining the university’s level of excellence. That begins with you.
During the budget process, UCF advocated for across-the-board salary increases for all employees. The Governor and Legislature approved a $1,400 raise for eligible employees making up to $40,000 per year; eligible employees making more than $40,000 will receive a $1,000 raise.
Employees who are represented by unions need to have those unions approve the raises prior to receiving them. Please speak to your supervisor about your eligibility for raises, which are to begin in October.
Separately from the state budget, UCF is working to expand award programs that recognize faculty member excellence. These programs reward performance and allow faculty members the opportunity to earn additional funds.
One such new program is the UCF Reach for the Stars Award, which will honor and reward highly successful research and creative activity accomplished by early-career university professionals.
Despite our limited state funding, we also recently made a major financial commitment to some of our lowest-paid faculty members by initiating the instructor/lecturer promotion process this year.
More Updates Coming
With the state budget discussion nearly complete, I will use upcoming “Provost’s Updates” to discuss other issues that are important to you. To help make these “Updates” relevant, I would appreciate your sharing topics or questions you would like me to address.
I might not be able to answer everything I receive, but please send questions and suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Finally, thank you for everything you do for our students and university. For 50 years, UCF has been home to outstanding staff and faculty members – thank you for continuing that tradition of excellence.