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Goal 5: Ensure a Business Model that Builds the University’s Continued Strength and Educational Excellence
We will vigorously pursue a business strategy that effectively manages our resources to ensure the continued health and vitality of the university for generations to come. We will focus the university community on maximizing the value of a DePaul education, especially as manifested in student learning success and career outcomes. Continuing to invest in the university’s improvement, we will develop new programs, especially market-responsive academic programs, to meet the needs of our current and future students. DePaul is committed to remaining financially accessible and affordable to a diverse student population through pursuit of integrated tuition pricing and financial aid strategies coupled with vigilant, efficient management of our fiscal resources. Generating sufficient revenue for operations and strategic objectives, we will continue to develop the physical, financial and operational capabilities to support our academic excellence.
Objective 5a: Sustain our financial vitality.
- Maintain the affordability of a DePaul education.
- Focus enrollment strategies and fuel strategic, targeted growth.
- Ensure continued competitiveness in achieving and balancing undergraduate and graduate enrollment goals, including quality, diversity, affordability and net revenue outcomes.
- Develop new market-responsive programs.
- Offer new modes of delivery and increase the flexibility of course and program offerings.
- Pursue an agile business model that ensures growth in net tuition revenue over the duration of the plan, provides sufficient resources for strategic investments and maintains financial strength.
- Fund appropriate levels of institutional financial aid to ensure the desired student profile and continued mission. Develop strategic aid programs for targeted graduate and professional populations.
- Continue to develop philanthropic support for ongoing operations, new initiatives and endowment growth.
Objective 5b: Invest in our staff.
- Recruit, develop and promote a highly qualified staff committed to our institutional values of cooperation and exceptional service.
- Effectively fund support functions throughout the university to ensure a high level of service to students and academic units.
Objective 5c: Adhere to principles of sustainable growth and financial discipline.
Remain vigilantly attentive to the following principles of sustainable growth and financial discipline to allow for DePaul’s continued success within a challenging economic environment.
- Maintain a commitment to sustainable annual growth in net tuition revenue.
- Ensure realization of annual growth in net tuition revenue.
- Maintain an effective mix and balance of high-margin and subsidized academic programs to ensure aggregate gross margin performance.
- Maintain a student mix that balances academic priorities, mission-related objectives and ongoing financial vitality.
- Strategically invest in new academic program development to capitalize on marketplace opportunities and broaden overall revenue mix.
- Grow unrestricted fundraising revenues to realize endowment growth and expand scholarship opportunities for students.
- Generate increasing operating surpluses, exercising effective cost controls.
- Manage faculty and staff headcount commensurate with academic program and enrollment growth and as required for new initiatives, increasing regulatory compliance and other strategic requirements within overall parameters of net revenue growth and favorable operating margins.
- Provide competitive salaries and benefits to attract, retain and motivate highly qualified faculty and staff within the overall parameters of net revenue growth and operating margins.
- Constrain growth in overhead and operating costs to less than the increases in net tuition revenue.
- Maintain our current level of financial strength, creditworthiness and bond ratings.
- Maintain sufficient fiscal flexibility to respond to a rapidly changing environment.
- Provide adequate levels of working capital to fund daily operational cash requirements.
- Maintain a disciplined approach to capital expenditures without issuance of new debt in the short term, utilizing institutional reserves as deemed strategically appropriate.
- Maintain the financial ratio of available funds to expenses at 0.8 by the end of the plan.