On Nov. 15, the Metropolitan State University of Denver Faculty Senate welcomed Budget Committee Chair Kristina Kesselring and guests Jim Carpenter, chief financial officer, and Marie Mora, Ph.D., provost ad interim, to share budget-related updates. 

Kesselring reviewed the fiscal 2024 budget and what to expect for the next planning season, including fiscal 2025 budget priorities laid out by President Janine Davidson, Ph.D. Kesselring explained the role, purpose and scope of the UPBAC (University Planning and Budget Advisory Committee) and reviewed changes to the budgeting process, which include: 

  • A decentralization of authority and responsibility. 
  • New roles for the Budget Office and departments to allow budget management at the branch level. 
  • Minimizing moving budgets. 


Budget background and considerations 

Carpenter provided context regarding how and why budget decisions are made and addressed the question: Are budgets overstated? He also shared fiscal 2025 budget assumptions, the University’s approach to reserves and future spending considerations, such as the compensation-equity study. 

Jim Carpenter

“Budgeting is ultimately about tradeoffs. What are the tradeoffs to doing something differently or responding to a proposal,” Carpenter said. “Those are the types of questions the UPBAC considers as it digs into the University’s priorities, costs and revenue drivers.” 

What about underspending?

The budget is planned to be structurally balanced, meaning revenues and expenditures are balanced and not overstated. Branches and departments are asked to scrutinize past budgets to identify underspending, then reduce future budget proposals by that amount. 

3-3 Proposed Teaching Load budget implications

Mora reviewed the proposal and budget implications to address why the proposal was not deemed financially viable by the Board of Trustees when it was presented as a consideration for the fiscal 2024 budget. 

Implementing the 3-3 Teaching Load plan would have required hiring 71 new full-time faculty positions over a three-year period, costing an estimated $7.4 million. Based on those projections and accounting for compensation increases and multiyear projections, the plan was paused.  

“The proposed budget for this plan was a fairly large number,” Mora said. “When we talk about tradeoffs, this is one the board encountered (when considering its implications for the University’s budget).”  

The cross-functional Workload Task Force continues to examine proposals. 

Provost update

  • Academic Affairs has incorporated budget hearings into its planning process to ensure that requests and proposals are screened at the provost level before they are submitted to the Budget Office. 
  • Mora is preparing memos to approve the seven Faculty Senate Academic Policy Committee recommendations approved by the Senate: 
  1. APC Academic Standing 
  2. APC Prior Learning 
  3. APC Grade Clarification 
  4. APC Defense Subject Standardized Test Exam List   
  5. APC Upper Division Graduation Requirement   
  6. APC University Minor Language   
  7. APC Extended Major   


Rowdy’s Corner


  • A cross-functional Shared Governance Taskforce led by David Fine, general counsel, and Jenny Allert, associate professor of Nursing, will examine and refine the decision-making process at the University. A working document outlining a set of shared-governance guidelines/principles will be previewed next semester.  
  • There are four proposed University policies at the community-comment stage. See the Early Bird article and the Faculty Senate slide for more details.  
  • Workload questions and answers are available for review.  
  • The Nov. 14 Student Success Launch team meeting notes are available.  
  • The Plaza Building is scheduled to receive the planned Wi-Fi  upgrade Dec. 16-19. The Student Health Center will be prioritized and will reopen Dec. 18. The rest of the building will not have a reliable network until Dec. 20. See more about the Plaza Network Upgrade, including what’s open and when.  
  • The Faculty Senate is seeking a new parliamentarian and a Rules Committee chair. Email Liz Goodnick if interested in serving as one or both.  
  • MSU Denver Colorado Faculty Advisory Council representative Arlene Sgoutas will leave on sabbatical next semester. Zsuzsa Balogh will step in for the spring semester as her replacement. 
  • The Interprofessional Education Committee is seeking more representation from the Faculty Senate. Submit interest here.  
  • Two Open Educational Resource trainings are available. 
  • A six-session faculty-and-staff learning community will occur in spring. Contact Kathryn Young for more information. 

Academic Policy Committee 

APC Bylaws change: second read and vote 

  • Approved with 65 in favor, one against and six abstentions.  

Global Diversity Military Credit: first read 

  • Global Diversity Credit proposed change from six months’ foreign service to four months’ foreign service to match updated deployment timelines.
  • Language change to remove dishonorable discharge and align with eligibility for benefits. 

Prior Learning Assessment Military Credit: first read 

  • PLA Military Credit moved to the registrar. 
  • Updated language, hyperlink and phone number 

Automatic Waitlist: first read 

  • Proposal to update the graduate and undergraduate catalog language regarding the process of going from waitlist to enrolled status.  
  • Updated language includes auto-enrollment language, which is new, and a detailed plan to communicate with students.  

Catalog Cleanup technical changes: first read 

Curriculum Committee 

Other business