MARQUETTE, Mich.—Northern Michigan University will offer a tuition credit to resident undergraduate students with the $1.3 million in stimulus funds the university is scheduled to receive through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. The NMU Board of Trustees today approved the recommendation. The plan is to apply the credit, which will average about $190 for full-time students, to the fall 2010 semester. "The legislation that is providing the funding requires universities to use it to either mitigate increases in tuition and fees for students who are Michigan residents or to improve university learning facilities," said Gavin Leach, vice president for finance and administration. “We wanted to help Northern students because of the economic climate. These funds will directly assist students attending the university." In other action at today’s meeting, the board: ▪Approved a new Master of Business Administration (MBA) program beginning the fall 2010 semester. ▪Authorized the transfer of the liquor license from university-owned property at 1700 Presque Isle Ave. to the NMU Golf Course in Chocolay Township. ▪Approved the purchase of a Charter Communications parcel, tower and building in Houghton for $6,520 for use by WNMU-FM Public Radio 90, which has a license application for that area before the Federal Communica-tions Commission (FCC). ▪Authorized a public hearing regarding proposed changes in use of two bond-financed university facilities: the University Center and Superior Dome. Altering the provisions to “private activity bonds” will preserve the tax-exempt status of the interest while allowing NMU to rent space in these facilities to tax-exempt organizations such as Marquette General Health System. It will not impact the interest rate or the bond holders. ▪Accepted more than $4,700 in gifts and nearly $2 million in external grants. ▪Based on changes to federal law designed to help protect employees' retirement investments in the event of stock market volatility, the board authorized the vice president for finance and administration to solicit proposals from qualified independent firms to provide a broad range of advisory services for retirement investment options offered to NMU employees. ▪Granted emeritus status to David Powers, professor of mathematics and computer science. ▪Approved the five-year master plan, which universities are required to submit annually to the state. ▪Accepted two new public school academy appointments: Anthony Andary at JKL Bahweting Charter School, for a term expiring June 30, 2012; and Anthony Colbert at the Walton Charter School, for a term expiring June 30, 2011. The board was also informed that annual site and facilities reviews were completed at each of the five schools that NMU charters. ▪Approved the 2008-09 evaluation and 2009-10 goals for NMU President Les Wong. ▪Revised the trustee emeriti policy, which had been based primarily on time served, to include defined performance and service criteria as a justification for approving the emeritus designation. ▪Received updates on the following: the H1N1 virus campus impact; energy and sustainability practices at NMU; the co-generation plant permitting process; the student-managed investment fund performance; and 2009-10 action projects identified by NMU for its continued participation in the Academic Quality Improvement Program. AQIP is an alternative process through which already-accredited institutions can maintain accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission by demonstrating their commitment to continuous quality improvement.
December 11, 2009