BGSU president says major cuts ahead

Bowling Green State University President Mary Ellen Mazey
Bowling Green State University President Mary Ellen Mazey

BOWLING GREEN -- Bowling Green State University will have to "significantly reduce" its operating budget, and faces a large budget shortfall, university President Mary Ellen Mazey said today in a message to staff.

University leaders project a $3 million to $10 million deficit over the next several years, and that shortfall will be covered with budget reductions, not increased tuition, Ms. Mazey said in her campus-wide email.

"Simply put, our current operating model is unsustainable," she said. "With student debt on the rise, we cannot continue to raise tuition to cover our costs. While we are aggressively pursuing new sources of revenue, it is clear that we must significantly reduce our operating costs."

The university hired consulting firm Accenture for $500,000 to audit BGSU operations, evaluate programs, and identify cost-saving measures. The company's report is expected to be complete in December. Ms. Mazey said the goal is to "achieve large-scale cost reductions without jeopardizing our core mission."

"I understand that change can be disconcerting. It is important that we all be patient and all keep an open mind as we work through this process," she said. "It is my hope that this project will provide a roadmap to a much brighter future for our University."

The BGSU Board of Trustees met at 1:30 p.m. today.