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2009–10 Budget: Keeping Our Students in Mind

President Philip EatonIn February, President Philip Eaton provided early tuition information to help students and families plan ahead for the 2009–10 academic year. At that time, he mentioned that details regarding SPU’s budget would be available in March. Review his update on the budget below, and let us know if you have any questions.

Just days ago, I contacted you with an early announcement of our tuition for next year. I indicated then that more information about our University Budget for 2009–10 would be coming soon.

The reason reporting to you and our students on our budget is important, of course, is that it tells the story about our key priorities and variables: in particular tuition, financial aid, and commitment to quality.

And so, in order to keep you fully in the loop, here are my thoughts about the budget our Board of Trustees approved on February 26.

Keeping Our Students in Mind

We have built our budget for next year with our students and their families in mind. We want our students to be able to continue at SPU even during this downturn in the economy.

We are focusing then on three things in the budget:
  • A historically low tuition increase at 3.75 percent and a significant increase in financial aid funding.
  • Depth in our reserves that should keep us from any disruption of operations.
  • Enhancing, not diminishing the outstanding quality of an SPU education.

Not Easy, but Necessary

In order to invest in these ways and to stay focused on the needs of our students and their families, we have decided to forego any salary increases for faculty and staff next year, and we have cut $1.6 million from our budget. These are not easy decisions, but we feel they are prudent and necessary responses to the circumstances in which we are all living.

Information You Can Use

I sent an email with details to all SPU undergraduate students, which you are welcome to read.

I encourage you to take a look so that you can better understand our careful planning and commitments for the year ahead.

For Such a Time as This

By now you know that we are absolutely committed to being a first-rate Christian university that is making a difference in the world. We are not in this business for ourselves; rather, we want your sons and daughters to be prepared to make an extraordinary impact in the world that they will enter as graduates of Seattle Pacific. This is our mission. This is precisely what organizes our commitments in the budget.

I hope you find this information helpful. My goal is to keep you fully informed every step of the way. May God go with us all as we continue to navigate these uncertain waters.

As we try in every way to be prudent in our stewardship of resources, I would tell you as well that we continue to plan aggressively for a strong future for Seattle Pacific.

Our plans are in place. Our vision is certain and clear. For such a time as this, we seek to bring hope into the world we serve.

Philip W. Eaton,

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