Skip to main content

This website is no longer being updated. Visit Dartmouth Now for all news published after June 7, 2010.

Dartmouth News
>  News Releases >   2008 >   June

Dartmouth Trustees approve budgets advancing key educational initiatives in undergraduate education, financial aid and important new facilities

Dartmouth College Office of Public Affairs • Press Release
Posted 06/06/08 • Media Contact: Roland Adams • (603) 646-3661

Board also approves temporary freeze of current Board membership until resolution of lawsuit; approves appointments to endowed professorships and tenured faculty positions; and participates in Commencement activities featuring President of Liberia

During its spring-term meeting in Hanover on  June 6, the Dartmouth Board of Trustees:

  • Approved capital and operating budgets for the College's 2009 fiscal year.
  • Voted to freeze current Board membership pending resolution of litigation concerning composition of the Board, while making clear that the Board intends to resume considering nominations and making appointments of new Trustees following the resolution of the case.  
  • Approved appointments for endowed professorship positions and tenured faculty positions across the four faculties of Dartmouth.
Approval of capital and operating budgets, increased endowment distributions

The Board approved for Dartmouth's 2009 fiscal year (July 1, 2008-June 30, 2009): an operating budget of $453 million for the College, exclusive of the professional schools; operating budgets of $232 million, $30 million and $62 million respectively for Dartmouth Medical School, the Thayer School of Engineering and the Tuck School of Business; and a capital budget of approximately $191 million for the institution overall. 

Advancement of key strategic initiatives

The FY 2009 budget will be the first to reflect the effects of an earlier Board decision to adjust the annual endowment distribution formula toward a goal of approximately six percent of the fund's beginning market value (currently nearly $4 billion), along with a supplemental distribution for up to five years.

The additional distribution from the endowment will be focused on supporting Dartmouth's primary operating activities and educational goals. Together with other budget measures, the additional spending will further several key strategic initiatives: 

  • Expansion of the faculty to increase the number of small classes, increase student access to popular courses in areas such as economics and government, support the recently launched Institute for Writing and Rhetoric at Dartmouth, and maintain competitive faculty salaries.
  • An enhanced undergraduate financial aid initiative announced earlier this year that will go into effect this fall. The FY 2009 budget will include approximately $65 million for financial aid (more than 14 percent of the overall College budget), an increase of more than $10 million over last year. Key elements of the initiative include:

1. Free tuition for students who come from family annual incomes below $75,000
2. Replacing loans with scholarships
3. Need-blind admissions for international students
4. Junior year leave term with no earnings expectation

  • Financing for academic and student facilities, including the recently completed Kemeny Hall (for mathematics), the Haldeman Center, eight new residence halls (Berry, Bildner, Byrne, Fahey, Goldstein, McLane, Rauner, Thomas) a new fitness center and the Floren Varsity House; as well as projects now in planning such as the Class of 1978 Life Sciences Center and a Visual Arts Center.

"These initiatives represent our continuing commitment to keeping Dartmouth at the forefront of higher education and to offering an unsurpassed educational experience," said Board Chair Ed Haldeman. "That will not change."

Fiscal Year 2008 will close with a $25 million anticipated operating deficit covered by surpluses from prior years. The deficit reflects primarily reductions in sources of revenue such as availability of federal grants, and lower investment returns. The FY '09 budget is balanced and currently shows a small surplus.

Board membership freeze

The Board voted to freeze its membership until the resolution of the pending court action by the Association of Alumni, which challenges the Board's September 2007 decisions concerning both the composition of the Board and the Alumni Trustee nomination process.  It is the Board's intent to resume considering nominations and making appointments of new Trustees following the resolution of the case. 

Accordingly, the Board decided not to act on the reelection of Trustees completing their first term in June 2008 (including Charter Trustees Brad Evans, Ed Haldeman and Albert Mulley, and Alumni Trustees John Donahoe and T.J. Rodgers) and decided not to initiate the usual procedures to generate Alumni Trustee candidates for the position currently held by Michael Chu, whose second term is scheduled to expire in June 2009.  Chu has agreed to an extension of his term, if that becomes necessary.  Russell Carson, whose second term would have expired at the end of this Board meeting, also has agreed to continue as a member of the Board until the resolution of the lawsuit.

Board Chair Haldeman said: "Given the uncertainty created by the pending litigation, the Board believes it should delay any changes to its membership until the resolution of these questions in the courts, as requested by the complainants.  We regret the interruption to the affairs of the College, but this action is the inevitable result of the lawsuit.  We remain confident that the suit will be shown to be without merit and are eager for the case to proceed to trial and ultimately be resolved.  In the meantime, I appreciate the continued dedication and leadership of the members of the Board, and am especially grateful to Russ Carson for his service as Finance Committee chair and for his willingness to continue his Board service." 

Faculty appointments

The Board reviewed and approved recommended appointments to tenured faculty positions in the faculties of Arts and Sciences as well as Dartmouth Medical School, the Thayer School of Engineering and the Tuck School of Business; and also approved nine appointments to endowed professorships. All appointments are effective July 1, 2008.

2008 Commencement, keynoted by Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, President of Liberia

Over the next two days, trustees will participate in an array of annual activities surrounding graduation, culminating in Commencement ceremonies on Sunday morning, June 8 on the Dartmouth Green. Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, President of Liberia and the first woman elected to lead an African nation, will be the keynote speaker for the event. 

Commencement generally draws as many 13,000 guests to the Dartmouth Green. The College typically awards approximately 1,000 bachelor's degrees and approximately 500 master's and doctoral degrees in the Arts and Sciences and from the College's three professional schools: Dartmouth Medical School, the Thayer School of Engineering and the Tuck School of Business.

Dartmouth will also present honorary degrees to a distinguished group of eight recipients, including Johnson-Sirleaf and:

  • Thomas R. Cech (Doctor of Science)
    Nobel Laureate in Chemistry and President, Howard Hughes Medical Institute
  • Ada Deer (Doctor of Laws)
    Director of the American Indian Studies Program (retired), University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • Martin Feldstein (Doctor of Laws)
    The George F. Baker Professor of Economics, Harvard University
  • Richard Hill '41, Tu'42 (Doctor of Laws
    Former Chair and CEO of First National Bank of Boston
    Chairman Emeritus, Dartmouth College Board of Trustees
  • Evelyn Fox Keller (Doctor of Science)
    Professor of the History and Philosophy of Science, Emeritus, Massachusetts Institute of  Technology
  • Ralph Manuel '58 (Doctor of Humane Letters)
    Former Dean of the College, Dartmouth College and Retired Head of Schools of the Culver Academies
  • Cicely Tyson (Doctor of Arts)

Other pre-Commencement activities include Class Day exercises for undergraduates, Class Day and Investiture ceremonies for Dartmouth Medical School, the Thayer School of Engineering and the Tuck School of Business, a luncheon for members of the 50-Year Reunion Class, the annual Phi Beta Kappa meeting, the annual Baccalaureate service, and receptions for members of Dartmouth's Hill Winds Society, for students involved in public service and religious life through the Tucker Foundation, for Arts and Sciences graduate students and their guests, and for honorary degree recipients and their guests. 

Dartmouth has television (satellite uplink) and radio (ISDN) studios available for domestic and international live and taped interviews. For more information, call 603-646-3661 or see our Radio, Television capability webpage.

Recent Headlines from Dartmouth News: