Board of Trustees approves third phase of Clippinger renovation
The Ohio University Board of Trustees approved the final phase of the Clippinger Renovation Strategy and received budget and enrollment updates during its October meetings.
President M. Duane Nellis provided an update on Phase 2 of the campus reopening, including the University’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The meetings were conducted online in accordance with Ohio House Bill 197, which allows for public meetings to be conducted in an online environment due to the COVID-19 pandemic through Dec. 1, 2020.
Clippinger Renovation Strategy
The Board approved the third and final phase of the Clippinger Renovation Strategy. The project will finalize the renovation and modernization of Clippinger Laboratories, significantly extending the building’s useful life. The project includes addressing deferred maintenance, replacing mechanical, electrical and plumbing services on the west side of the building and reprogramming the interior space assignments to fit current needs.
The project is estimated to cost $28.66 million. Design is scheduled to begin in 2021, with construction beginning in the second half of 2022 and being completed in Fiscal Year 2024.
The first two phases of the Clippinger Renovation Strategy include construction of the new Chemistry Building, which is nearing completion, and renovation of the eastern portion of Clippinger. The project will be funded by Century Bond deferred maintenance funds, internal bank financing and state appropriations.
Executive Compensation philosophy review
The Board of Trustees received an update on the University’s executive compensation philosophy. The Board receives regular updates about compensation benchmarking and market analysis to ensure that OHIO offers competitive, market-based compensation to all employees, including executives.
OHIO’s compensation philosophy takes into account experience, market data specific to higher education, market influences, performance factors and position criticality. All executive compensation packages are informed by data provided by Human Resources compensation professionals.
All members of President’s Council agreed to voluntary reductions of their FY21 salaries in the wake of the pandemic. President Nellis and Provost Sayrs voluntarily waived any bonus compensation and reduced their respective salaries by 15 percent. Information related to executive compensation at OHIO, including members of President’s Council and academic deans, is now available at www.ohio.edu/budget.
Service mission updates
Leadership of the College of Health Sciences and Professions provided an update on the college’s efforts to establish community engagement as a defining feature of its culture. This included a review of a pair of investments in community engagement, the Ohio Alliance for Innovation in Population Health and the Office of Community Engagement, and the results achieved by both so far.
In addition, the Board approved a resolution that changes the name of the Voinovich School of Leadership and Public Affairs to the Voinovich School of Leadership and Public Service to better reflect the school’s and university’s emphasis on service to the community.
University leadership provided an update on preliminary Fall 2020 enrollment census data, compared with historical enrollment and planning projections. Highlights included updates on the enrollment impacts of the OHIO Honors Program and alternative pathways offered for Fall 2020, as well as discussion of the evolving enrollment landscape, current and future outlook, key market forces, and ongoing planning efforts for 2021 and beyond.
Leadership provided an update on OHIO’s FY20 year-end results and a summary of the variances in the FY20 forecast and the actual figures. The update focused on how the final Fall 2020 enrollments are forecast to impact the University’s revenues.
Strategic Framework Update
University leadership provided an update on the University’s Strategic Framework, including efforts to amplify research and creative activity. Academic colleges, in collaboration with the office of the Vice President of Research and Creative Activity, have made significant progress toward multiple goals identified in this strategic initiative, including increased applied research, support for strategic research positions, expanded research infrastructure, expanded partnerships with community partners and government entities, and more.
Community Standards/Clery Report
University leadership presented the annual four-year comparison of conduct cases and offenses. The overall case load was down due to the coronavirus pandemic, and alcohol and marijuana cases continued to decline.
The Board also received the University’s 2020 Annual Security Report and Annual Fire Safety Report*, collectively known as the annual Clery Act compliance reports. The reports include calendar years 2017-2019 and will be submitted to the U.S. Department of Education.
(*Note – the U.S. Department of Education has delayed filing of the 2020 Annual Security Report and Annual Fire Safety Report to November 18 due to the pandemic).
In other business, the Board:
- Accepted the 2019-20 Review of Centers and Institutes, which recommended the continuation of the Astrophysical Institute, the Edward Stevens Center for the Study and Development of Literacy and Language, and the Center for Clinical Practice in Education; a one-year extension for the Institute for International Journalism; the shifting of the African American Research and Service Institute to academic review; and the discontinuation of the Center for Higher Education.
- Approved emeriti status for several employees upon their retirement from Ohio University.
- Accepted the program review for the Educational Studies program in the Patton College of Education.
- Approved a request for a 25-year easement for AEP Ohio Transmission Company to allow power lines along a strip of land on University property at the Dublin campus, pending state approval.
- Accepted the financial statements and footnotes of the University’s audit results.
- Received the annual Intercollegiate Athletics Compliance report, which is provided each fall.
The full agenda for the Oct. 8-9 Board of Trustees meetings can be found on the Trustees’ website. The Board will also hold a special meeting of the Audit and Risk Management committee on Monday, Oct. 12, to meet with external auditors. The meeting will be streamed live at this link.