Board of regents to meet for the first time of spring semester


Megan Petzold/Iowa State Daily

Iowa State President Wendy Wintersteen speaks to the board about the new and different things Iowa State has begun to implement to make the school function better and more economically during the Board of Regents meeting Feb. 22.

Grace Bryant

The first Board of Regents meeting  of the school year will address financial plans and graduation and retention rates.

The Iowa Board of Regents will be meeting Feb. 27 and Feb. 28 in the Reiman Ballroom of the Alumni Center. The meeting is expected to begin Wednesday at 11:30 a.m. and conclude Thursday at 2 p.m. Both days will end following a closed session. 

The board will vote on “Iowa State University Capital Improvement Business Transactions,” which includes renovations to Hilton Coliseum and an expansion to the Vet Med building. The board has a recommendation to approve both measures.

“This project would renovate concessions, widen concourse corridors, upgrade the aging mechanical system and address deferred maintenance issues in the two elevators at Hilton Coliseum,” according to Board of Regent documents. “The estimated project budget of $25 million would be funded by Athletic Department Operations and Private Giving.”

The budget request for the Vet Med expansion amounts to $3,705,000.

The board will also look at how financial aid can be better distributed to its applicants.

According to the Access and Affordability Advisory Committee Report, Iowa has the highest student debt in the nation. Additionally, tuition rates continued to climb as this past summer, as the Board of Regents approved a four percent increase in tuition for residents and a 3.8 percent increase for nonresidents.

One solution they proposed was to “create and adequately fund a need-based state grant program dedicated to students attending Iowa public universities.” The idea is to encourage the low-income Iowa Resident audience to engage in higher education. 

The board will also discuss the Graduation and Retention Report. With steady retention rates above the national average, it is expected that the committee’s meeting Thursday will discuss ways to continue  this upward trend.