Dear Pitt Community Members:
Earlier today, members of our Board of Trustees—acting through the Board’s Executive Committee—convened and approved the University of Pittsburgh’s operating and capital budgets for Fiscal Year 2022.
It is important to recognize that these budgets follow an exceptionally disruptive year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Our strategies, enacted over the last budget cycle to mitigate the financial repercussions of these disruptions, have included:
- Holding tuition and room and board flat.
- Freezing faculty and staff salaries.
- Offering a voluntary early retirement option to faculty and staff.
- Curtailing all nonessential hiring and travel.
- Pausing most construction projects.
- Enacting one-time unit-level budget cuts of 5%, which generated an extra $44 million in savings to cover COVID-19 costs related to testing, PPE acquisition, safely populating and depopulating campus, and more.
- Receiving significant federal COVID-19 relief, with more than half distributed as direct grants to students.
Despite these historic disruptions, Pitt’s operating and capital budgets for Fiscal Year 2022 represent our institution’s first steps toward a new, post-pandemic normal and a return to in-person instruction this fall. The approved budgets balance our efforts to move on from last year’s budget disruption and begin to engage in a fuller recovery.
Some key highlights:
- Our operating budget is set at $2.6 billion, up 7.2% from last year’s operating budget of $2.4 billion.
- Our capital budget is set at $351 million, 150% larger than last year’s COVID-19-reduced total of $140 million.
- Our projected research base is $908 million, in line with last year’s research base. This is the first time in Pitt’s history that our projected research base budget exceeds $900 million.
- Our operating budget includes a modest pay pool to increase the salaries of eligible faculty and staff. A forthcoming email, sent to employees from Chief Financial Officer Hari Sastry and Senior Vice Chancellor for Business and Operations Dave DeJong, will include further information on these increases.
- Tuition will increase for the 2021-2022 academic year. On our Pittsburgh campus, tuition will increase by 2.5% for in-state undergraduate and all graduate students and 4.5% for out-of-state undergraduates. Two exceptions:
- All in-state and out-of-state undergraduate engineering students will be kept at the base rates rise of 2.5%.
- All undergraduates in the School of Computing and Information will see rates rise by an additional 2%, resulting in increases of 4.5% for in-state and 6.5% for out-of-state students.
On our regional campuses, tuition will increase by 1.5% for both in-state and out-of-state students. As in recent years, we devote much of this increase to funding financial aid for students.
- Room and board costs will increase. Dining costs will rise across all campuses by approximately 3%. On-campus housing costs will increase by approximately 5% on our Pittsburgh campus and between 2% to 4% on our regional campuses.
- To balance our operating budget, we have adopted a permanent 1% budget reduction, effective across the University.
Both budgets—as always—are the product of many difficult decisions and tough conversations. I am extremely grateful for our leaders in Harrisburg, who once again voted to support Pennsylvania’s students, families and future by passing our annual appropriation bill. I also want to thank the University Planning and Budgeting Committee for tackling the many difficult decisions associated with these budgets, and I remain incredibly proud of Pitt students, faculty and staff for not just persevering but prospering during these challenging times.
I am excited for the new academic year, the new opportunities it will bring and the chance to see students, faculty and staff continue advancing our university’s mission—creating and leveraging knowledge for society’s gain—together.