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SRU Good News for April 27, 2012

TIME magazine recognizes SRU’s performance funding success

TIME magazine recognized Slippery Rock University’s performance funding success in this week’s issue citing the University for meeting a number of Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education initiatives that helped increase student success and the University’s graduation rate, as part of a national trend.

In a story headlined “Will New Funding Rules Improve Dismal University Graduation Rates?,” SRU’s success in improving graduation rates and retention are featured.

William Williams, SRU provost and vice president for academic affairs, is among those interviewed for the report that calls SRU the possible “poster child for a resurgent idea called ‘performance funding,’ which pays public universities to meet goals set by increasingly results-conscious state legislatures.”

“Under Pennsylvania’s performance-funding formula, Slippery Rock has earned as much as $1.5 million a year more from the state for improving its outcomes than it would have otherwise,” Williams said. “Whether you like this method or not, the purpose was to drive up the quality of this institution. It’s what we should have been about anyway.”

John Cavanaugh, PASSHE chancellor, and the PASSHE board of governors implemented the Performance Funding Plan that rewards PASSHE universities that meet or exceed the pre-determined performance goals.

The TIME story examines how performance funding is affecting colleges and universities across the U.S., and how other states are turning to such pay-for-performance plans.

SRU is credited with improving graduation rates, in part, by being more selective in its student admissions, by adding programs that help eliminate obstacles to student success, lowering course credit requirements for graduation, improving the quality and diversity of the faculty, adding tutoring programs and for its residence hall programs that cluster students in living-learning centers by college to help facilitate discussions, tutoring and overall interest in academics.

The full story is available at:,8599,2113097,00.html