University Planning

Affordability and Financial Strength - Graphical Representation
Fiscal Year 2010 Performance Report - December 18, 2009 Update

We invite you to take advantage of our interactive dashboard presentation. The charts below represent how well we are achieving the progress desired in each of the  performance indicators associated with the category of Affordability and Financial Strength.

Links are also provided to enable you to see a tabular representation of the data where you can sort the information by various attributes to enable you to further explore the data.

And remember, you can use the "breadcrumbs" near the top of this section to retrace your steps or you can use the navigation menu to the left to explore features other than our Affordability and Financial Strength indicators.

 

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Affordability and Financial Strength Progress

Western Illinois University has a strong history and commitment to maintaining cost predictability and affordability. From the time of application at the senior year of high school until college graduation, the student could have experienced four tuition and fee increases. However, Western’s Cost Guarantee assumes no cost increases for four year once the student is enrolled. When dividing the Cost Guarantee over the students four years, Western has kept the all costs increases below the average increase in the Higher Education Price Index.

graph of All Costs, Higher Education Price Index, and State Appropriation Increases

 

With limited cost increases, the percent of students graduating from Macomb with loans decreased during 2009, and the average debt load of these graduates increased by only $295 or 1.7 percent.

graph of Percent of Students with Loans graph of Average Debt Load of Graduates

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Macomb Campus is ranked ninth lowest (of 13) in the percent of graduating students with loans. The average debt load of these graduates is the ninth lowest.

graph of WIU-Macomb Peer Group Percent of Students with Loans graph of WIU-Macomb Peer Group Average Debt Load of Graduates

 

Compared to peer institutions, the Quad Cities Campus has the lowest percent of graduating students with loans. Furthermore, the average debt load of these students is the lowest for the five institutions reporting data.

graph of WIU-Quad Cities Peer Group Percent of Students with Loans graph of WIU-Quad Cities Peer Group Average Debt Load of Graduates

 

In maintaining commitments to affordability, it is important to note a fundamental change in the state financing of Illinois public higher education. Annual state operating appropriations are below Western’s all costs increases and the Higher Education Price Index. This, coupled with unfunded state mandates, has made the University increasing reliant on University Income Fund. State appropriations now account for less than one-half of the University’s annual general revenue appropriation.

graph of Change in University Income Sources graph of Change in University Income Sources

 

With conservative fiscal management, Western Illinois University contains costs and provides the resource base to support simultaneous advancement of the academic mission and service operations of the University.

The following financial ratios described in Strategic Financial Analysis for Higher Education (6th Edition) were used to determine if the institutional resource base is strengthening and supporting the goals and priorities of the University. Through conservative fiscal management, the University has improved it financial strength.

The University’s primary reserve ratio demonstrates financial strength. A negative or decreasing trend over time would have indicated a weakening financial condition. The net operating revenue shows that Western has operated with a surplus in five of the last six years, therefore enabling the University to carry forward funds in conjunction with limitations established in Illinois statutes for public institutions. The viability ratio has also significantly improved since 2003, giving the University additional expendable net assets to satisfy debt obligations. While the return on net assets ratio is quite volatile and sensitive to inflationary and other economic conditions, including the recent recession, Western Illinois University maintains a constant return on net assets ratio.

graph of University Financial Strength Measures

 

Western is committed to efficiently allocating resources. Between Fiscal Years 2004 and 2008, the University remained below the statewide average on the instructional costs per credit hour.

graph of Instructional Costs per Credit Hour

CSU=Chicago State University, EIU=Eastern Illinois University, GSU=Governors State University, ISU=Illinois State University, NEIU=Northeastern Illinois University, NIU=Northern Illinois University, SIU-C=Southern Illinois University Carbondale, SIUE=Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, UIC=University of Illinois Chicago, UIS=University of Illinois Springfield, UIUC=University of Illinois Urbana/Champaign, WIU=Western Illinois University, Avg=Statewide Average

 

Western also maintains administrative costs per credit hour that are below the statewide average. The five-year increase in the administrative and support cost per credit hour at Western was $13.15, which is below the statewide average increase of $16.22.

graph of Administrative Costs per Credit Hour

CSU=Chicago State University, EIU=Eastern Illinois University, GSU=Governors State University, ISU=Illinois State University, NEIU=Northeastern Illinois University, NIU=Northern Illinois University, SIU-C=Southern Illinois University Carbondale, SIUE=Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, UIC=University of Illinois Chicago, UIS=University of Illinois Springfield, UIUC=University of Illinois Urbana/Champaign, WIU=Western Illinois University, Avg=Statewide Average

 

graph of Increase in Staff Head Count 2004 vs. 2008

Limited staff growth helps to control administrative costs. The percent increase in the total number of staff at Western was below the average of all other Illinois public universities. Staff headcounts are reported in the table below as there is not published data for non-faculty staff years. Headcount serves as a proxy for staff years as most staff are on a 12-month contract and would be counted as one staff year.

 

 

 

 

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