Showing posts with label Administrative and Financial Services. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Administrative and Financial Services. Show all posts

Friday, December 22, 2017

FAMU officials say improved Moody’s outlook reflects university’s financial strength

On Tuesday, Moody’s Investors Service announced its decision to change its outlook for FAMU from “negative” in 2016 to now “stable.” The outlook revision incorporates anticipated improvement in operating performance and revenue growth with reduced enrollment volatility combined with gains in base state funding. FAMU is closing out 2017 with an increase in fundraising and its highest enrollment increase since 2014 at 9,913 students.

“Through the collective efforts of the Board of Trustees, FAMU Foundation, University administrators, staff, faculty, student leaders, and, of course, our committed alumni and friends, we are working tirelessly to ensure the financial well-being and continued growth of this great institution,” said President Larry Robinson. “We are grateful that Moody’s recognizes our efforts and grateful to everyone who has played a role in this positive outcome for FAMU.”

Sunday, April 09, 2017

Audit shows Mangum, and friends, racked up more than $3.2m in p-card charges in final year

In the year leading up to her ouster former President, Elmira Mangum issued more than 127 FAMU purchase cards to employees including her Chief of Staff Jimmy Miller,  two executive assistants to the president, and the wife of the executive assistant to the president, who racked up more than $3.2 million in charges.  

Last August it was reported that Miller had racked up over $150,000 in charges on his FAMU issued purchasing card. Miller's charges mostly covered airline travel, taxi & car services and rental cars.  Records also showed that Magnum amassed over $81,000 in travel, which included expensive limousine rides and stays at the Waldorf-Astoria and Ritz-Carlton hotels.

Mangum is expected to return to the FAMU faculty after a one year sabbatical.

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Cassidy hasn’t accepted job reassignment, criticizes $42,000 pay cut

VP George Cotton, former VP Dale Cassidy, and President Elmira Mangum
at the 2015 Faculty and Staff Endowment Breakfast
Back on Tuesday, March 15, FAMU Chief of Staff Jimmy Miller sent Board of Trustees (BOT) members a memo about a change in the chief financial officer/vice-president for finance and administration position.

Dale Cassidy current vice president for Finance and Administration has been reassigned to serve as the University’s chief ethics and compliance officer,” Miller wrote.

But The FAMUan reports that “Cassidy has yet to accept the position, where he will be making $42,000 less in comparison to his previous position.”

The student newspaper also quoted Cassidy making a statement that was critical of the pay cut.

Friday, March 11, 2016

Graham blasts FAMU administrators for nearly causing university to lose $2.3M

At the Thursday meeting of the FAMU Board of Trustees (BOT), Student Body President Tonnette S. Graham criticized administration officials for nearly causing the university to lose its ability to spend $2.3M in student fees.

“Why did we almost lose $2.3M in CITF funds last month?” she asked during the BOT discussion of facilities.

The Capital Improvement Trust Fund (CITF) comes from student fees under Florida Statutes 1009.24. It states that: “An increase in the fee may occur only once each fiscal year and must be implemented beginning with the fall term. The Board of Governors shall adopt regulations and timetables to implement the fee.”

CITF money is used for campus facilities projects.

Monday, February 09, 2015

FAMU cuts ribbon on new campus Recycling Center

Last week, FAMU officials gathered to celebrate the grand opening of the new campus Recycling Center located on Gamble Street.

The Recycling Center will manage and encourage the collection, sorting, and processing of recyclables, such as paper, cardboard, plastic bottles, and aluminum cans. It houses a cardboard baler and provides workspace for student interns and volunteers to assist with the recycling program.

FAMU President Elmira Mangum and Vice-President for Finance and Administration Dale Cassidy jointly cut the ribbon on the new facility. They were joined by the FAMU Environmental Health and Safety Department, FAMU Sustainability Institute, community leaders, faculty, staff, and students.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

“Orange Room” becomes home to new FAMU Chick-fil-A Express

Yesterday, Venom welcomed another nationally-recognized mascot to the FAMU campus.

The black-and-white spotted Chick-fil-A cow, wearing an “Eat Mor Chikin” placard, paid a special visit the University Commons to attend the ribbon-cutting for FAMU’s new Chick-fil-A Express.

FAMU President Elmira Mangum, Chief Financial Officer Dale Cassidy, and Metz Culinary Management representatives were on hand to celebrate the exciting new additional to the university’s dining services.

“I think it’s a really good thing. It shows that there’s a lot of progress at our university. I’m a senior and where we've come from since my freshman year, this is a really big step,” senior Kristyn Matthews, told WCTV-6.

Tuesday, September 09, 2014

Mangum selects new vice president of finance and administration

FAMU President Elmira Mangum has appointed Dale Cassidy to serve as vice president for Finance and Administration. Cassidy will assume his position in mid-October.

As the vice president for Finance and Administration, he will be responsible for the continued enhancement of the University’s budget, financial management, enterprise information technology, and accounting systems.

Cassidy has worked as a certified public accountant for nearly 30 years and has focused on higher education since 1991. He served as regional director of Education Advisory Services for PricewaterhouseCoopers and director of Internal Audit at both Tulane University and Hospital System and The University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston.

Prior to being appointed FAMU’s vice president for Finance and Administration, Cassidy served as vice president of Business Affairs at The University of Texas of the Permian Basis in Odessa. He directed the financial operation during a period where the university experienced an unprecedented 24 percent increase in enrollment and a 120 percent increase in the growth of the institution’s private endowment.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

FAMU celebrates grand opening of campus Starbucks

On Wednesday, FAMU celebrated the grand opening of the Starbucks in Coleman Memorial Library.

FAMU President Elmira Mangum, Student Body President Tonnette Graham, and officials from Metz Culinary Management gathered at the coffee shop’s new home on the library’s second floor to cut the ribbon.

Attendees at the ceremony were treated to door prizes and free samples from the Starbucks menu.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Starbucks in Coleman Library to kick off a new era for FAMU dining services

This fall, FAMU students and employees will find something new in Coleman Memorial Library
besides the latest book arrivals. Metz Culinary Management, the university’s newly-hired food services provider, is putting the finishing touches on a new Starbucks that will be located on the second floor.

The new Starbucks will replace the old Jazzman’s Café and will be more than three times larger than its predecessor. It is nearly complete, with the site awaiting final renovations related to the Starbucks brand concept as well as furniture.

Metz is also completing renovations to the old "Orange Room" where a Chick-Fil-A will open this fall.  It will replace the former Magic Johnson Sub Connection and WOW Café and Wingery eateries.

Metz began a five-year contract with FAMU on January 2, 2014, replacing Sodexo. According to a past article in The FAMUan, Metz will keep the Tropical Smoothie and Pizza Hut stores that Sodexo brought to campus. At the time of the article, it was also discussing the possibility of opening a T.G.I. Friday’s at FAMU. 

Saturday, December 28, 2013

FAMU names Joyce Ingram new assistant vice-president for human resources

FAMU recently welcomed Joyce A. Ingram as its new assistant vice president for human resources
(HR). Ingram, whose appointment began Nov. 22, comes to FAMU after serving as an assistant vice president and chief HR and diversity officer at Florida State University (FSU) for more than 10 years.

While at FSU, Ingram was responsible for the development, administration and direction of the institution’s entire HR organization. In addition, she was charged with the development and implementation of FSU’s Diversity and Inclusion Initiative.

“I am excited about the opportunity to join the FAMU team and look forward to working with all members of the campus community in the delivery of high-quality HR services and systems to the organization,” Ingram said.

As she settles into her new position, one of Ingram’s priorities is ensuring that FAMU’s HR department serves as a strategic partner and collaborator with the university’s varied stakeholders. She envisions an HR team that will “strive to deliver HR systems, tools and services to Florida A&M University in a manner exemplifying professionalism, excellence, integrity, leadership, teamwork and with the utmost respect for diversity and inclusion.”

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

FAMU drops Sodexo, awards dining services contract to Metz

Jeff Metz, president and CEO of Metz Culinary Management
FAMU has parted ways with Sodexo, its longtime dining services provider. Effective January 2, 2014, Metz Culinary Management will begin running the food operations on FAMU’s campus.

“We are looking forward to a long-term partnership with FAMU that will transform the university’s dining services into one of the nation’s premier foodservice programs,” said Jeff Metz, President and CEO of Metz Culinary Management. “Students and faculty will start to see changes in the coming months as we upgrade services and facilities. We also have business relationships with many well-known national brands that we are excited to introduce to FAMU in the near future.”

Under the five-year agreement, Metz Culinary Management will employ 150 food service employees and initiate a number of facility enhancements and capital improvements. The dining locations that Metz will manage include the Residential Dining Facility (Café), Rattler’s Nest, Presidential Dining Room at the main campus as well as the eateries at the FAMU/FSU College of Engineering and College of Law.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

FDLE investigation fails to show that FAMU was in a financial crisis

The Florida Department of Law Enforcement's (FDLE) probe into the Marching 100’s finances ended anticlimactically last week. The investigation found some sloppy practices involving per diem payments and cash deposits in the band, but nothing that warranted criminal charges against any Marching 100 staffer. One university official outside of the band was charged for allegedly receiving $1,800 through bogus travel reimbursements.

The issue with per diem payments to dozens of non-students was already old news before the FDLE report was released. Back in May, then-President James H. Ammons announced that an internal review of Marching 100 documents found that 101 ineligible individuals were on the Fall 2012 roster. The university also acknowledged that the band administration had given many of them per diem dollars.

The FDLE reported that "a total of seventy-nine (79) of the individuals who received per diem were not, in fact, registered students of the University." It did not include an estimated grand total for the per diem funds.

Another section of the report found that ex-Director of Bands Julian E. White “failed to report the theft of the band dues to FAMU Police Department for approximately three (3) months after the theft was discovered. Statements from witnesses indicated that the amount of the stolen funds was $30,000 to $40,000. The funds consisted of cash, personal checks, money orders, and cashier’s checks. In Mr. White’s report to the FAMU Police Department, he stated that only $12,000 in cash was stolen.”

Those issues all needed to be addressed. But the FDLE did not find that any laws were broken in those cases. Its conclusion stated that there were breeches of university-level rules.

The Tallahassee Democrat's editorial board has depicted the FDLE's findings as proof that "Things were very wrong at Florida A&M."

The most serious issue in the FDLE report involved an estimated $40,000. The Democrat's editorial board members did not write that "things were very wrong" at Florida State University (FSU) when an internal audit showed that the construction manager for the Student Success Building "billed and the University paid $60,000 of questionable salary expenses."

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Hardee leaving FAMU for new job at Delaware State

FAMU Chief Financial Officer Teresa Hardee is leaving Florida’s only public historically black university to become the vice president of finance at Delaware State University. She tendered her letter of resignation on Sept. 5.

“It’s [Delaware State] a smaller institution and I’ve always wanted to be more intimately involved in all facets of higher education, not just the finances,” Hardee told The FAMUan. “How does finance really impact a student’s life, or faculty life? So I get to do a little more of that in a smaller setting.”

Back in 2007, Hardee was given the task of getting FAMU’s financial books in shape after a string of bad audits. FAMU had received its first ever qualified financial audits from the state in 2004-2005 and 2005-2006. FAMU had also gotten the worst operational audit in school history in 2006 with 35 findings.

During Hardee’s tenure at FAMU, the university went back to receiving unqualified annual financial statement audits. FAMU also went from having the highest number of operational audit findings in the State University System of Florida in 2006 to having some of the lowest numbers in 2008 and 2010.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

White: "They gave me a check for every name that I gave them"

FAMU's ex-Director of Bands Julian E. White continues to deny responsibility for failing to make sure every Marching 100 member was an eligible student.

White admits that he "missed a cue," but says it wasn’t his job to verify the enrollment status of band members before he submitted their names for per diem checks.

"They gave me a check for every name that I gave them, so those persons are qualified to receive the money," White said. "And that’s where we differ, the university and myself, differ."

FAMU’s recent internal review of Marching 100 documents found that 101 ineligible individuals were on White’s Fall 2012 roster.

White blames the senior administration for not verifying the enrollment status of each individual on his list.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Hardee should not tolerate foul, demeaning language from any trustee

Back in 2007, new FAMU President James H. Ammons asked Teresa Hardee to help him rescue FAMU’s accounting systems from the financial mess he inherited from the previous interim administration. Hardee and her staffers brought an end to FAMU’s three years of qualified state audits. That financial turn-around played a central role getting the university off probation with the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

But despite all Hardee has done to keep FAMU’s doors open, Chairman Chuck Badger has decided to work against her by bringing the Division of Administrative and Financial Services into his personal efforts to placate Gov. Rick Scott.

Badger appointed Scott’s go-to-trustee at FAMU, Rufus Montgomery, as the chairman of the budget and finance committee. That makes Rufus the board’s primary contact with Hardee.

Hardee has done nothing to deserve having to face constant conversations with someone as rude and insulting as Rufus. She should not let Rufus speak to her with any of the disrespectful language that has resulted in numerous public complaints against him.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Financial aid, advising, and housing key to FAMU's graduation rate strategy

For the past three years, FAMU's lower division students (those with fewer than 60 credit hours) have taken higher course loads than their peers at the University of Florida. This has set FAMU on the right path for a higher six-year graduation rate.

This important step forward did not happen by accident. It is the result of a carefully crafted strategy for making college more affordable for FAMU's students. FAMU's Divisions of University Relations, Student Affairs, Administrative and Financial Services, and Academic Affairs have all played very important roles in this process.

Fee breaks and more generous financial aid to encourage higher course loads

President James H. Ammons' administration has beefed up scholarships and rolled out bigger fee breaks to help students obtain more money for classes.

A big part of the increase in scholarship money has come from the Division of University Relations' ongoing efforts to rebuild the Industry Cluster, a major source of private giving. Alumni donations to the university foundation have also sharply risen since Ammons was appointed president.

The Division of Administrative and Financial Services also recommended new out-of-state fee breaks to the Board of Trustees (BOT). These fee breaks, which the BOT approved, are part of the university's efforts to help these students boost their course loads. FAMU awarded $2.7M in out-state-breaks in 2009-2010. That climbed to $3.8M in 2010-2011.

In 2009-2010, Chief Financial Officer Teresa Hardee and then-Student Body President Gallop Franklin, II successfully persuaded the BOT to waive the seven percent differential tuition increase for students who qualify for the need-based Florida Public Student Assistance Grant (FPSAG). That meant that FPSAG recipients only faced the mandatory six percent tuition hike required by the legislature, instead the total 15 percent increase placed on the majority of FAMU students.

These fee breaks and scholarships were complemented by U.S. President Barack Obama's leadership in increasing Pell Grant awards. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 boosted the maximum Pell Grant award by $500 to $5,350 for 2009-2010. The maximum award went up to $5,550 in 2010-2011 as a result of additional funds from the College Cost Reduction and Access Act.

Stronger advising and the expansion of on-campus housing

FAMU is working to maintain its success in boosting student course loads with additional initiatives that will save students money.

The Division of Academic Affairs led by Provost Cynthia Hughes-Harris has made more academic advisors available on campus and stepped up its requirement for students to meet with them on a regular basis. This helps prevent students from taking unnecessary courses that cost them lots of cash and slow down their path to graduation.

For example, FAMU is beginning to require most freshmen admitted through the profile assessment process to enroll in summer classes immediately after high school graduation. These students are being giving specialized advising during the summer months.

The Divisions of Student Affairs and Administrative and Financial Services are also working hard to expand on-campus housing. The university recently reopened Sampson & Young Halls, which added 208 beds and brought to total number up to 2,692. FAMU’s next priority is to complete its brand new Polkinghorne Village by 2013. That will add 800 more beds to campus and bring the total up to 3,492.

Former Vice-President of Student Affairs Roland H. Gaines and current Vice-President for Student Affairs William E. Hudson, Jr. have both stated that the expansion of on-campus housing will help improve FAMU’s six-year graduation rate. Campus housing rental rates are usually much cheaper than private-owned apartments. Students also save money by using campus meal plans and walking to class instead of driving. That leaves them with more dollars to spend on courses.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

FAMU bookstore unveils new look, expanded services

As the fall semester gets underway, FAMU students are finding expanded services and a "refreshed" look at the university bookstore.

Recent renovations in the bookstore include new decorative fixtures, countertops, and lighting, an expanded convenience food section and a larger selection of FAMU paraphernalia.

“The expansion of the convenience area has been very popular,” Bookstore Manager Angela Williams said. “Everyone that has come into our store loves the new look and we’re thrilled that we can offer our students more of what they want and need right here on our campus.”

The bookstore is now a full-service operation offering students textbook options that include new, used, rental ,and digital books.

Digital textbooks, which typically offer savings of up to 60 percent over new printed copies, are particularly useful in helping students cut down on book costs. Students can access the e-Textbooks they purchase through the Barnes & Noble’s free NOOKStudy application, which delivers them directly to PCs, Macs, iPads, and iPhones.

Monday, September 05, 2011

FAMU uses non-disciplinary action to resolve CFO work time issue

In a statement to The FAMUan, President James H. Ammons revealed that the university has executed “a non-disciplinary employment action” in response to the findings of an internal investigation concerning Chief Financial Officer Teresa Hardee’s use of business hours to travel to her out-of-town graduate school classes.

Hardee, who is pursuing an executive doctorate in higher education from the University of Pennsylvania, received permission from FAMU to attend Thursday through Saturday classes in Philadelphia. According to The FAMUan, the investigation resulted from an anonymous complaint that the amount of hours for which Hardee was approved “to travel to the University of Pennsylvania did not match the amount of time Hardee was approved to take leave.”

The problem stemmed from the fact that on her Wednesday travel days to Philadelphia, Hardee utilized a “work-from-home status.”

“I did not see the need to take annual leave for the days that I traveled to Pennsylvania to attend class the next day was because I was in fact working on FAMU business even while working from home on the Wednesdays in question,” Hardee said.

Hardee explained that her job requires her “to be on call virtually 24 hours a day.” She estimates that she has worked more than 4,000 hours above the standard 40-hour workweek since she arrived at FAMU in 2007.

After receiving the general counsel’s report on the matter, Ammons decided to rescind 34 hours of Hardee’s vacation time.

Ammons added in his statement to The FAMUan that Hardee is an “outstanding administrator who has provided strong leadership in her division” and that “she remains an outstanding member of my leadership team.”

Back in 2007, Hardee was given the task of getting FAMU’s financial books in shape after a string of bad audits. FAMU had received its first ever qualified financial audits from the state in 2004-2005 and 2005-2006. FAMU had also gotten the worst operational audit in school history in 2006 with 35 findings.

Since Hardee’s arrival at FAMU, the university has gone back to receiving unqualified annual financial audits. FAMU also went from having the highest number of operational audit findings in the State University System of Florida in 2006 to having some of the lowest numbers in 2008 and 2010.