University of Oklahoma President Jim Gallogly continues to put the university’s financials under the microscope.
The university’s Cross Village project was revealed to cost $7.1 million a year, despite previous financial advisors saying OU would not incur any financial burdens from the project. From The Oklahoma Daily:
"Those people who said those things don't work at our university anymore, in fact, on the morning of July 2 they were no longer employees," Gallogly said. "I'll let you decide who that might be, but they did not explain we have those financial obligations."
This $7.1 million revelation adds to the university’s $900 million debt and serves as a reminder that not every dollar spent on campus is spent on education.
On the bright side, this is also another example of Gallogly’s vision to make the university more efficient and affordable. Just before Gallogly became president on July 1, OU’s budget was projected to have a $14.5 million operating loss.
In his short tenure thus far, Gallogly has found annual savings of $20 million, and tuition at OU was not raised for the first time since 2013. During that time, per pupil revenue from tuition and fees at OU grew by $2,257, or 29%.
Gallogly deserves credit for doing the tough work of giving his institution’s finances a hard look. This change in direction will be welcomed by many Oklahoma students and their families.