PAC discusses finances, ongoing discussions in annual press conference

Biola student media outlets attended a press conference on Thursday afternoon to hear the latest information from the Presidential Administrative Council.

Elizabeth Sallie and Julia Henning

Correction: The #MakingItMatter hashtag was previously identified as #MakeItMatter due to misinformation. The Chimes regrets this error.

 

Each member of the Presidential Administrative Council offered the latest information from their field at the annual press conference for student media on Oct. 4.

Alumni giving back 

Greg Balsano, vice president of University Services, announced that the ditch being dug in front of the Fireplace Pavilion is for a “babbling brook” — the class gift from the seniors of 2012. The water feature will include a waterfall and sit next to the Pavilion, 2011’s class gift.

Finances and money

Irene Neller, vice president for University Communications and Marketing, said that Biola would have new billboards going up in the Southland on Monday, featuring the name of Biola's undergraduate marketing campaign — “Making It Matter” — as a hashtag. Neller hopes that the boards, which will be posted from Valencia to North Orange County, will drive traffic to Biola’s #MakeItMatter twitter feed; the feed will direct them to resources about the university and information on alumni.

Biola tuition increased 3.6 percent while financial aid increased approximately 10 percent for this academic year, according to Michael Pierce, vice president of Business and Financial Affairs. This is in contrast with the national averages — tuition increased 12.4 percent while student aid increased 6.2 percent — according to the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities reports.

This is the second year that Biola has set aside surplus funds for need-based scholarships, according to vice president of enrollment Greg Vaughn. Out of that, about $650,000 has already been distributed this year. The board now mandates that 25 percent of all surplus funds will go to student financial aid at the end of each fiscal year.

Ongoing discussions

The Board of Trustees met on campus for the first meeting of the academic year Sept. 13 and 14, according to a letter from president Barry Corey summarizing the meeting. The Board hosted student panels to share their perspectives in three areas: spiritual development and evangelism, sexual identity and university academic funding.

Chris Grace, vice president for Student Development, University Planning and Information Technology, announced plans for upcoming conversations on human sexuality. In October, a faculty and staff panel will discuss the statement on human sexuality Biola released in May. The panel will include Elizabeth Hall, professor of psychology, Richard Langer, professor of biblical studies, and Scott Rae, chair of the department of philosophy of religion and ethics. In November, there will be a second faculty and staff panel discussion to discuss faculty perspectives on human sexuality. Provost David Nystrom will moderate the panel. On Dec. 5 and 6, Mark Yarhouse of Regent University will come speak in a series of miniature seminars concerning human sexuality, including three chapels.

Academics

Nystrom announced the creation of the Center for Christianity Culture and the Arts which Biola can fund for the next three years thanks to a $750,000 grant from the Fieldstead Foundation — an organization run by Howard and Roberta Ahmanson. Roberta Ahmanson was visionary-in-residence for last year’s Year of the Arts.

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