While it may not be entirely shielded from these rough economic times, funding at Bradley remains stable.
During the 2010-11 school year, the MAP grant will be provided at the same amount it was this year, and the state is expected to continue funding the projects it currently supports.
Financial Assistance Director Dave Pardieck said MAP grant funding is business as usual.
“We’re heading toward the 2011 school year, and we have been getting our reimbursements relatively timely,” he said. “Next year, all indications are it will be awarded at the same level. While that can change, we do not expect it to.”
Pardieck said he does not expect another opposition to the grant like the one last November.
“There’s strong sentiment that what happened in the fall will not happen again. It’s still resonating.”
Pardieck said approximately 1,500 Bradley students receive the MAP grant annually.
“We aren’t expecting an increase in monetary amount,” he said. “But we aren’t expecting a decrease, either.”
Freshman family and consumer science major Ashley Pierce participated in the MAP grant rally in the fall.
“I went to the rally because I receive the MAP grant, and it is one of the reasons I am able to go to this school,” she said. “I think it should continue, and I think it should continue statewide. It’s something that a lot of students really need.”
Vice President for Business Affairs Gary Anna said Bradley is slightly more independent in its budget than state-funded public schools.
“We are a private institute, so we get more money from student tuition, gifts and grants,” he said. “We do have some state grants, and we watch those very carefully.”
Anna said the most notable state grant is for the Westlake Hall renovation.
“Without the state funding, we may have not been able to do it,” he said. “We have reasonable expectations that we will have the funding from the state to finish that project.”
Anna said while the university does have some help from state grants, Bradley is not subject to the same kind of reliability on the state that public universities are.
“We understand their concerns, but we are managing in a little different environment than they are,” he said.
Anna said while the school still receives generous donations, the economy has clearly taken its toll.
“Most donors have been very forthright in how they want to contribute, in some cases making alternate plans,” he said. “We can all relate to having to make individual choices, and it is hard to find someone who is not influenced by the economy. It certainly affects the university operationally.”
Anna said Bradley managed to cut back on spending $2 million dollars last year, but the main goal is to maintain education quality for the students.
“We want to make sure students have the quality education they expected when they got here,” he said. “We are trying to preserve the experience in the classroom. It’s not business as usual, but it hasn’t been business as usual for a long time.”