Message from the provost on the 2023-24 consolidated budget
I’m writing to share with you a few thoughts on McMaster’s consolidated budget for 2023-24 which was approved by the Board of Governors earlier today.
I’m pleased that careful planning and prudent spending across the university have resulted in a positive financial position at a time when Ontario universities face challenges due to decreased international enrolment and the ongoing tuition and grants freeze. The budget shows a modest surplus of $8.2 million excluding items considered one-time.
While I believe it will take time and work by all to manage the pressures faced by the university sector, my goal as chief budget officer continues to be to ensure that McMaster’s budget effectively supports the institutional vision and aspirations of our community of researchers, scholars, teachers, learners and staff.
Investments over the next year will support teaching track and other faculty renewal, further advance research priorities, teaching innovation, supporting an increase in the funding minimums for graduate students as one of the early recommendations from the Task Force on Graduate Funding, as well as our accelerated decarbonization plans.
In addition to drawing down on our reserves and carefully planning capital projects, modernizing processes, utilizing technology and other measures to contain costs and continuing to be cautious when considering financial commitments will be critically important in our ability to invest in institutional and Faculty priorities.
I am confident that we can maintain our position of surplus. We have a well-established history of strong fiscal management at the university. This was clearly demonstrated throughout the COVID-19 pandemic when leaders across the university used prudence and innovative solutions to manage their budgets.
Today, McMaster is one of only four universities in Ontario to have met all annual financial health indicators in the last five years, according to a report by the provincial Auditor General.
I recognize our academic, financial and administrative leaders for their ongoing willingness to work together, as one university, to continue steering us in the right fiscal direction and supporting our students.
Thank you again for your many contributions and for your ongoing dedication to excellence at McMaster.
Provost and Vice-President (Academic)