By Philip L. Dubois
Chancellor, UNC Charlotte
UNC Charlotte’s interest in the bond issue is a proposed $90 million science facility that is crucial to ensuring our continuing ability to respond to ever-increasing demand for enrollment among well-qualified freshmen and transfer students.
For UNC Charlotte, there is definitely a sense of urgency concerning this bond initiative.
- Enrollment at UNC Charlotte has grown by 142 percent since the current science building (Burson) was built in 1985.
- UNC Charlotte accounts for more than 61 percent of the enrollment growth in the entire UNC system from the fall of 2009 to the fall of 2015.
- More than 50 percent of our students with declared majors are in STEM-related fields, and 15,000 students take laboratory courses each year.
The new science facility is crucial to ensuring continued growth and to meet strong demand for talent by Charlotte region employers.
The business case for the bond package is straightforward and strong: NO tax increase is needed to pay for the bonds, the debt service level is below the recommended amount to maintain the state’s triple-A bond rating, interest rates are at historic lows, and the costs of construction will surely be less today than tomorrow.
Investments in the Charlotte region include $40 million for seven community colleges and funding for improvements at three popular state parks: Crowder’s Mountain, Morrow Mountain and Lake Norman State Park.1
1 Excerpted from: https://issuu.com/unc_charlotte/docs/magazine-q1-2016/1, p. 2.