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Regents' size reduction, tuition spike right moves

Nov. 1, 2005

STAFF EDITORIAL

Baylor's Board of Regents announced Friday that it will reduce its size from 36 members to 16 over the next few years.

Each board member previously could serve up to three three-year terms, so the board won't renew terms until it's down to 16 members. The regents also dropped the maximum years of consecutive service from nine to six.

Will Davis, chairman of the board of regents, said the reduction in size will help the board communicate better, and that each member on the smaller board will have a stronger voice.

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Ben Humeniuk | Lariat staff
It's a good move for the regents.

In the 1990s, Baylor's board grew to one of the larger ones in Texas.

The smaller board will let the regents conduct their meetings more efficiently, so they can use their time to best serve the university.

The regents also voted to increase tuition and fees by 7.8 percent, raising the yearly total from $21,070 to $22,714. Although every tuition increase is painful, this one is appropriate.

Interim President William D. Underwood said he proposed the increase to the regents because he wants to raise faculty and staff salaries.

He also said the proposed Brooks Village would be impossible without that much of an increase.

The new tuition rate is a sacrifice, but our professors deserve a pay increase. Their pay rate has stayed nearly the same for the past several years, while the cost of living has continued to increase.

The raise and building of Brooks Village are major steps toward Baylor becoming a top-tier university.

The pay raise will help the university attract more of the very best and brightest of the academic world, maintaining an already solid faculty.

And the Brooks residential facility is a huge move forward in making Baylor a residential campus, one of the main objectives of Baylor 2012.

The North Village Residential Community has been successful, and university officials have planned additional improvements.

The regents are showing a genuine commitment to the betterment of the university and the goals of Baylor 2012.