During the meeting, which was conducted virtually for the first time, the Regents approved the university’s fiscal year 2021 budget. For the third straight year, the budget holds tuition and mandatory fees flat for Norman campus programs. Additionally, no online fees will apply for courses that have been moved online due to COVID-19.
“Holding our tuition and mandatory fees flat on the Norman campus for three consecutive years speaks directly to our commitment to providing academic excellence while remaining affordable and accessible,” said OU President Joseph Harroz Jr.
The approved budget absorbs a 3.95% reduction in state appropriation funding, supports new regular faculty hires and research needs, provides funding for the Clean and Green initiative to enhance cleaning on all three campuses, and increases funding for diversity and inclusion.
The board also approved the installation of 2,300 antimicrobial devices for the residence hall towers on the Norman campus. Every room in Adams, Couch and Walker Centers will be equipped with a wall-mounted Synexis® Sphere device, which continuously produces Dry Hydrogen Peroxide (DHP™) to reduce viruses, bacteria and fungi in occupied spaces. Installation will begin in August.
“Adding the state-of-the-art Synexis Sphere devices to each of the rooms in our residence hall towers is part of a comprehensive effort to provide students the cleanest practical campus living environment,” Harroz said. “These devices, along with our university-wide Clean and Green initiative to enhance cleaning protocols, are two of the ways we are carefully preparing for our return to the in-person OU experience.”
The Synexis Sphere works by converting humidity and oxygen naturally present in the air into DHP, which can flow to the most out-of-reach areas of a space and attach to microorganisms to naturally break them down. DHP has the added benefit of reducing odor and repelling insects.
The board also considered the addition of an online delivery option for the MBA program, making a critical professional OU degree accessible to an even broader segment of students. The proposed program will now go before the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education for final approval.
The board will next meet at its retreat in July.
About the University of Oklahoma
Founded in 1890, the University of Oklahoma is a public research university located in Norman, Oklahoma. OU serves the educational, cultural, economic and health care needs of the state, region and nation. For more information visit www.ou.edu.