I. Meeting the Legislative Mandate on National Eminence and Educational
has succeeded in meeting the 1988 legislative mandate to achieve
national eminence and to provide outstanding educational opportunities
for the citizens of Maryland.
2004 editions of U.S. News & World Report, The Princeton
Review, Kaplan’s The Unofficial Unbiased Insider’s Guide to
the 328 Most Interesting Colleges and Kiplinger’s Personal
Finance rank SU among the nation’s top public universities for
the second consecutive year. U.S. News included the
University as one of the Top Tier master’s institutions in the
North, where it rated fourth among public institutions of its kind.
- The Princeton Review
named SU among the top 20% of most connected campuses in the
United States, praising the access to technology SU offers its students.
B. Increased Growth, Selectivity, and Diversity
- SU’s enrollments have grown by 12.1% over the
six-year span from 1998-2003. Today we are a University of 6,816
students, predominantly undergraduates, 88% of whom are enrolled full
time. Because of budget reductions that resulted in few faculty
and staff positions being filled, we held enrollment steady between 2002
- Our diversity efforts
have been largely successful, and today the percentage of minority
students among the total student population has increased to 13.7% -- up
from 11.4% only two years ago. In 2002, SU enrolled the largest
minority class and the largest percentage of freshman African-American
students in institutional history. Moreover, SU surpassed the
retention rate benchmark for minority undergraduates. SU has the
highest percentage of African-American undergraduate students among its
Our selectivity has increased. Enrollment growth,
high demand by graduating high school seniors, and increasingly limited
classroom space have combined so that today Salisbury University is
highly selective in its admissions decisions. At approximately 50%, the
applicant-to-acceptance rate is also better than the average of both
SU’s performance and aspirational peers. Last year, we had over 5,500
applicants for a freshmen entering class of 950 students. Average
GPA scores for the entering class of 2003 were 3.48 and average SATs
were 1134, an increase of 8 points as compared to the entering fall 2002
Application/Enrollment Numbers and Mean SAT Scores (Fall 1999 – Fall 2003)
The percentage of Maryland residents attending SU is the
highest it has been since 1984, with all but 14.5% of our students
identified as Maryland residents. This is not necessarily a good
thing; the decreased number of out-of-state students (who pay the full cost
of education) has had a significant negative impact on our budget. In
addition, lower numbers of out-of-state students weakens the national
reputation that Salisbury University has earned over the last decade.
C. High Graduation Rates
- For eight years in a row, SU’s 4-, 5- and 6-year
graduation rates have been the highest in the University System of
Maryland. SU has had the highest four-year rate for 16 years running,
currently 14 points above the national average. Our 6-year rate at 70.8%
is 15.5 percentage points above the most recent national average of
D. Exceptional Peer Performance Indicators and High Accountability
Salisbury University compares exceptionally well to its 10
selected performance peers. SU has the highest SAT 25th/75th
percentile range, second-year retention rate, six-year graduation rate,
high school GPA, and percent of African-American undergraduate students
among its peers and the lowest freshmen applicant acceptance
rate. It also scores above the peer mean for percent of minority
undergraduates, six-year graduation rate among minority students, and
alumni giving rate.
below its peers on two significant variables: the percent of
faculty with terminal degrees (78% versus peer mean of 85%) and the
total state appropriation/FTES ($5,063 versus peer mean of $6,715).
Salisbury University Performance Peers
FY 2002 state Appropriation per FTES
One year after graduation, approximately 30% of SU
alumni enroll in graduate or professional study while 96% of
those who do not pursue further studies are employed. In
any given year, 96-98% of SU graduates rate the overall quality
of education received as satisfactory or very satisfactory.
Budget reductions have been immensely detrimental to SU’s
success on a number of accountability measures.
SU has begun to spiral backward in a vital academic objective – faculty
salary levels. With a benchmark of the 85th percentile
of AAUP peers, SU faculty salary levels have fallen to the 72nd
percentile for assistant professors, 62nd percentile for
associate professors, and 67th percentile for full
professors, making SU far less attractive to prospective faculty.
Further, despite the University’s best efforts, the percentage of core
faculty teaching lower-division courses has not surpassed 57%. Low
salary levels combined with a faculty courseload of 7.3 mean that
Salisbury University is not competitive in recruiting faculty, and
retention of faculty and staff is a growing problem. Employees are
leaving SU for better salaries and lower workload expectations at other
With fewer sections of required courses being offered,
students face the likelihood of greater time to degree in not being able
to select the right courses at the right time – a potential delay that
is costlier than any recent tuition increase. In addition, having
more students and fewer core faculty directly affects the advising load
and the amount of time that faculty have to provide personalized and
effective course and career guidance.
E. Record Grants and Sponsored Research Awards
F. Commitment to Meet Critical Workforce Shortages
- Over the last two years, SU faculty and staff
have submitted over $10 million dollars in grant proposals and have been
awarded over $4.5 million dollars in external funding that serve to
promote our strategic plan initiatives and expand the application of
knowledge and service in our community. We continue to increase
the number of collaborative grant proposals where faculty work with
community-based organizations and colleagues at other institutions.
- An SU $1.3 million five-year federal grant program
designed to help area teachers serve Limited English Proficient (LEP)
students has been honored as a national model and has received bonus funding
from the U.S. Department of Education. The accolades come at a time when
several counties on the Eastern Shore are experiencing growth rates above
40% for U.S. immigrants whose native language is not English. The
Accelerated Career Enhancement Master’s in English/Teaching English as a
Second Language Program serves a rural area with a large number of limited
- SU partnered with Wicomico County Public Schools to
procure an $814,000 federal history teacher enrichment grant, the largest
the county has received directly from the U.S. Department of Education.
Members of SU’s History Department and its Edward H. Nabb Research Center
for Delmarva History and Culture will work with local teachers to develop
classroom history curricula.
- The number of teacher education graduates has increased
37.6% over the last four years, from 197 graduates to 271. In fall
2003, SU had 1,255 students majoring in education. Lacking
adequate facilities and space to greatly expand its teacher education
programs, the University has submitted its program justification for a
new Teacher Education and Technology Complex for which we have received
planning money for FY2004. We are pleased to learn that $3 million
dollars for the second part of the planning money for this desperately
needed building is in the Governor’s capital budget for 2005.
However, construction money has been postponed until FY2007, which will
delay the opening of the building by at least a year. This is very
disappointing and will have a direct effect on our ability to train and
graduate additional teachers.
- One in four of Maryland’s 2003-04 County Teachers of the
Year call SU their Alma Mater. They include State Teacher of the Year Aaron
Deal of Wicomico County. SU is also the Alma Mater of 2004 Maryland School
Nurse of the Year Penny Makuchal, 2004 Maryland Assistant Principal of the
Year Patricia Adkins, and 2003 Washington Post
Distinguished Educational Leadership Award in Frederick County recipient
- Since 1999, there has been a 51.4% increase in nursing
graduates at SU. In fall 2003, SU had 341 students majoring in
nursing. Salisbury University’s nursing programs recently received the
highest possible rating during an accreditation visit from the American
Association of Colleges of Nursing’s Commission on Collegiate Nursing
Education, securing accreditation for the maximum period of five years.
- There has also been an 81.8% increase in information
technology graduates since 1999. Today, SU has 261 students majoring
in information technology.
G. Outstanding Athletic Successes
- SU’s athletics teams celebrated two
NCAA national championships in 2003, one in men’s lacrosse and one in
field hockey. In addition, SU had the second highest number of
student-athletes named to the 2003 Capital Athletic Conference
- Salisbury University is ranked 14th
of 420 Division III athletic programs in the nation.