SUTRA Contract Course
The following are the administrative procedures applicable to State University Tuition Reimbursable Account (SUTRA) contract courses. They should serve as a companion document to the 12/2/96 Revised Policy and Guidelines memorandum sent to campus presidents by William Anslow. As is the case with all university degree programs and advanced certificates these courses may require an academic review by the curriculum committee, Provost, President and SUNY System Administration—according to and consistent with all pertinent local and SUNY policies, procedures and regulations.
Overview of Process
The attached flowchart is a visual representation of the administrative steps for getting a SUTRA program proposal approved, allocated, registered and billed appropriately. The second file is a one-page form that must be completed and included as part of the program proposal. In order to expedite the process all the requested information should be provided.
- Flowchart (MS Word doc)
SUTRA Form (MS Excel Spreadsheet)
The process begins with a department identifying a new credit-bearing program, which is consistent with SUNY’s SUTRA contract course program guidelines. Currently those guidelines state that SUTRA contract courses for credit may enroll as many students as is provided in the contract providing:
- The instructional activity must be contracted and paid for by a third party (a corporation, State agency, union, etc.)
- The enrollment in the designated course(s) or section(s) must be restricted to individuals specified in the contract through an affiliation with the third party.
- All costs of the program must be charged to the contracting third party and rates must be set at the greater of regular tuition or the total per student cost incurred by the program, including direct instructional costs, support costs, overhead charges, and fringe benefits. An exception is made for programs designed for “in-service” teachers, in which student rates may be limited to total per student costs as defined above.
During the March to June period of the prior year the Dean’s Office associated with the department initiating the proposal will be responsible for submitting it to the respective offices of the Provost or VP for HSC for approval of the program—or approving it themselves if that authority has been delegated to them. That proposal should include the standard SUTRA third party contractual agreement, the one-page SUTRA form, an allocation worksheet estimating enrollment and revenue, and also a projection of the expenses to be incurred in offering the program. The department may consult with Procurement to development the agreement. The output of this consultation is the contract, which the department should incorporate in their submission to their VP area. When the program is reviewed and approved by the VP, the VP area then submits it to the Budget Office for review and to ensure that the program qualifies as a SUTRA program and that the tuition and fees contained in it are appropriate. After this step is complete, the Budget Office will send the package to Procurement for signature.
The agreement must be signed by the third party and a representative of the University Procurement Department for the University. If any substantive changes are made to the standard format other than course, department and program fee—the Dean’s office must contact Legal Counsel to discuss the appropriateness of the change. The contract must include a statement that if the associated tuition rate increases or decreases the program fee may be adjusted accordingly. Copies of the finalized contract with signatures should be sent by Procurement to Budget, Accounting, the vendor and Offices of the Provost and HSC (as appropriate) as soon as they are received on campus. Procurement will also notify the Bursar and Registrar’s offices when a contract is signed.
In order to receive consideration as part of the campus’ budgeting plan for the upcoming year a description of the program (along with copies of the preliminary or final contracts) and properly completed account request and allocation worksheets should be sent to the respective offices of the Provost or VP HSC who will submit them to the Accounting and Budget Offices for review and funding approval prior to June 1st of every year. The Budget Office will then submit the allocation request package to the System Administration Budget Office for review and approval. Once System Administration approves the proposal, the Budget Office will contact the vice presidential area notifying them that the program will be funded. The Accounting office will then establish a SUTRA account and distribute the allocation necessary to support the program.
It should be noted that the program fee, identified in the allocation worksheet, must include charges sufficient to cover tuition, and all non-waived fees. Note that courses offered during regular academic hours will also be subject to Student Health and Student Activity Fees. Courses after 5:00 p.m. or on Saturday or Sunday are exempt from the Health and Student Center fees (and possibly the transportation and technology fees). If the SUTRA contract course provider does not feel that the students should be subject to certain fees, the department should contact the appropriate administrative offices regarding a possible waiver of them. If a waiver is granted, this information must be submitted to Financial Aid, Registrar, Bursar and Accounting using the “SUTRA” e-mail list.
Contact: Deborah Marcus
The Procurement Department will work with the Dean’s office to ensure that a properly executed contract exists for all third party entities.
Contact: Cathy Ribando
The Budget office will review and submit approved proposals received from each vice presidential area to the System Administration Budget Office.
Contact: Heather Montague
The Provost’s Office will review SUTRA proposals for Provostial units and request new accounts and allocation from Accounting.
Office of the Vice President for Health Sciences
Contact: John Riley
The Office of the Vice President for Health Sciences will review proposals for HSC units and request new accounts and allocation from Accounting.
Contact: Kate Larsen, Kathleen Diehl
The Accounting office will work with the Budget office to review proposed programs and to establish and allocate a unique SUTRA account for each approved contract course request.
Legal Counsel Office
Contact: Susan Blum
The Legal Counsel office is available to review SUTRA contracts with third party entities for both standard formats and special formats.
The department/vice presidential area must prepare a student roster for each contract course and include the following information: course number, course name, section, room number, third party contractor, student names, social security number, and credits. The student rosters for each program should be routed to the central offices listed below using the SUTRA e-mail distribution list. Please include the one-page SUTRA form so that the courses and be identified with the correct SUTRA program.
To appropriately record SUTRA enrollments, departments must notify the Student Accounts Office of SUTRA sections, and Student Accounts codes these sections in PeopleSoft to eliminate student billing and permit identification of SUTRA students in campus enrollment counts.
For new students starting in the fall semester the SUTRA roster must be provided to the central offices no later than the first day of the semester. For continuing students, that roster must be provided no later than August 1st for fall semester and no later than December 1st for spring semester. For courses that start after the semesters have begun, or in between semesters, student rosters should be routed to the SUTRA e-mail distribution list prior to the first day of classes.
SUTRA enrollments are established in the official snapshot enrollment count taken by the Office of Institutional Research after 15 class days, or in the supplementary enrollment counting procedure for sections not on the regular semester schedule. These enrollments are reported to SUNY in the Student Data File and CASA and used by the Budget Office when preparing tuition revenue projections for the campus.
Listed below are the central office contacts and the responsibilities connected with the registration process.
Office of Records (Registrar)
Contact: Diane Bello
Roster information will be used to identify SUTRA contract courses, course numbers and room numbers so they can be excluded from the course-offering schedule.
Contact: Shaukat Malik
The DoIT Data Warehouse Group selects SUTRA section information from the university's student information system (Oracle / PeopleSoft) to report SUTRA contract course enrollment to SUNY's SIRIS System.
Contact: Tom Farabaugh, Karen Shumar
The roster information will be used to assist the Accounting and Budget Offices in performing revenue projection/collection analyses.
Department administrators have the capability of registering contract course students on-line. Students need to be “quick admitted” through the School of Professional Development (for graduate level students) or the Undergraduate Admissions office (for undergraduate level students) BEFORE attempting to register. Students are not to register for themselves. Any and all changes made to a student’s registration status must be communicated to the central offices, via e-mail, immediately. At the time of registration, it is expected that all tuition and fees will have been paid by the third party. The Bursar’s Office, working in conjunction with the Accounting Office will ensure that tuition bills paid by the third party are credited to the students’ accounts so that they are not directly billed.
If eligible employees receive waivers, funds will not be reimbursed to the SUTRA contract course account. Waivers do not represent payments to the University so no reimbursement will be made to the account.
Contact: Tom Farabaugh, Karen Shumar
Accounting will assist in ensuring that collected third party revenue from the SUTRA programs are credited to the appropriate SUTRA accounts and that the student accounts receivables for the non-waived charges are credited appropriately. These transactions are necessary to prevent students from receiving bills.
It should be noted that tuition revenue will not be transferred into a SUTRA account until it has first been deposited into the university’s general fund (SUIF). In essence, cash will not be transferred until it has been collected—all accounts receivables will remain with the SUTRA programs. As with all other IFR accounts if the revenue collected is insufficient to support the expenses associated with the operations of the program the resulting cash deficit will be the responsibility of the Provost or the Vice President for Health Sciences as appropriate. Those deficits will have to be addressed in accordance with the campus’ IFR deficit policy.
Contact: Mara Green
The Bursar’s office will be responsible for applying the funds received into the proper accounts. No revenue should remain undeposited for more than one week. As this is a third party contract it is mandatory that payment be made by that third party to the campus—direct payments from enrollees in the course will not be permitted. When approved SUTRA student rosters are received by the Bursar’s Office revenue transfers will be made from the associated SUTRA accounts crediting the students’ accounts so that no bills will be sent out to those students. If the revenue from the third party has not been received at that time the SUTRA account may then be left with a cash deficit.
Contact: Heather Montague
The Provost’s Office will work with Accounting to ensure that collected third party revenue from Provostial SUTRA programs are credited to the appropriate SUTRA accounts and that the student accounts receivables for the non-waived charges are credited appropriately.
- Department identifies a new credit bearing program.
- The department prepares a program proposal that includes a draft of the third party contractual agreement, the one-page SUTRA form, an allocation worksheet estimating enrollment and an account request form. The department may consult with Procurement to draft the contractual agreement.
- Department submits proposal to VP and/or Dean for approval.
- When the VP approves the program, it is then submitted to the Budget Office for review and to determine that the program qualifies as SUTRA and that tuition and fee charges are appropriate.
- The program is approved.
- The package is submitted to Procurement for signature. Procurement sends signed copies to Budget, Accounting, the vendor, and the respective offices of the Provost or VP HSC. Procurement also notifies Bursar and Registrar of the signed contract.
- The Budget Office submits the program request to System Administration for review and approval.
- The Accounting Office works with the Budget Office to establish and allocate the SUTRA account.
- Upon receiving a notification of approval from System Administration the Budget Office will notify the VP area and other administrative offices. Accounting will then establish and fund the SUTRA account.