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Strategic Budget Initiative Update

June 14, 2022

To the Stony Brook University community,

As we celebrate the many accomplishments of our students, faculty, and staff for this year, I want to take a moment to update you on our progress on projects that were approved as part of the Strategic Budget Initiative (SBI) last May.

There were 16 major areas approved to move forward to implementation. These initiatives reflected SBI committee work focused on enhancing research, supporting academic program development, improving opportunities in the health sciences, reducing administrative burdens, and building new revenue sources. Seven key projects have been completed or launched. Six additional projects are currently in the implementation stage, and several more will be launched in the fall. You can find updates on these initiatives on our SBI Implementation website.

Some notable progress updates include:

-  Successful early results of the Accelerating Research initiative. Following the recommendations from the  Research and Innovation Task Force, our initial investments in additional staff support for research administration, along with new seed grant programs, have spurred a 22% increase in research expenditures this year. This is a great return on investment, and one that we believe will only grow our research impact into the future.

-  Six projects set to receive seed grants of up to $100,000 under the Provost’s Venture Fund (ProFund). The ProFund is a joint initiative run by the Office of the Provost and the Office of the Vice President for Research (OVPR). The grants fund interdisciplinary efforts between scientists at SBU who are seeking to apply for externally funded research and training initiatives. Twenty-four applications were submitted by the April 2022 deadline that involved more than 90 faculty across four SBU colleges and schools. The six awardees will be announced soon.

-Two interdisciplinary teams set to receive seed grants up to $25,000 each under the Creative Arts, Social Sciences, and Humanities (CASSH) program. This is a collaboration between the Office of the Provost and the College of Arts and Sciences. The CASSH project  is designed to support work among artists, social scientists, humanists, and scientists. We received eight proposals that will be reviewed and evaluated in the upcoming weeks. Awardees will be announced after the evaluation process.

A research space quality survey. We will soon recruit a consulting firm to conduct a survey of our research space. This effort is a collaboration of the Office of the Provost with the Office of the Vice President for Campus Planning, Design, and Construction that will help us map our research spaces and assess their critical needs.

-  Changes to the Institutional Review Board (IRB) process. The OVPR's Office of Research Compliance has implemented five of the eight recommendations from the Clinical Research Working Group intended to facilitate clinical research and improve the IRB review process. Work will continue on determining whether and how best to implement the remaining recommendations.

-  Technology and support services improvements in Human Resources (HR). Beginning this summer, we will work toward shifting from paper-based to user-friendly technology solutions and developing a more strategic service delivery model. Staff in HR and the Division of Information Technology have already begun work to implement an improved time and leave management process. Implementation and testing on new self-serve functionality for common HR processes, such as change of address and timekeeping, will be starting this summer as part of a phased and gradual rollout of the new technology. Additionally, the HR Transformation team will kick off in the coming weeks.

-  Development of an Office of Sponsorship and Branding. We will create the new office this summer to help streamline the process for supporting corporate sponsorships across the campus. It will be based in Advancement. A new position was recently created and the first director of this office will be announced in the coming weeks.

Enhanced HSC student placement. We are creating a position to develop a centralized placement process for the health sciences schools that matches the academic requirements of our healthcare students with the needs of our healthcare teams. Recruitment for this position is currently underway.

Improvements in graduate tuition revenue sharing. We are developing and implementing a new model for sharing graduate tuition revenue, including $2.1 million in departmental debt forgiveness. The new approach will align institutional and individual incentives, create transparency in funding levels and timelines, and encourage innovation and entrepreneurship in program development. We will pivot from the old model to this new approach beginning July 1, 2022.

The collective work we are doing to improve the future of Stony Brook University is both important and exciting. I look forward to providing you with more updates as this work unfolds. Thanks for all you do to make our institution a great place.


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Maurie McInnis