While some faculty and staff members contribute money to TCU every year, others say it is not financially feasible for them.The Annual Fund, a program that garners contributions from faculty and staff members, alumni and parents to support the university’s operating budget, has launched this year’s Faculty/Staff Annual Campaign, which ends on April 24, but not every faculty and staff member is able to participate in it.
Louise Vantilburg, a library assistant who has contributed money to the university for about 15 years, said she gives to the university because she appreciates the pleasant working environment and incentives that the university provides.
Michael Lampley, a periodicals librarian at the Mary Couts Burnett Library, said he does not give to the university because he is opposed to the idea of returning money to his employers.
“I came here to work to make me money and it seems counterproductive to give back,” he said. “I have less at the end of the day if I give.”
Aileen Stone, administrative support assistant at the Physical Plant, said she is eager to give to the university because it has provided her a job she enjoys.
“They have been good to me for the 17 years I have been here,” she said.
The Annual Fund continues to send requests for donations to Betty Nance, an administrative assistant in the department of Modern Languages and Literatures, but she said she has not been able to afford contributing funds because of an increase in insurance costs and other factors in her financial situation.
Hao Tran, chairwoman of the Staff Assembly, said she has not received any complaints from faculty and staff members about the university’s request for financial contributions.
Although employees are encouraged to give to the university, she said, it is their choice to participate.
“I think everybody has a fair understanding that they can give if they want to,” she said.
Cindy Hayes, director of the Annual Fund, said funds from faculty and staff members will support this year’s budget, which provides academic facilities, salaries and scholarships.
The $270.3 million operating budget also receives $46.9 million from TCU’s endowment, said Brian Gutierrez, vice chancellor for finance and administration.
David Nolan, associate vice chancellor for university development, said faculty and staff members are stakeholders in the university’s development, because as employees, they are affected personally by the university’s condition.
“If the university is successful, they have a better place to work,” he said. “Since TCU is a private school, it relies heavily on private contributions to the university. So we ask all our primary stakeholders to contribute and this gives every one of our alumni, parents, faculty and staff members the opportunity to participate.”
Nolan said 62 percent of about 1,626 faculty and staff members contributed $246,184 to the university last year.
Although high-income faculty members gave more than low-income employees, Nolan said the Physical Plant, which has more low-income employees than most departments, had one of the highest participation rates.
Nolan said there is no particular amount of money that the Annual Fund administrators hope to raise this year because the campaign is based on faculty and staff participation.