GMIT welcomes publication of HEA's Financial Review of Institutes of Technology
Date Article Written:
Friday, November 4, 2016
GMIT welcomes the publication of the HEA’s Financial Review of the Institutes of Technology.
Over the last decade GMIT, in common with all other Institutes of Technology, has responded to the challenge of an unprecedented reduction in State funding for higher education. GMIT has experienced a reduction in State grant funding of €15m from €38.3m in 2007/08 to €23.3m in 2014/15, a reduction of circa 39%.
Despite this reduction in State funding, GMIT has been able to maintain student numbers at circa 5,400 (full-time students), of which in excess of 60% are pursuing programmes in STEM disciplines. We welcome the acknowledgement in the report of the need for increased funding in the STEM areas.
In pursuance of its mission to support regional development, GMIT delivers programmes on five geographically dispersed campuses in Galway and Mayo. It is the view of the Governing Body of GMIT that, while this support of regional development is highly desirable, supporting multiple campuses is only sustainable if the State funding model is amended to reinstate the dedicated funding for these campuses.
GMIT welcomes the acknowledgment in the report of the 2015 science / IT project as being an excellent example of utilisation of some of its Institutional reserves.
In early 2016 the Governing Body approved a five year financial plan which envisages the further utilisation of existing reserves and cash balances in supporting further developments such as the proposed new STEM building, student facilities, etc. GMIT has presented this plan to the HEA which also shows a gradual decreasing of its operational deficit in 2015/16 and 2016/17 with a return to surplus projected in 2017/18. The plan is dependent on the continued implementation of a successful retention strategy and significant new programme development to increase student demand. Such new programme development includes the new and very successful programmes in Sports and Exercise Science and in Design introduced to the CAO in 2016.
GMIT wishes to acknowledge the commitment and dedication of all its staff in developing a response to past and future challenges.