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September 08, 1983 - Image 27

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1983-09-08

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Firm

to

The Michigan Daily - Thursday, September 8, 1983 - Page 17-A
market. 'U

research

for

. ..........

Daily Photo

Bridge bicycling

A lone bicycler catches some sun, fresh air, and exercise with a jaunt through the park.

'U' hopes alumni wallets

wil ecast
By CHERYL BAACKE
When individuals get into financial
trouble they often turn to family for
-help; facing-several years of shrinking
budgets, the University has done the
same thing.
The only difference is that "family"
for the University means 260,000 alum-
ni, and "help" comes to the tune of $160
million.
The high-powered "Campaign for
Michigan," the largest fund raising
-campaign ever at a public institution,
will officially kick off this fall to raise
money to support University projects
from engineering to Art History,
renovations, faculty positions, student
scholarships, and University
Tellowships.
TIMES HAVE been rougher than
usual for the University in recent years.
State financial support has been slip-
ping over the last decade, especially
since 1979, while the University has
continued to expand. The combination
has left University administrators
scrambling to balance each year's
budgets.
But they have begun to attack the
problem from two directions.
To help cut down costs, they have
launched a five-year plan to cut $20
million from the University's budget
and channel that money into under-fun-
ded programs.
AND TO INCREASE revenues, they
Are attempting to tap the pocketbooks
of one of the largest living alumni
bodies in the world .
That's where the University's new
vice president for development and
University relations comes in. Jon
Cosovich's presence on campus demon-
strates the importance administrators
have put behind the "Campaign for
Michigan." An expert in public fund
raising, Cosovich is the highest paid
vice president and makes more than
the University president.
Although Cosovich said the fund
raising drive is a response to declinirig
support from the state, he said it is not

?a /*budget
an attempt to instantly replace lost
revenue.
"(The campaign) is not a desperation
move at all," he said. "It isn't a major
crisis, but part of a major plan to
become more systematic and com-
prehensive in pursuit of gift support for
the University."
ROY MUIR, DIRECTOR of the cam-
paign, said the drive "is part of a
general University commitment, not a
frantic reaction to budget cutting."
"We feel strongly that the rationale is
not based on the problems on the
University, but its greatness and
strengths."
The strengths which the University
has decided to emphasize are split bet-
ween construction projects and en-
dowed funds for professors and studen-
ts.
THE GOALS for new buildings and
renovations are:
" $20 million to help build an addition
to the Chemistry Building and update
facilities in the old building;
" $20 million to help build a $300
million University hospital on the
medical campus;
", $15 million for additions to the
Business Administration Building, in-
cluding a new library and computer
system;
" $12 million to construct a College of
Engineering building on North Cam-
pus;
* $9.5 million for a new eye care cen-
ter at the hospital;
. $1.7 million to build a vocal arts cen-
ter and organ recital chamber in the
School of Music;
" $1.4 million to build a slide library
onto Tappan Hall for the Art History
Department.
The other half of the $160 million will
be used to set up funds for special
faculty positions and student scholar-
ships and fellowships. Money will also
be used to support some research and
the University libraries.
The money raised through the cam-
paign will be used to supplement tuition
revenues, Cosovich said.

crunch

By JIM SPARKS
University research on such products
as insulin and the polio vaccine cer-
tainly benefits the public. But with
shrewd marketing it can also turn out to
be a bonanza for the university and the
inventor.
The University of Wisconsin, for
example has pulled in more than $14
million from just one patent - the syn-
thesis of Vitamin D.
YET DESPITE the University's
strong reputation for research, profits
from that research have been few and
far between.
Only $200,000 a year comes back to
the University in royalty money, and
although activity has increased since
the University decided to give inventors
a bigger share of the take last April,
some professors felt something else
was needed.
That something else is called the
Michigan Research Corporation
(MRC), a firm which would pick out
promising research ideas at the
University, invest in them, put them on
the market, and split any profits bet-
ween the corporation, the University,
and the inventor.
SUPPORTERS OF the corporation
hope that in addition to adding to the
coffers of the University, the firm will
help keep professors from straying to
industry or higher paying jobs at other
schools, by giving them a chance to
profit from their discoveries.
The University's executive officers
are currently discussing the proposal,
and if it is approved by the Regents, the
University will kick in $200,000 to start
the company. As more stockholders
buy into the company, the University
would assume the role of a minority
stockholder.
This relationship has bothered
faculty members who see research for
profit as a perversion of the Univer-
sity's mission, and who Fre troubled by
the possibility that the C niversity, as a
minority stockholder mitht not be able
to control some of the research that
goes on.
IN RESPONSE to such criticism, Dr.
Bodo Diehn, interim director of the
corporation, said that while the Univer-
sity will not be able to control what kin-
ds of research stockholders are in-
terested in, "it can say, not in our labs
you won't."
Another problem the corporation
must deal with, one that has plagued
other universities who have research
agreements with industry, is where the
researcher's committment lies - to the
University or to the company.
Thomas Dunn, a chemistry professor
who has worked on an advisory com-
mittee for the MRC, said if MRC
research cuts into a faculty member's
tasks at the University, professors
might have to go part-time or take
leaves of absences. Althoug Diehn said
"We would be doing the University a
disservice" if more professors had to be
hired to take up the slack, Dunn said he
didn't think the number of professors
involved with the MRC would ever be
enough to cause a significant problem.
DUNN PROJECTED returns of $1
million a year once the corporation gets
underway. "It's not worth it for several
hundred thousand dollars," he added.
By 1984, if the University's Regents
approve the corporation, two or three

HLOW TO
GET BETTER MILEAGE
FROM YOUR CAR...

projects should be funded, with two
more added on in 1985
Dunn said all agreements between
researchers and the corporation will be
publically disclosed, and he did not
think ethical problems will plague this
marriage of University research and
outside money: "There's a lot of people
that think the University could get in-
volved in all kinds of dirty deals...it
just needs ethical people operating in an
honest way," he said.
WILFRED KAPLAN, PRESIDENT
of the local American Association or

Psychology 201
PROJECT OUTREACH
Experimental learning through personal
involvement in community agencies/groups
FOR COURSE INFORMATION STOP BY OR CALL:
Intro. Psych., 554 Thompson Street, 764-9279

profit
University Professors chapter, is
generally optimistic that the cor-
poration can bring in more research
money and help retain professors. "On
the other hand," Kaplan said, "it could
become very big and dominate what's
happening and do a lot of damage."
The idea of an MRC has received
strong support from the deans of the
University's schools and colleges, and
in June 1982, the faculty's governing
body endorsed the concept.
See CORPORATION, Page 6

Obey the 55 mph speedliit.j
10 D~~

Keep your engine tuned.
7> -
Drive at a stead. pac
P: -- 5 5
I-

Avoid hot rod starts.
) -

_1

For a free booklet with more easy energy-saving tips,
write "Energy," Box C2,Oak Ridge TN 37830.
ENERGY.
We can't afford to waste it.

Cosarich
... raising money for U' projects
"We want to raise the level of
awareness for the importance of fun-
draising over and above tuition," he
said. "Tuition doesn't cover the major
percentage of education."
Cosovich expects almost all of the
donations to come from alumni,
although the University will also con-
tact large corporations and foun-
dations. Administrators hope to reach
the $160 million goal sometime in 1987.
"It is clearly within the capability of
the institution to meet the campaign
goal," said Cosovich. "It isn't guaran-
teed, but I think we're smart enough to
find (the money)."

"~

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t )A

( 7

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