December 7, 2011

Robinson Hall B113, 3:00 – 4:15 p.m.



I.          Call to Order


II.        Approval of the Minutes of November 9, 2011


III.       Announcements

Dean Mark Ginsberg, College of Education and Human Development

Dean Andrea Bartoli, School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution


IV.       New Business - Committee Reports

             A.  Senate Standing Committees

Executive Committee

Academic Policies

Budget & Resources

Faculty Matters


Dimitrios Ioannou is nominated to fill the vacancy on the Academic Policies Committee

for Spring, 2012

Organization & Operations


             B. Other Committees 

Academic Initiatives Committee Update on the Korea Initiative            Attachment A

Presidential Search Committee Update


V.        Other New Business


VI.       Remarks for the Good of the General Faculty


VII.     Adjournment



Academic Initiative Committee Update on the Korea Initiative


Faculty Senate Meeting of 7 Dec. 2011

This semester the Academic Initiatives Committee has been working with Anne Schiller (Vice President and Associate Provost for Global Programs), Min Park (Faculty Advisor for the Songdo, Korea initiative), and Gil Brown  (University Chief Budget Officer) to review the plans for a possible George Mason University degree program presence as part of the Songdo Global University.   Each of these individuals has been helpful to the committee.  At this point we still have some unresolved questions about this initiative.  Until these questions are resolved, we are not able to offer an informed recommendation to the Faculty Senate about initiative. 

For your information, attached is a listing of pending questions and as well as memo regarding future space costs and related issues at the Songdo campus.  Once these questions and issues have been resolved, the committee plans to prepare a recommendation for the faculty senate. 

30 November 2011

Attachments (2)

George Mason University Songdo Korea Campus Initiative

 Pending AIC Questions


1.      Enrollment Targets:  Initial first year target is 80 students in two majors (undergraduate degree programs)

a.       Who will be responsible for recruiting the students for this campus?  Has she/he “bought into” the enrollment projections?

b.      What is the best estimate of the minimum and maximum number of students?

c.       What are the best and worst estimates of annual retention rates?

d.      What is the minimum enrollment that we must have to launch this program? 

e.       By what point must we have this minimum enrollment?

f.       Will the low birth rate in Korea affect recruitment for this campus?


2.      Academic Curriculum for the degree programs:

a.       We would like to see the semester by semester planned course programs for each of the initial three majors proposed. 

b.      We would like these some way be linked the course degree requirements for these majors.


3.      Students:

a.       Do Chinese students need visas for studying in Korea?

b.      Will these Chinese students have issues in gaining a visa to study in the U.S. in years 2 and 3?


4.      Incheon Free Economic Zone Authority (IFEZA):

a.       What is the relationship of IFEZA to the national government of Korea? 

b.      Is there support at the national level for the Songdo Global University?

c.       What is the relationship of the Songdo Global University Foundation to IFEZA?


5.      Financial Feasibility Questions (see attached memo to Gil Brown from Bob Johnston dated 12 November 2011)


Prepared by Bob Johnston

29 November 2011


                                      Robert D. Johnston

Finance Faculty

School of Management


Fairfax, VA 22030-4444

Telephone:  (703) 993-l869

FAX:  (703) 993-1870

E-mail:  johnston@


To:      Gil Brown, Chief Budget Officer


From:        Bob Johnston


Re:             Thoughts Regarding Future Space Costs and Related Issues Songdo Campus


Date:          12 November 2011     





In following up on our telephone conversation yesterday, this is my attempt to structure some questions we might raise with the Songdo Global University Foundation as the operating entity regarding our future space costs at the Songdo campus.


Common Space and Services (used by all the Universities):

1.      For the common space, will we be expected to contribute to the recovery of the capital investment required to construct these facilities?  If so, how will this be done and what will be the projected annual contributions and recovery period?  If not, how are these funds to be recovered?  (If they are to be recovered via student fees, then we may need to include this as factor in student demand.)

2.      For the common space, what will be the expected annual contributions for maintenance of the facilities and utilities?

3.      Other operating costs (included personnel) for the common space.  Beyond maintenance and utilities, how will the other annual operating costs for the common space be allocated and what are the estimates for these costs?

4.      Would we need to plan to fund library resources for our students?

5.      How will information technology resources be funded?  What might we expect to pay for these resources?

6.      For all of the common space costs, I believe we want these to be based upon their total target FTE of 10,000 students.  We want to contribute these on a per student FTE basis that we generate.   If we have a 1,000 FTE students and the total FTE is only 5,000 instead of their 10,000 target, we do not want to get stuck with 20% of the total costs.


George Mason University Instructional and Program Space:

1.      What are the projections per square meter or square foot for instructional space at the end of five years?  What should we assume regarding annual increases in these costs?

2.      Given the three programs that we are proposing, I do not believe any of these would require extraordinary labs or highly specialized space.  I am assuming that we would plan on these students completing science courses that require specialized lab space while at the Fairfax campus.

3.      I do not think we will need a great deal of instructional space given the number of students we are projecting.  However, we may need to plan on more space than we require if their intent is to build a separate building for us. 


Student Space (dormitories and eating facilities):

1.      What are the projected costs of these facilities for students beginning in 2013? 

2.      What are the assumptions regarding growth in these costs?

3.       I expect this may be important as these costs will be part of the total costs of matriculating at the Songdo campus and impact upon demand.


Student Support Services:

1.      As I understand it, student support services are to be provided centrally.  What will the per student charge for these services?

2.      Will these be part of the cost of dormitory space or a separate item?

3.      If separate, what are the assumed future growth rates?


Faculty Housing Space:

1.      Is there are projection for the cost of faculty housing at the end of five years?  If so, what is the projection and assumed future growth rates?

2.      If there are no projections, then what are current market rates for similar properties nearby?  What are the historical annual growth rates for these properties?


I expect there are other items I should have included, but hopefully this will give us a start.  I would be glad to discuss if you think it would be helpful. 


To get a quick estimate of a possible annual capital cost of the large common facility currently under construction, I put together the very simple Excel model that is attached.  As you will note, it is set up so that any of the key assumption might be changed.