Student housing occupancy on the upswing

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By Carol A. Clark

In spite of a $63,000 deficit, student housing at the University of New Mexico-Los Alamos is stabilizing and actually improving.

Campus Resources Director Lisa Clough told Advisory Board members Monday evening that while a deficit still remains, a full occupancy rate during one summer and fall time period will provide the college $350,000 in revenue.

They had 100 percent occupancy this summer, she said, and are currently measuring 50 percent for the fall.

“The critical thing is to really look at expenditures,” Clough said. As an example she mentioned that utilities doubled last year.

UNM-LA officials have spent the last several months assessing and improving the performance of each auxiliary enterprise at the college and are seeing a marked improvement in several areas.

The college bookstore is now operating in the black and has built up a balance of $14,000, she said. The food service remains in the red but plans are in place to reverse that trend.

Clough also said the tuition fee component is critical and must be carefully watched.

Executive Director Cedric Page informed the board that by the end of the month he and Clough will meet with auxiliary managers.

Earlier in the year they withheld 50 percent of their budgets until they could get a handle on the status of each enterprise.

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