With an upcoming $52 million renovation to Crisler Arena, a proposal to raise room and board rates and an abundance of faculty promotions to approve, the University’s Board of Regents will be busy when it meets for its regular monthly meeting on Thursday.

As per recent tradition, the board will gather at the University’s Dearborn campus where it will likely approve a 3-percent increase to residence hall rates and a 1-percent increase to rates of the Northwood apartments on North Campus for the 2011-2012 academic year.

E. Royster Harper, the University’s vice president for student affairs, recommended the rate hikes in a communication to the regents. Harper wrote that the increase to the Northwood rates is due to higher operating costs and for the residence halls is a result of increased funding needed for renovation projects on buildings like Alice Lloyd Residence Hall, which will be closed in the upcoming academic year for reconstruction.

If approved by the regents, the cost of a double room with a standard meal plan in the residence halls will cost $9, 468 — up $260 from last year.

The proposed residence hall room and board rate would give the University the third highest rate in the Big Ten, trailing only Northwestern University and Purdue University.

A 3-percent increase, though, would be less than increases at other Big Ten schools. Michigan State University will raise rates by 5 percent, while Indiana University will top the conference at a 6.3 percent increase in room and board rates for the next academic year.

Regents to mull over Crisler Arena expansion

The regents are also expected to green light the second phase of renovations to Crisler Arena.

In a communication to the regents, Athletic Director Dave Brandon and Timothy Slottow, the University’s executive vice president and chief financial officer, wrote that the $52 million project would add 63,000 square feet of new entrances, stores, ticket booths and luxury suites.

Another 54,000 square feet would be refurbished to include, among other things, restrooms, concession stands and handicap accessible seats, while making the concourses easier to navigate, they wrote.

Construction is expected to be completed in winter 2014.

In Oct. 2010, the regents approved a $23 million renovation to the 44-year-old arena that will replace all the seats and update several infrastructure elements.

Regents to consider faculty promotions

The regents will also vote on faculty promotions for members of each of the University’s campuses.

On the Ann Arbor campus, 213 faculty members, from every school and college, are up for consideration to be promoted to the rank of professor or assistant professor.

Promotion cases are traditionally brought before the regents each May. Before the regents hear the cases, deans and the Office of the Provost work for several months, reviewing each case for promotion individually.

In an interview last month, University Provost Philip Hanlon said reading the promotion cases is one of his favorite parts of his job because it provides him the opportunity to learn about different types of teaching and research that faculty members at the University are doing.

“That’s really the fun of reading through hundreds of promotion cases here at the University of Michigan,” Hanlon said. “You really get dazzled by it by the time you’re done.”

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