Baylor Board of Regents welcomes new members, begins new era of governance

Channel 6 news reporter Jasmin Caldwell reports.

WACO - The Baylor University Board of Regents met Friday to begin a new era of governance with some fresh faces in the room. 

Friday's meeting was the first for the university's new president Linda Livingstone, and also for board chair Joel Allison. 

The board proudly welcomed seven new members, and they didn't hesitate to start making an impact. 

Board members approved two academic degree programs in physical education and sports pedagogy, which will allow students to get both their bachelor's and master's degree in five years time. 

Students who receive their diplomas will have to pay a pretty penny, too -- prettier than ever before. Baylor students can expect their tuition to increase by four percent as soon as next fall. 

Livingstone noted that despite the spike in tuition, the cost to attend Baylor University is still lower than other private institutions in Texas. 

"We try to look at how do we build money for scholarships, raise money for scholarships to try to reduce the overall cost of education for students, so they can afford to come to Baylor and afford to finish at Baylor," Livingstone said. "So, it's certainly something that we spend a lot of time talking about and continue to look at ways to assure affordability."

School officials said the increase will provide for a new facility, staff hires, and create a merit raise pool. 

Despite the changes, many people still wonder how Baylor will heal after a number of lawsuits and sexual assault allegations brought negative attention to the university. 

Allison said he believes it is best to leave the past in the past. 

"We just need to move forward," Allison said. "We need to understand and learn from the past and that's what we're doing when we impliment these new changes. You get good people, good processing, good systems. We want people to say how did you do this and how did you make it right."

The board chairman said they have worked to diversify the board. The new members consist of two men and five women.

© 2017 KCEN-TV


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