Regent University Responds To Media Coverage Of Report By Moody's Investors Service

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Dr. Carlos Campo, president-elect of Regent University, comments about Chronicle of Higher Education article

Regent University president-elect, Dr. Carlos Campo, issued the following statement regarding a June 30, 2010 story in the Chronicle of Higher Education. The story discussed a financial rating update made by Moody's Investors Service.

Dr. Campo said the following:

"The recent Chronicle of Higher Education article on Moody’s rating update for Regent University did not fairly represent the university’s financial state. The original Moody's report clearly reflects the fact that the university has taken aggressive and appropriate steps to create a sustainable budget model for its future. While some fiscal challenges remain, the outlook for Regent University is quite strong overall. In particular, the article failed to include a number of positive statements by Moody’s, including the following:

  • "The expected endowment draw for FY 2010 and FY 2011 will be closer to 6 percent of a trailing average compared to a high of approximately 11 percent in FY 2008. Management has made payroll and other cuts during the last two years and has strengthened its resolve to move to a sustainable endowment spending rate."

The article does not mention that Moody’s noted the following “strengths”:

  • "Increases in undergraduate enrollment have not been as rapid as projected, but are still rather strong. The University had 3,923 full-time equivalent students in fall 2009, up 7.4 percent from the previous year. Net tuition revenue grew almost 10 percent in fiscal year 2010, aided by growth in undergraduate revenue."
  • "For fall 2010, management reports that accepted applications are up compared to fall 2009, with expected growth in the undergraduate program as new degree programs are added."
  • "Considerable financial resource base relative to similarly rated peers, with total financial resources of $163 million at the end of FY 2009, or $41,663 per student."
  • Continued donor support, although weakened, for the University which has average gift revenue of $4.2 million per year.

Dr. Campo continued, "In addition, the article uses language that did not appear in the report by Moody’s, most significantly: The word “crisis” never appears, there is no reference to “bailout,” and the phrase “dire financial straits” does not appear, although "considerable financial resource base" does."

"Regarding the specific reference to a gift from CBN, the organization has not provided any money to Regent, but merely confirmed that prior restricted funds of the University's endowment became unrestricted funds."

About Regent University:
Founded in 1978, Regent University has more than 4,800 students studying on its campus in Virginia Beach, Va., and online around the world. Regent offers associate's, bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees in fields including business, communication and the arts, divinity, education, government, law, leadership, and psychology and counseling.

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Chris Roslan

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