As a public institution, William & Mary does receive funding from the state. However, as pressures increase for public dollars to address other priorities – such as health care, K-12 education, transportation and public safety – the state funds available for higher education are limited. In 1980, the Commonwealth provided 43% of William & Mary’s operating budget. Today, even with recent increases from the state, it provides less than 14%.
The W&M Promise takes into account the additional $1.9 million provided to the College for operations in the most recent state budget (2013-2014 academic year). We also have to adjust to increased charges from the state for things like medical insurance, so new funds are often offset by new costs. While we anticipate W&M will receive some additional state funds going forward, we have been realistic about their likely extent. The state confronts enormous and growing demands on its resources, which are not likely to grow as robustly in the future as they have in many years past.
Doing more with less
In the latest U.S. News & World Report, W&M ranked 32nd in quality among national universities and 114th in financial resources. That gap of 82 spaces is the largest by far of any of the top 50 universities, including those that are public.