The University of Gloucestershire has published its 2019/20 Financial Statements − the first set of results reflecting the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the university. Demand for University places has been buoyant and the University is planning for further growth.
Highlights of the statements include:
• Total income of £78 million
• An operating surplus (before pension charges) of 2.6% of turnover
• An increase in liquidity to 126 days, reflecting stronger cash generation of 11%
• An increase in net assets (before pension charges) to £92 million
• Capital investment of £3.3 million to maintain and improve the estate, and long-term borrowings have further reduced.
Student recruitment is key to delivering the University’s mission and sustainability, and the 2019/20 recruitment cycle went well.
• Applications during the main cycle to September 2020 were up 17% to 11,813 compared with the previous year
• Acceptances were up 12% year on year to 3,530
• The number of new students enrolled in September was up 14% year on year to 3,408
• Recruitment to nursing and allied health programmes has been particularly strong, with undergraduate acceptances up 20% year on year
• Higher and degree apprenticeships continue to grow, with total apprentice enrolments during 2019/20 of 421.
Commenting on the results, Stephen Marston, Vice-Chancellor said:
“We are pleased to have maintained a sound financial position, despite all of the many challenges created by Covid-19. The pandemic both increased our costs and reduced some revenues, and created huge disruption to our operations as well as stress and anxiety for staff and students. We have also faced further large increases in pension costs.
But the University community has responded magnificently, rapidly switching teaching, learning and student support online. We re-opened the university in September as planned, and have been able to sustain throughout the autumn term a blended programme of online learning, campus-based and face-to-face activities. Students and staff have shown great resilience and adaptability, with a positive response to the activities we have been able to sustain on campus, despite lockdown restrictions.
From March 2020 our recruitment activities also had to switch online. However, we have successfully increased applications and enrolments in September, with particularly strong demand in priority areas of our portfolio, including computing and cyber, nursing and allied health, and natural and social sciences. This reflects the impact of our award-winning “Who cares? We do!” recruitment campaign focused on what students care about.
We continue to invest in new facilities and new courses, improving what we offer for students and meeting the needs of employers and our community. During 2021 we will be introducing new courses (including higher and degree apprenticeships) in nursing and allied health; biomedical sciences; and architecture, construction and the environment. I would like to pay tribute to the way the whole university community, staff and students, has risen to the challenges of an exceptionally difficult year, achieving real progress in very demanding times.”
The Financial Statements give a detailed picture of the University’s finances and operations during the year from August 2019 to July 2020, including the impacts of the pandemic, and are available on the university website.
A list of 360-degree virtual tours of the University campuses, buildings and sites, are accessible via the website.