Public higher education in Tennessee is provided through two separate systems, the University of Tennessee Board of Trustees (UT System), and the Tennessee Board of Regents (TBR System). The Tennessee General Assembly established the Tennessee Higher Education Commission (THEC) in 1967 to coordinate the two systems and the independent higher education institutions in Tennessee.  The governance and organizational structure indicating the relationship is shown at the THEC website.  The legal governing body for the University of Memphis is TBR. 
A. The Institutional Mission
The Tennessee Board of Regents (TBR) requires each university and college under its jurisdiction to develop an institutional mission statement as part of the system’s strategic planning process.  The UofM periodically reviews and revises its mission, a process that includes campus-wide participation.  However, final authority for approving the mission rests with TBR.  UofM is currently in the process of revising its mission,  and TBR approval is anticipated for December 2004. 
B. The Fiscal Stability of the Institution
The fiscal stability of the university is the shared responsibility of TBR, the chancellor of the system, and the president of the institution.  Fiscal stability is assured through strict adherence to and application of TBR Policy 1:03:02:00, Duties of the Presidents; numerous TBR  and university  guidelines, policies, and procedures relating to planning, budgeting, finance and administration; expenditure accountability; and internal and external audits.
Operating control of the university resides with the president as chief executive officer, who presents three detailed budgets for each fiscal year to the chancellor for review. These consist of the original budget prepared in May preceding the beginning of the fiscal year, the fall revision prepared in October of the fiscal year, and the spring revision prepared in May of the fiscal year. Once budgets have been reviewed and determined to be in compliance with TBR policies and guidelines, they are submitted to TBR through the chancellor's office. It is the responsibility of TBR, upon the chancellor's recommendation, to approve or disapprove institutional budgets. 
Within the university, allocation and final approval of all budgets is the responsibility of the president. The vice president for business and finance is responsible for insuring adherence to the approved budget and for maintaining appropriate records. 
The president is responsible for submitting an annual financial report to demonstrate compliance with the budget and to document the fiscal stability of the university for review by the chancellor and TBR.  State law  requires an annual audit. University annual reports are audited by the State of Tennessee Comptroller of the Treasury, Department of Audit, Division of State Audit. 
C. Institutional Policies, Including Related and Affiliated Corporate Entities and Auxiliary Services
TBR Guideline B-020 defines system-wide policies related to educational business activities, which include all auxiliary services.  By policy, auxiliary enterprises furnish services to students, faculty or staff, and charge a fee directly related to, but not necessarily equal to, the cost of the services. They are essential elements in support of the education program, and conceptually are regarded as self-supporting. The institution’s authority to establish fees for these services is described in TBR Guideline B-060 Fees, Charges, and Refunds. 
Auxiliary services at the UofM include the university bookstore, student housing, food services, copier vending, food and beverage vending, parking services, and other rentals.
The University’s Auxiliary Service unit  is responsible for managing copier vending and coordinating the contracts for the university bookstore and snack and beverage vending. The Parking Services Office,  another auxiliary unit, manages all university owned parking lots. The university’s Residence Life and Dining Services  manages student housing and the food services contract.
D. Related Foundations and Other Corporate Entities
The UofM benefits from the support of the University of Memphis Foundation and the Workforce of the Future Advanced Distributed Learning (ADL) Collaboration Laboratory (Co-Lab). Both are distinct corporate entities.
TBR Policy 4:01:07:02 authorizes the establishment of foundations as separate, not-for-profit organizations that exist “solely to support and advance the objectives of an institution” and requires a written agreement describing the “respective responsibilities and services” of the institution and the foundation.  In accordance with this policy, the University of Memphis has a formal agreement with the UofM Foundation.  The foundation’s by-laws  and policies and procedures  further define the relationship between the foundation and the UofM.
One of just five in the nation, the ADL Co-Lab will develop eLearning technologies and promote standards to help businesses develop a better trained, more productive, and more profitable workforce. The Co-Lab was established as a non-profit in the State of Tennessee in 2004,  and is housed in the FedEx Institute of Technology.