Update on STEM Building

Dear Faculty, Staff and Students:

I have received a number of questions regarding Governor Lee’s previously recommended funding for our STEM Building. As you are likely aware, the interim budget recommended by Governor Lee following the onset of COVID-19 eliminated all capital funding, leaving the future for the building uncertain. This past week, Mike Krause, Executive Director of the Tennessee Higher Education Commission (THEC), provided clarification. Here is the direct quote from his message:

“Projects previously named in the Governor’s budget document, and then removed when the emergency budget was passed, will retain their current ranking in the FY21-22 proposed budget, and do not need to be resubmitted. This includes the projects submitted, and then selected for funding, by TTU, APSU, TCAT Chattanooga and the University of Memphis.”

In short, we will not be required to resubmit the project for the FY21-22 budget (i.e. next fiscal year’s budget). Hopefully, capital funds will be made available in the next fiscal year. Since the UofM raised considerable private funds for the project, we will continue the planning process during the coming fiscal year. Accordingly, we will be ready to initiate the contracting process and break ground immediately, once state funding is allocated.

I will keep you updated as new information becomes available. Be safe, and stay healthy.


Dr. M. David Rudd, President