UCD has cast a solidifying blow of reassurance towards a recent wave of concerns over the level of funding available to third-level educational institutions in Ireland, with the fiscal year ending 2018 boasting a rise in both income and annual surplus. The college’s annual surplus saw a €3.1 million increase over 12 months, reaching €35.2 million. In addition to these promising figures, total income for the year also saw a 6 percent rise from the previous period, totalling at €587.1 million.
Professor Andrew Deeks, president of UCD, has stated that this was the most successful year on record with regards to obtaining research grants for the college. UCD received €122.4 million in research grants alone throughout 2018, more than a 25 percent increase. Comparatively, this figure is €5.5 million greater than the previous record for research grant income in a single year.
These high yielding revenue figures were also driven by a receipt of €68.7 million in state grants, up €6.7 million from the previous year, as well as an increase in academic fees for the year, which reported an €11.3 million increase to €230.8 million. Cash and bank balances at year end also saw a 4.2 percent increase, reaching €139.5 million, whilst the college’s borrowings were down 6.4 percent at €62.9 million. Notably the UCD Foundation, the independent charity run by college staff and students which looks to raise funding for UCD, does not have its financial records included in the consolidated accounts.
Expenditure costs also experienced marginal increases throughout the year. Capital expenditure came in at €38.3 million, with a large proportion of investments going towards the development of student accommodation. This coincides with the college’s residential masterplan, aiming to house up to 6000 students in newly developed properties. Total expenditure for the year was recorded at €552.1 million, showing a 5.8 percent increase.
UCD’s ‘Global Engagement Strategy’ also experienced a significantly positive year, as it saw the opening of a Dubai based Global Centre, which now becomes the fifth UCD Global Centre in the world.
Ian Walsh – Reporter