The University of Montevallo is pleased to announce that Standard and Poor’s Ratings Services has recently upgraded the long-term rating for the University from “A-” to “A,” and notes the outlook as stable. The upgraded rating comes at a time when state funding for public higher education has declined for a half decade, and so is not only impressive but also becomes doubly important in the University’s ability to utilize financial resources that will help meet the needs of its students – both present and future.
The ratings reflect S & P’s view when considering strong financial resources for the rating category, a moderate maximum annual debt service burden, good revenue diversity and a history of not only avoiding the use of reserves but also, in most cases, increasing them.
The report also cited increased demand and enrollment as a positive factor in its rating decision, noting that as the only public liberal-arts university in Alabama, Montevallo serves a niche market, with potential students exhibiting a degree of self-selection in their decision to apply. Freshman applications have increased by 22 percent during the last four years, and S & P noted that they consider tuition for a full-time, in-state student ($9,330 for the 2013-2014 academic year) very affordable.
“In a time of economic challenge when many colleges and universities are being downgraded, we are pleased to have received the upgrade,” stated DeAnna Smith, vice president for business affairs at UM. “I’m privileged to work with a campus community who are excellent stewards of University resources and have embraced our financial health goals. To be able to continue to offer the high-quality education for which Montevallo is known, while enduring the sharp reductions in state funding, and still be recognized for our financial health is gratifying.”