Minnesota Office of the Legislative Auditor
Financial Audit Division

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Report Summary
St. Cloud Technical College

Financial Audit for the Period July 1, 1995
through June 30, 1997

 

Public Release Date: June 26, 1998 No. 98-38

Background

St. Cloud Technical College was established in 1948. The college merged with other state universities, community colleges, and technical colleges on July 1, 1995, to form the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities (MnSCU). The MnSCU Board of Trustees appointed Dr. Joan Barrett as the president of the college effective July 1, 1997.

Our audit scope included a review of college financial management, tuition and fees, payroll, supplies and equipment, and bookstore activities for the period July 1, 1995, through June 30, 1997. We also audited the administration of the federal student financial aid program for fiscal year 1998.

Conclusions

This audit identified serious concerns about St. Cloud Technical College's financial activities and management oversight practices. We found college resources were susceptible to overspending, at risk of being misreported or manipulated, and were vulnerable to errors. The college did not effectively use the MnSCU accounting system to monitor finances.

St. Cloud Technical College did not properly administer and control its financial operations. The MnSCU accounting system balances were not reliable and the college did not reconcile its accountings records to state treasury and local bank account activities. Financial staff responsibilities were poorly separated and computer access privileges were excessive. Cash and deposit monitoring controls were inadequate.

Several control weaknesses and financial concerns were raised over tuition and fees, supplies and equipment, and bookstore activities. The college did design controls to provide reasonable assurance over the accuracy of payroll and federal and state student financial aid activities. However, these activities were not properly recorded on the MnSCU accounting system, and other weaknesses were also noted.

In its response to the report, St. Cloud Technical College agreed with the audit findings and suggested recommendations. The college is pursuing or has initiated corrective action to resolve all findings.

 

Office of the Legislative Auditor ♦ Room 140, 658 Cedar St., St. Paul, MN 55155