|Public Release Date: May 19, 1999||No. 99-28|
St. Cloud State University (SCSU) is the largest of seven state universities within the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities (MnSCU) with an enrollment of more than 14,000 students. The university offers comprehensive undergraduate and graduate programs and diverse opportunities such as international study. During the scope of our audit, Dr. Bruce Grube was president of St. Cloud State University.
Our audit scope included a review of university financial management, tuition and fees, room and board revenues, employee and student payroll, selected expenditure areas, computer store operations, and miscellaneous revenues for the period July 1, 1995, through June 30, 1998. We also examined the administration of federal financial aid programs for fiscal years 1998 and 1999.
The audit found that St. Cloud State University designed and implemented internal controls to provide reasonable assurance that it operated within its available resources and monitored revenue and expenditure budgets. However, we noted that certain financial activities were not properly recorded, state treasury and local bank accounts were not reconciled on a timely basis, and access privileges to computerized accounting and payroll business systems were not adequately restricted. We also identified a concern with the university's relationship with its foundation.
The university designed and implemented controls to provide reasonable assurance over accuracy and recording of revenues, payroll, and other expenditures. Findings relating to safeguarding and depositing controls over computer store and miscellaneous revenue collections were identified. In addition, the university had ineffective inventory and financial monitoring practices to monitor computer store activities.
Computerized application controls were designed and implemented by the university to provide reasonable assurance that it managed its financial aid programs in compliance with federal and state regulations. The computer edits eligibility, packages and awards grants and loans to students, verifies enrollment, and interfaces balances into accounts receivable and student records. However, we noted instances of noncompliance resulting from certain difficulties encountered during implementation of this computerized application.
St. Cloud State University agreed with most audit findings and is taking corrective actions to resolve the issues. However, they disagreed with our finding concerning improper accounting for sponsored program income. They also felt that the university's employment of the foundation's executive director conforms with MnSCU policy.