The array of business units within Auxiliary Services supports a diverse campus community including students, staff, faculty, visitors and various entities external to the University. To maximize the value of services and products, Auxiliary Services collaborates with many partners seeking to optimize each other's core competencies. Internal partners include the Office of Student Affairs, Purchasing Services, Office of Information Technology, Intercollegiate Athletics, the Coordinate Campuses and all other University Services units.
Housing & Residential Life serves the University community by providing students housing and living learning opportunities on or near the campus. Research has shown that incoming first-year students who live on campus have higher GPAs than their off-campus peers. Research has also shown that students who live on campus are more likely to be involved in and connected to the University, therefore having higher retention and graduation rates. University Dining Services enhances and compliments the on-campus living experience by providing students with nutritional meals in an educationally oriented community environment.
The University of Minnesota Bookstores provides students a one-stop opportunity to acquire all required course materials through its new, used, rental, e-book and course packet offerings. Multiple delivery options allow students to acquire required course materials at a cost point that meets their individual financial needs.
Parking and Transportation Services serves the transportation needs of approximately 80,000 students, staff, faculty and campus visitors. In addition to providing public and contract parking, PTS provides award-wining services including: Fleet Services, which has been named "1 of 100 Best Fleets" in America six years running (2004-2010) by Fleet Equipment Magazine; Transit Services, which in 2010 was named "Transit System of the Year" by the Minnesota Public Transportation Association; Parking Services, the International Parking Institute's 2007 International Parking Organization of the Year; and in support of bicycle transportation, one of only four nationwide localities to receive a federal Non-Motorized Transportation Program grant ($529,000) to construct a bicycle center and initiate a bike commuter tracking system. In fall of 2010, partnering with Metro Transit bus/light rail system, PTS recorded sales of 18,888 U Passes to students and 1,746 Metro passes to faculty and staff.
University Stores provides a University-wide electronic procurement and payment system offering competitive, efficient and timely supply purchasing and delivery. U Stores eProcurement and distribution services consolidate half of the University's total purchase orders, lowering transaction costs and reducing the number of delivery vehicles on campus.
Other Auxiliary Services units including Printing Services, Addressing & Mailing, and the U Card Office support the academic enterprise by offering goods and services that "make the University work". By providing approximately 1,300 student employment opportunities, Auxiliary Services units assist students in financially supporting the cost of their education in a student development environment that supports the University's Student Outcomes Initiative.
Auxiliary Services units participate in University governance and Twin Cities subcommittees. Auxiliary Services staff are members of the Council of Academic Professionals and Administrators (P&A), serve as P&A representatives to the University Senate and serve on the Senate Social Concerns Committee and the subcommittee on Twin Cities Facility and Support Services.Â Auxiliary Services staff also serve on many University Advisory Committees including: System-wide Sustainability Committee; Central Corridor Light Rail Transit; Compliance Partners; Occupational Health & Safety Advisory Committee; Provost's Committee on Mental Health; Advisory Board for Orientation & First-Year Programs; University Enrollment Management Strategy Coordinating Group; University International Enrollment Committee; Disability Services Committee; Benefits Advisory Committee and Coalition for a Respectful U.
Auxiliary Services also maintains partnerships with numerous national and local external entities and many vendors and suppliers of goods and services. In July 2008, the University entered into four new food and beverage contracts as a result of a two year comprehensive Food & Beverage RFP process that demonstrated the University's advancement of its single enterprise, culture of excellence and best business practices goals. The estimated value of these contracts includes ARAMARK ($96 million over 12 years); Sodexo ($7 million over 10 years); Coca-Cola ($38 million over 10 years); and Taher ($2.7 million over 10 years). Providing consistent contract oversight and direction through Auxiliary Services' Contract Administration unit allows the University to maximize contractual financial and programmatic benefits while creating operational efficiencies across several of its campuses and Twin Cities departments.