Financial Planner Oversees $65M Budget for Academic Affairs

Janine Lockhart, financial planner and analyst in the Office of Academic Affairs, finds the best options for meeting the demands of Wesleyan’s five-year financial plans.
Posted 01/17/06
Q: Janine, so you’re the financial planner and analyst in the Office of Academic Affairs.

A: Yes, although I usually am introduced as the budget person since that’s a more familiar concept for most people.

Q: When did you come here?

A: I came to Wesleyan and this position in July 2004. Several others held the position before me, including Sun Chyung, with whom I work closely in her current capacity as the budget director for Wesleyan.

Q: Explain what your role is as a financial planner? What budgets do you monitor?

A: I oversee the annual operating budget for Academic Affairs, which amounts to $65 million and consists of funding for more than 50 departments and programs.

Q: What does the analyst part of your job consist of?

A: Although I don’t really think of them separately, as an analyst I look at the potential impact of various planning options, policy changes or funding changes, as well as monitor the outcome of the plans that are implemented.

Q: What are typical questions or problems people would come to you with?

A: I provide support for a variety of issues –everything from how to use various components of the financial/reporting systems to which account/object code should be used for a particular expenditure to finding funding for unanticipated needs.

Q: What are some of the big challenges in your job right now?

A: Right now, it’s the challenge of finding the best options for meeting the demands of Wesleyan’s five-year financial plans.

Q: Who are the key people you work with in Academic Affairs?

A: I work closely with everyone in Academic Affairs, as well as a number of people in Financial Affairs and Information Technology Services on a regular basis.

Q: What were you doing before you came to Wesleyan?

A: I’ve worked primarily in higher education and the arts, most recently as the budget officer at a medical school in Ohio.

Q: Where are you from?

A: I grew up in East Liverpool, Ohio, a small town where the Ohio, Pennsylvania, West Virginia borders meet, which was once the pottery capital of the world. I lived throughout northeastern Ohio until I moved to Connecticut last year.

Q: Where did you attend college and what did you major in?

A: I have a bachelor’s degree in French horn performance from the Dana School of Music at Youngstown State University in Ohio. I’ve also completed graduate coursework in arts administration.

Q: What do you like to do when you’re not working?

A: I love to read, go to the movies, and keep up with the crazy antics of my family. I’ve served as a volunteer for various arts organizations and feel fortunate to have played a very small role in helping out at Green Street Arts Center since coming to Wesleyan.

By Olivia Drake, The Wesleyan Connection editor