Home Coronavirus Coverage Major Cost-Cutting Begins in Response to Covid-19, With Faculty and Staff Furloughs and Pay Cuts – The Chronicle of Higher Education

Major Cost-Cutting Begins in Response to Covid-19, With Faculty and Staff Furloughs and Pay Cuts – The Chronicle of Higher Education

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The long-term economic impact of the pandemic is uncertain. But colleges are taking steps now to offset deep revenue losses.

Weeks after colleges across the country shut down campuses in response to the spread of the novel coronavirus, there is little to indicate that anything approaching normal will happen on most campuses through the summer and possibly into the fall.

The only certainty is that the disruptions caused by the pandemic will lead to budget shortfalls and cost-cutting at institutions of all types, probably for many months to come.

The institution taking the broadest steps, so far, is the University of Arizona, which is projecting a $250-million loss in revenue because of the coronavirus, including $66 million by the end of its fiscal year, on June 30. Arizona announced on Friday that it would offset revenue losses with furloughs or direct pay cuts for nearly all employees until the summer of 2021.

Robert C. Robbins, Arizona’s president, said the decision to cut pay was a difficult one but would keep employees working during the crisis. “We could do this now or we could fire a bunch of people,” he said. “Nobody wants to fire a bunch of people.”

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