Pandemic update: furloughs and travel

President Pinto shares new information on budget steps, travel policy

Dear Faculty and Staff,

Today, my heart is heavy in sharing the news that we have notified 360 of our staff colleagues that they will be temporarily furloughed from June 1 to July 30. The employees affected serve in our auxiliary and athletic operations, mostly in roles in now-dormant, student- and public-facing facilities, providing operational support for service venues as well as events. 

To those directly impacted, please know, above all, these furloughs are happening through no fault of your own. This in no way reflects on the quality of your work.

The decision to furlough was given painstaking consideration with the hope that it may prevent further, even more painful actions. Make no mistake, the sacrifices of those furloughed, even if temporary, are significant and real – not only to them but to their families and loved ones. In keeping with our policy, healthcare, dental care and life insurance benefits, and vacation and sick time accruals will continue during the furlough, as well as years of service. 

Our previous campus communications have outlined the unfolding financial impact of recent events, including ongoing and upcoming cuts in state support, loss of revenue from the general deactivation of the physical campus, and increased expenses. We continue to closely monitor the expected budgetary shortfalls. In addition to the furloughs, we have taken several steps to help preserve university resources, including restrictions in capital projects, tight restrictions on discretionary spending, a hiring freeze and a salary freeze as well as voluntary salary reductions by senior leaders. 

While this is difficult news to share as it personally and professionally affects colleagues we know and care about, these steps are being taken to ensure that we emerge strong in our ability to fulfill our core academic mission on behalf of our students and their families.

We continue to share updates concerning COVID-related matters on our public health website. Please consult our updated travel policy to find newly released information on requirements, restrictions and resources. 

Thank you again to each of you for all you continue to do. You have stepped up to address our challenges in remarkable ways that have been humbling and heartening to see.

With deep appreciation,

Neville G. Pinto