Temple University will not furlough any workers amid financial difficulties resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, President Richard Englert announced in an email to faculty, students and staff today.
The announcement comes as several universities across the country announced they are furloughing employees as a result of steep revenue losses from the pandemic, Forbes reported.
Temple is facing projected losses of approximately $45 million from refunding the cost of housing, meal plans and parking passes as well as canceled conferences and anticipated declining state funding and student enrollment, Englert wrote. The projection is down from an initial estimate that projected losses closer to $60 million, he wrote.
In his email, Englert reiterated that Temple had instituted an administrative hiring freeze, asked departments to prepare for a 5-percent budget cut for the 2020-21 fiscal year and cut salaries of upper-level administrators and non-bargaining employees making more than $100,000. Englert himself took a 20-percent pay cut, he wrote.
The university also asked all departments to cut spending as much as possible immediately, which resulted in some budget savings, Englert wrote.
“While intended to be temporary, these reductions will continue until further notice,” he wrote.
The steps Temple is taking are similar to those they took during the 2008 financial crisis, The Temple News reported.
“Temple has weathered many crises in its long history, owing in large part to the commitment of you, its dedicated faculty and staff,” Englert wrote. “We have no doubt Temple will continue its mission of providing the finest quality education in the months and years ahead.”
While Temple received $28 million from the federal government through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act as part of a $14 billion package for postsecondary institutions, half of that must go toward emergency cash grants for students. The remaining funds, which are intended to help institutions cover costs associated with the pandemic, will not be able to cover all the costs caused by the pandemic, Englert wrote.
“These past six weeks have seen unparalleled upheaval and simultaneously revealed the amazing ability of the Temple community to adapt and overcome,” Englert wrote.
The university will send more information out to the Temple community in the upcoming weeks, Englert wrote.