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University of Evansville shares COVID updates, furloughs employees

(photo courtesy of the University of Evansville)

EVANSVILLE, Ind. (Inside INdiana Business) – The University of Evansville is detailing new guidelines for its campus amid the coronavirus pandemic. The university says its steps, which include employee furloughs, are designed to preserve its financial resources and leverage the CARES Act federal stimulus program.

In an open letter, University of Evansville President Christopher Pietruszkiewicz outlined the university’s updated action plan and said the safety and well-being of its campus community continues to be the priority.

The university estimates that 100 employees will be furloughed beginning May 11. The university says it will continue to provide full benefits to furloughed employees.

Administration and staff, including athletics, will see a temporary salary reduction and the university is encouraging faculty to take voluntary pay reductions. The reductions will be in effect through July 25.

Additional actions being taken by UE include:

  • Extending the current COVID-19 Leave Policy until May 8
  • Freezing nonessential travel through the 2020 – 2021 fiscal year
  • Implementing a hiring freeze for nonessential staff
  • Suspending the University’s contributions to TIAA retirement and VEBA Trust accounts for the 2020-2021 fiscal year
  • Implementing temporary furloughs and reducing salaries through July 25

The university says its proactive efforts to reimburse room and board for students from the University of Evansville campus and Harlaxton College have totaled approximately $2.3 million in refunds. The university says it can recover some of the expenses through the stimulus program, but this and other factors are consuming university resources. 

The university says its plan aims to bring back furloughed employees as soon as possible.