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Message Sent To:All Faculty, All Staff
Message From:Message from the Office of the President
Date Sent:Tuesday, October 6, 2020 12:00 PM CDT

Fiscal Year 2021 Budget and Financial Update

Dear Loyola Faculty and Staff,

The Loyola University Chicago leadership team is most grateful to the entire University community during this challenging time. University faculty, staff, and leaders have demonstrated creativity, resiliency, sacrifice, compassion for each other’s livelihood, and a commitment to our Jesuit, Catholic mission, all of which allowed us to achieve the milestones we share with you today.

We write today to inform you that:

  • The staff furlough/reduction-in-force process has concluded with fewer members of our community impacted;
  • University-wide efforts to close the budget gap had a direct and positive impact on the final cost savings and revenue projections;
  • We have successfully balanced the FY21 budget at this time as required, but the spring and summer enrollments across all divisions will be critical;
  • We need your help as we move forward together with student retention efforts.

Process for Achieving the Reduction Goal
As the Loyola community is aware, Dr. Jo Ann Rooney has been providing regular updates on the University’s current fiscal year budget since May 7. A few weeks ago, we announced Phase III decisions including the need to identify savings from staff furloughs and other reductions across the University.

Since the September 18 announcement but prior to implementation, we received constructive feedback from the University community to preserve as many staff positions as possible. Academic and support services leadership across Loyola reached deep to identify additional budget reduction opportunities. During this time, we have also continued to engage with University constituents such as University Senate, Faculty Council, advisory groups, and numerous schools and divisions in the spirit of shared commitment and responsibility.

As a result of these shared efforts, we have concluded the process of notifying any staff whose positions will be furloughed or eliminated. Because of the extra effort on the part of many across the University, and especially when the extent of the impact on staff became apparent, we have been able to greatly reduce the number of anticipated staff reductions while still closing the budget gap. Departments and schools throughout Loyola have identified additional budget savings in a variety of areas for this fiscal year.

We believe we have planned for the total financial impact for FY21 (including any revenue shortfalls that might result from the upcoming spring semester). Therefore, unless there are significant and unanticipated changes to our enrollments, retention, or financial aid assumptions, we have completed the difficult and challenging work of balancing our budget for this year through June 30, 2021.

How You Can Help: Student Retention
The upcoming spring semester and summer I term will also provide us an opportunity to outperform our current projections. Retention of our current undergraduate students into the spring, increased spring enrollments across all programs, the cadence of our operating budget spending, and a robust summer term (that could include a residential component) all have the opportunity to increase our revenue projections for this year.

This is where you can help. Last week, the provost and deans identified a number of areas within their schools that could utilize Loyolans to help make sure we are doing all we can in outreach to our current and prospective students. We will need to work especially hard to stay in close contact with our students across all levels and divisions to retain them for the spring.

In addition, a number of new freshmen have indicated to us a desire to start in January after taking a break during the fall semester. If you are able to commit 10 or so hours per week in this effort, please contact COVID-19Volunteer@LUC.eduand we will match you up with a representative in one of the schools. Your knowledge of Loyola and experience here will be helpful toward these efforts. Please secure your supervisor’s support to assist in this effort.

In Summary
Our hope is that the financial assumptions we have made, along with the additional effort toward ensuring a strong spring, will affirm our budget targets and build toward full recovery. Should we begin to see favorable trends after our spring “10th of term” student enrollments are finalized (around mid-January), we may be able to slowly restore valued employee benefits and begin investing in areas of greatest potential. While there will be many competing areas of importance, our top priority remains bringing back furloughed staff where possible and restoring as much of the University’s retirement contributions for faculty and staff as soon as possible.

All of us are most grateful and appreciative for the extra work and commitment of time and talent of our faculty and staff as we have met the challenges of these unprecedented times. None of our reduction decisions have been easy and we will continue to engage with the Loyola community as the academic year progresses.

We can all take comfort that we have moved strategically, thoughtfully, and compassionately toward resolving a budget shortfall that none of us could have imagined. Our University-wide commitment to our Jesuit and Catholic values have carried us through this period and will ensure that Loyola will emerge from this period operationally and financially strong and able to meet the new challenges of the post-pandemic higher education landscape.

Thank you for all you do for Loyola,

Jo Ann Rooney, JD, LLM, EdD, President
President’s Cabinet
The Council of Deans