Protect Our Education: Stop UVM Faculty Cuts

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The University of Vermont is the second largest employer and largest public university in the state of Vermont. This means that the University has two distinct responsibilities; to protect those who rely on the University of Vermont for their livelihood, and to guarantee a quality education for its students. Recently, the University of Vermont has enacted cuts to faculty that will result in the termination of part-time faculty and a 25% pay decrease for non-tenure track faculty. This is unacceptable, and is a betrayal of the responsibilities the University holds to our community. 

Senior Administration, which is endowed with all financial decision-making power, have given themselves a voluntary 8.2% pay decrease, with an option to donate an unspecified amount to the University scholarship fund instead of taking that pay cut. Their average salary is around $300k. Meanwhile, the cuts imposed on faculty are equivalent to a 25% pay decrease on a $50k salary. This is neither just or economically prudent, as a 25% pay decrease for faculty only saves $12k a year, while the same cut on an administrative salary saves an entire faculty salary of $50k.

We, the students of the University of Vermont and the greater community thereof, are tired of seeing our fundamental interests sacrificed in order for superficial branding and administrative excess. The University apparently has enough money to pay millions in branding and consultants, but no money for its students or faculty. The University has in its possession an endowment of $467.7 Million, including investments in fossil fuel corporations, but has decided that we are not worthy of liquifying that endowment. The University has enough money to continue to give administrative pay increases, including a $150k yearly bonus for our new President and an average administrative salary of 2.5x that of the average faculty salary, but no money to maintain the lectures that make our University great, or pay them living wages so they can focus on their work.

We demand that the University of Vermont reverse these cuts, and find other ways to balance the budget deficit that they have created through branding endeavors and administrative self serving. If they do not, we will be forced to take more aggressive action to ensure the quality of our education and protect the livelihoods of our faculty.