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When COVID-19 began forcing our country to work from home and many of our favorite businesses temporarily closed their doors, it was only a matter of time before the related financial effects began touching everyone.
Sadly, higher education was not immune. Both public and private institutions are struggling with how to continue serving their students while dealing with the dual hits of revenue loss and increasing expenses. Today, I wanted to let you know where we stand.
At the start of the coronavirus crisis, we implemented austerity measures and began looking for innovative ways to reduce expenses and raise revenues without harming or risking any of our employees or their positions. We reached out to all of you for your ideas and thank you to all who provided ideas – we are smarter as a team than we are individually.
Going forward, as with other higher education institutions, we anticipate a reduction in our funding which may be more significant in FY22 than in FY21. Fortunately, we may be in a better position to weather these potential budget cuts than many of our peers. Florida Poly is a young, small institution carefully and deliberately built to be efficient and agile. We consciously centralized operations, minimized administrative overhead and improved our efficiency through efforts like the Lean Six Sigma program. We focused our resources on the academic enterprise, which is growing conservatively with quality. These characteristics are part of our culture and should help us weather funding cuts.
The cabinet and Emergency Management Team continue meeting often and are working to ensure we carefully and safely move our University forward during this uncertain time. I appointed a task force to work on a Campus Resiliency Plan that advances the academic mission in this constantly changing environment by creating a flexible plan for bringing students back to campus. We are also monitoring developments within the state and nation and will continue updating and informing everyone as we consider how and when we reopen the institution for employees.
While furloughs and layoffs may be happening at other institutions, we are doing everything possible to guard against this and protect our dedicated employees. Thank you for all you do and let’s work together to make Florida Poly the vanguard it was meant to be.
Director of Communications