Furman University on Monday announced that it was cutting its baseball and men’s lacrosse programs and implementing furloughs and budget cuts due to the financial impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Since the beginning of the crisis, we have been focused on prioritizing the health and safety of the Furman community while working to ensure that our students are able to make progress in their academic programs,” Furman President Elizabeth Davis said in a statement.
The cuts come as the university saw a dramatic reduction in revenue after moving to remote student instruction in March. The university was forced to refund millions of dollars in room and board fees while incurring new costs related to the pandemic, according to a release.
Canceled camps, conferences and other events through the summer resulted in additional losses. At the same time, the value of the university’s endowment dropped by more than $100 million.
“The combined losses in tuition and other revenues, along with the added costs of the pandemic, are expected to result in a multimillion-dollar deficit for Furman in the coming fiscal year,” the release said.
Additional cuts announced include:
- A voluntary 20% salary reduction for the president and voluntary 10% salary reduction for the vice presidents, athletics director, head coaches for football and men’s basketball, and other more highly compensated employees.
- A 5.5% reduction in operating budgets for the next fiscal year.
- Summer furloughs for employees with diminished workloads, and two weeks of furloughs for all other employees.
Furman will honor the scholarships of current and incoming student-athletes in baseball and men’s lacrosse for the remainder of their undergraduate academic careers at the university.