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Education

UT San Antonio Lays Off 300+ Employees Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

Bicycles line up outside HEB Student Union on the UTSA campus July 23, 2019.
Camille Phillips | Texas Public Radio
Bicycles line up outside HEB Student Union on the UTSA campus July 23, 2019.

The University of Texas at San Antonio has laid off more than 300 employees as part of a university-wide effort to cut about 10% of its budget for the upcoming fiscal year.

The layoffs include 69 adjunct faculty members and 243 other staff members, primarily from the Academic and Business Affairs offices.

UTSA also eliminated 149 vacant positions, including 12 tenure-track faculty positions.

Affected employees will be released from work Wednesday but continue to receive salary and benefits through the end of August.

The university is expecting a nearly $36 million reduction in revenue next year due to enrollment declines and cuts in state funding.

In a letter sent to faculty and staff, University President Taylor Eighmy said he was saddened to know that UTSA colleagues were losing their jobs during the uncertain times caused by the pandemic.

"I know this will be hard on our community and very painful for those directly affected by today’s personnel actions,” he said in a statement. "To those of you who will be leaving UTSA, I am truly sorry. This is not your fault."

"The longer-term economic realities of the pandemic point to anticipated impacts to UTSA’s revenue and further reductions in state appropriations in 2022-23, meaning we must implement some very difficult decisions now."

He added there will likely be fewer hourly campus positions available to students this academic year. Work study positions will be unaffected though, as these are funded through the federal government as financial aid packages.

University officials is also encouraging staff members who have been laid off to apply for 55 positions posted created during the budget reduction process as part of unit reorganizations.

UTSA had 6,850 employees during the spring semester, including 2,874 students and 1,323 faculty members.

Camille Phillips can be reached at Camille@TPR.org and on Twitter at @cmpcamille.

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