by Erica Price
Faculty and administrators at Devlin University are waiting with bated breath for the announcement of results from a rather unique budget reduction exercise after the university fell short on enrollment for the fourth consecutive year.
“Things are getting desperate. We’re just out of ideas on how to cut any more than we have,” said Steve Ferguson, Director of Budget Management.
The state of the budget is so desperate that the university implemented a new exercise called “The Top Five.” Every faculty member and administrator has been asked to identify the five positions they consider the biggest waste of salary money. The results will be tabulated and the Top Five will have their positions eliminated.
In a similar approach to the popular show American Idol, the university president’s cabinet has been given one “save,” designed to allow them to protect someone they believe is in a position essential to university operations. Director of Human Resources Richard Hoff is credited with this plan.
“Last night I was up late watching the Idol episode on DVR when they saved Big Mike. That gave me the idea because he was talented, just like so many talented people here at Devlin who might deserve a second chance,” said Hoff.
“Ever since they announced this new strategy I have lowered prices in the faculty dining room and added Happy Hour at the end of the day. People love it and they love me for making these changes. I think I’m safe,” said Julia Shipmore, Director of Food Services.
Not everyone on campus is as confident as Shipmore, such as maintenance supervisor Sarah Finney.
“A pipe burst in the building I’m in charge of and we had to shut off the water for days. No one could use the bathroom for three days at work and you should have seen the nasty looks I was getting. Of course, the third day was when the survey went out and there are a lot of people who work in this building,” said Finney.
President of Devlin University Michael Tanner refused to comment on the question of whether or not his position was up for elimination in this unique process.