Loyola University New Orleans was forced to lay off 18 employees Friday after freshman enrollment dropped 30 percent lower than expected last year, according to Nola.com.
In an attempt to balance the 2013-14 budget, the Jesuit university laid off 2 percent of the school's employees, offered a voluntary severance program, and instituted a hiring freeze.
"There is never a time when it is easy to let people know their service is being ended," reportedly said Loyola President Kevin Wildes in a release. "Although it is difficult to lose any employee, we have been very strategic about minimizing the impact to our students. Our guiding principle in the changes we have made was to preserve and protect the outstanding educational experience we offer our students - an educational model built on more than 450 years of Jesuit teaching and academic excellence."
Alice Clark, a music history professor and chairwoman of the university Senate, reportedly warned that while the changes took care of the shortfall this year, a smaller freshman class is a “four year problem.”
She reportedly added that she hoped getting through this difficult time “will allow us to refocus, to get a better sense of who we are, how we're distinctive, what we really do have to offer students and faculty and others.”
Loyola New Orleans is not alone. Earlier this year, The Cardinal Newman Society reported that another Jesuit institution, Xavier University in Ohio, laid off 31employees and did not fill 20 other vacant jobs after severe budgetary shortfalls.
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