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Dartmouth to cut 60 staff jobs

Dartmouth announced a budget reconciliation plan to cut $72 million from its $700 million operating budget by 2011, according to a Monday press release. The reductions include $47 million from the budget for undergraduate education.

As part of the plan - which reduces the operating budget by about 10 percent - Dartmouth will lay off 60 staff members. Last month, an additional 70 staff members accepted retirement offers, according to the press release. Another 28 staff employees will have reduced hours.

The layoff package will include two weeks' pay for each consecutive year worked at Dartmouth, as well as a stipend that goes to health benefits for three months, career counseling and consideration as internal candidates for any open position.

Tenured and tenure-track positions will not be eliminated, but the school will freeze most salaries for the 2010 fiscal year. Exceptions will be made for faculty who receive promotions or tenure.

"Approving these reductions, especially those affecting staff employees, has been one of the most difficult decisions of my presidency, but they are necessary to maintain Dartmouth's strength," wrote Dartmouth President James Wright in a letter to the school community on Monday.

Despite the staff cuts, Dartmouth will increase its financial aid budget by 13 percent, though it will also raise tuition by 4.8 percent.

The school will not change its newly expanded financial aid policy, which offers free tuition to students of families earning $75,000 per year or less.

Dartmouth has already instituted an external hiring freeze and delayed construction and reorganizing projects.

We all regret the impact these reductions will have on our colleagues," Wright wrote. "I am confident (however) that with these changes Dartmouth is positioned well for the future."



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