On Tuesday, August 15, students received an email from Vice President for Finance and Administration Dr. Andrea Young, regarding changes to the student employment policy.
According to Young, the university has decided to reduce its annual expense of student employment by approximately 10% and prioritize making jobs available for students demonstrating financial need, as stated on their financial aid package.
A follow-up email from Student Employment stated, "logistically [...] students who do not currently have work study in their package are not eligible to participate in student employment at DePauw." Exceptions to this policy were made for jobs that require special skills or certifications (e.g., tutoring) and students continuing an on-campus job(s) from the previous semester.
"We believe that this change will ensure that students with financial need can receive the on-campus employment that they were promised in their financial aid packages," Young said.
In December 2022, campus representatives conducted a 7-month evaluation of institutional expenses and, as a result, have created a "sustainable five-year plan to control expenses, [...] prioritiz[ing] systemic change, rather than short-term austerity measures," according to Young.
The Board of Trustees approved this plan, now known as the Bold & Gold 2027 Strategic Plan, in May 2023.
According to DePauw University’s website, recent changes supporting the university's commitment are to "ensure DePauw's future as a Flourishing University." The university's vision includes a "Rich and Exemplary Student Experience" and a "commitment to financial and operational stewardship."
"In the Strategic Plan, we committed to being exceptional stewards of institutional resources and to reducing our annual endowment draw. Ultimately, the goal of changes to the operating budget this year and in subsequent years are to allow us to glide towards a sustainable draw from the endowment," Young said.
According to the Vice President for Academic Affairs Dr. Dave Berque, the university's minimum hourly rate increase last year has allowed students to improve their earnings while working fewer hours.
Berque said, "We are channeling our student employment resources in ways that are best aligned with the strategic plan."
The increase in minimum pay rate allows student employees to "focus more on their academic work and on work-life balance," said Berque.
The university does not foresee any changes to the student employment policy at this time due to focusing on allocating student employment resources to students with demonstrated financial need.
"We will continue to evaluate all budgetary changes," Young said.