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Restoration of pay and benefits as of April 1

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Jeremy Haefner

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Effective April 1:

The salaries for all faculty and staff who experienced reductions will be restored.

Retirement benefits will be restored.

Individuals making under $90k annually will receive a two percent cost-of-living pay increase.

Dear DU faculty and staff,

I am very pleased to announce that, this afternoon, the University of Denver Board of Trustees has approved, effective April 1, the restoration of salaries for all faculty and staff who experienced reductions this academic year, the restoration of retirement benefits for all faculty and staff, and a 2% cost-of-living pay increase for those individuals making below $90k, including adjunct faculty. In addition, most furloughed employees — largely those working in the Ritchie Center, the Newman Center for the Performing Arts, and in Conference and Event Services — have returned to work.

The Board and I are very happy to be able to restore these salaries and benefits and offer a cost-of-living adjustment for those in our community who may have felt the financial impact of the pandemic most acutely. The University deeply values its faculty and staff for their talents and immeasurable role in advancing the collective goals of the community. The loss of full salary for some and full retirement benefits for all was a hard sacrifice in a year defined by sacrifices. By temporarily reducing these expenses, the University has been able to effectively mitigate the spread of COVID-19 through costly and expansive testing, purchasing technology to aid in online learning, setting up on-campus spit labs, establishing vaccination events and other measures.

Our success is owed to the sacrifice and dedication of you, DU’s faculty and staff. It is also thanks to sound fiscal management during this crisis and steady, strong enrollment numbers.

Here are the details:

In July 2020, tiered salary reductions were instituted for those who earn over $90k annually. These individuals will see the restoration of their full salary effective April 1, 2021, and in their first paycheck after April 1, whether paid monthly or bi-monthly. For employees who have nine-month contracts (primarily faculty), their earnings for academic year 2020-2021 will be adjusted so that they also receive one-fourth of their annualized pay at their full salary.
All benefited staff (full- and part-time) and faculty (including adjunct faculty) making $90k or less will receive a 2% cost of living pay increase effective April 1, 2021, and will receive it in their first paycheck after April 1. This will begin for biweekly employees in their April 16 paycheck and for monthly employees with the May 1 paycheck. For employees with nine-month contracts (primarily faculty), their earnings for academic year 2020-2021 will be adjusted so that they receive the 2% cost-of-living increase for one-fourth of their annual pay. For adjuncts, their course pay for spring term will be increased by 2%.
DU’s retirement matching contribution will be restored from the temporarily reduced 4% to the full 8% match, effective April 1, 2021. This will align with the pay changes above. The result will be a 4% percent match for three-fourths of the fiscal year and an 8% match for one-fourth of the fiscal year.
The merit process for receiving bonuses or raises (outside the newly approved cost-of-living increase) will remain suspended until summer 2022. We eagerly look forward to being able to restore this process, as it is essential to recognizing the incredible work and talent at the University.

While we are very happy to be able to make these changes, the COVID-19 mitigation costs continue to be quite high and the effects of the pandemic remain unpredictable. We must continue to exercise caution and fiscal restraint for the rest of FY21. For now, the freezes on non-essential hiring and the suspension of access to gainshare funds will continue.

Thank you, DU. I am proud of this community, and I am grateful for your understanding and your patience as we continue to navigate this incredibly dynamic crisis together. 

If you have questions about these changes or about DU’s compensation and benefits, please contact


Jeremy Haefner