March 4, 2024

Dear UD Faculty and Staff,

We want to thank you for your flexibility, resilience and commitment following the campus-wide communication on Feb. 6 pertaining to the near- and longer-term financial challenges across higher education and the University of Delaware. Our mission, success and impact always begin with our people, and we are grateful for your understanding, dedication and feedback as we work through these challenges, together. Even in this difficult moment, first and foremost we remain committed to the sustained excellence of the top-ranked education, world-renowned research, dedicated service, and unparalleled campus experiences that define the University of Delaware. That commitment will never stop, and realizing its potential will require a united effort.  

Over the past several weeks, we have shared updates on this topic in various ways, including a presentation to the Delaware General Assembly Joint Finance Committee, meetings with the Faculty Senate and its executive and budget committees, the Chairs’ Caucus and senior administrators and trustees, as well as through information posted online. Still, we understand additional questions and concerns have emerged relating to budget mitigation strategies and/or the interpretation and implementation of guidelines at the unit level. 

To that end, and based on frequently asked questions, we have made revisions and issued clarifications related to several matters of interest to the academic community, including faculty hiring and renewal of temporary appointments, sabbatical leaves, research-related travel, start-up packages, salary adjustments based on collective bargaining agreements, and other areas. For guidance, we encourage you to consult the cost-saving measures and guidelines page (UDelNet ID required), which we will continue to update. 

In addition, we will organize a listening tour to all colleges over the next two weeks, engaging with faculty and staff to answer questions and hear your ideas regarding strategies to both mitigate current budget challenges as well as transform any obstacles into opportunities. What we and the members of our leadership teams hear from you will inform our decisions about the rest of this semester and in future academic years. As always, please also continue to work through any needs and questions with senior leaders of your respective campus units. 

The steps and thoughtful action that we take today will ensure a bright future for our institution. With our unwavering commitment to shared values and unity, we are certain that our UD community will persevere through these challenges and continue to excel. We look forward to continued engagement on this topic and thank you for your continued dedication, support and understanding. 

Dennis Assanis

Laura Carlson

University of Delaware   •   Newark, DE   •