BOWLING GREEN, Ky. — Faculty and staff of Western Kentucky University (WKU) received some great news right in time for the holidays. 

What You Need To Know

  • WKU announced it is restoring faculty salaries after reducing them in May

  • Many staff members felt those salary cuts were better than job cuts

  • Salaries will be fully restored, plus a reimbursement from the amount withheld since July 1

In May the University’s Board of Regents, along with President Timothy Caboni, voted to reduce salaries, based on annual salary income, which ranged anywhere from one to ten percent.

Donor Experience Officer in the Office of Philanthropy Ryan Dearbone said many staff felt that salary cuts were a better alternative than job cuts.

“A lot more faculty and staff were of the mindset of if we can take a little cut in our salaries to get us through this time, it’ll be for the better of the university rather than actual positions and full bodies to get through the actual school year,” Dearbone said.

Taking a pay cut himself, Dearbone was elated to find out that salaries would be restored back to normal. Originally the university announced the pay cut as, precautionary, in case more changes needed to be made in light of the pandemic.

After 7 months of sacrifice, Dearbone said the restored salaries — plus a reimbursement from the amount withheld since July 1 — is coming just in time for the holidays.

“Most of us have families that we’re taking care of at this point, you know from Christmas shopping and just being able to have a little extra money in our paychecks for the holidays. I think this was the endgame and I think we’re all just glad it ended up this way and that way we’re off of the reduction and we have money for our families," Dearbone said.

WKU plans to continue with their hybrid model for the spring semester, but Dearbone says he hopes this restored normalcy will be a representation of what 2021 has to bring.

“Hopefully 2021 brings stability so where we can kind of get back focused just doing the education piece, because everything else has kind of worked itself out or at least we have a good plan of attack in case things don’t readily go back to that stability and normalcy that we kind of wanted over 2020,” Dearbone said.

Paychecks were fully restocked this week.