GU Cuts Budget, Holds Virtual Graduations

As with other schools, responses to the novel coronavirus pandemic has left Georgetown University with no spring 2020 commencement ceremonies on its front lawn and a shortfall in its operating budget.

The university will offer employees a nine-week furlough or salary reduction, suspend contributions to retirement funds and undertake no new construction during the summer. Last month, the school announced that it would hold off on new hiring, salary increases and nonessential spending.

Georgetown University President John DeGioia said in a May 12 statement that the university can expect a shortfall of $50 million before the fall semester begins.

The April and May cuts — including a reduction in pay for 54 top university administrators — should provide a savings of $100 million for the school, he added.

“Over the past five weeks, the implications of the crisis have become clearer,” DeGioia wrote. “Even more challenging than responding to the impact for this fiscal year is trying to imagine the financial requirements for the coming academic year … We will be continuing to review and assess our financial position, as the external situation evolves. Additional steps may become necessary, including actions affecting employment and compensation and other cost reduction measures, as we confront the challenge of responding to COVID-19 over these next few months.”

Georgetown University’s endowment is estimated to be $1.8 billion.

Meanwhile, the university is overseeing virtual graduation ceremonies on Facebook for the class of 2020 on Thursday, May 14, Friday, May 15, and over the weekend.


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