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UVA President's 4-Year Plan Includes Faculty Pay Raises - NBC29 WVIR Charlottesville, VA News, Sports and Weather

UVA President's 4-Year Plan Includes Faculty Pay Raises

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University of Virginia President Teresa Sullivan says $5 million will be needed next year to fund faculty raises. The Board of Visitors is throwing its support behind the plan to prevent 'the best of the best' from leaving the university.

President Teresa Sullivan says they've got the money covered for next year. After that, it would likely come out of the endowment fund.

UVA President Teresa Sullivan has a plan to boost faculty salaries - a plan those on the receiving end say is desperately needed.

"We have had faculty who have been without any kind of raise for five years.  They are talented," said Gweneth West, a member of the UVA Faculty Senate.

The university's payroll is currently ranked 26th among peer universities. The plan is to boost it into the top 20 by 2017.

Under Sullivan's four-year plan, the first year will cost $5 million. Sullivan is banking on state money for raises to help.

"We'll make up the rest of the money through operational efficiencies which we've already identified," said Sullivan.

The Board of Visitors has put its support behind the plan, which will likely tap into UVA's $5.7 billion dollar endowment fund in future years.

"That ensures as the endowment is paid out every year that some of these faculty salaries are permanently underwritten by endowment," said Sullivan.

Sullivan says several foundations are now interested in raising endowment money to fund future faculty salaries and the Board of Visitors' vote of support will encourage the fundraising to begin.

"It is important to retain our best faculty at the University of Virginia.  So we want to make sure our faculty aren't basically stolen to other universities," said Christopher Holstege, chair-elect of UVA's faculty senate.

Sullivan and the board agree faculty raises are the top priority right now. 

A refined version of the financial plan will go before the board by May 21.  

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