University of Illinois job cuts coming: Killeen

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University of Illinois President Timothy L. Killeen said Wednesday that some administrative employees will be laid off and people who retire might not be replaced as the university faces budget cuts imposed by the state’s financial crisis.

“We are looking at university administration – the larger administration,” he said. “Maybe there are job categories, some key people, that we no longer need for which attrition will take care of.”

“It’s about making sure the right talent base is in the right slot,” he said. “There are retirements pending where replacements might not be done.”

Killeen couldn’t say how many jobs will be eliminated through layoffs and attrition.

“Leadership starts at the top, and this is a first step to ensure that we manage our financial resources wisely and effectively to serve our students and the people of Illinois,” Killeen said in answering the Sun-Times’ questions after a speech to the City Club of Chicago.

Killeen, who took office as the university’s 20th president on May 18, said he will reallocate $8.2 million to support financial aid and other student programs at the school’s campuses in Urbana-Champaign, Chicago and Springfield.

University leaders identified the money during a review to examine spending and efficiency in central administration, which provides support for the campuses. The money usually is used for campus facility renovations and information technology upgrades.

Killeen said campuses will now be asked to submit proposals for a share of the funds, which could be used for need- or merit-based financial aid, minority student recruitment, counseling and placement services, and other student-centered programs.

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