HANOVER — Many Dartmouth College employees will soon see an extra $1,000 in their summer paycheck.
Citing “unique circumstances of the past year and the financial challenges” experienced by college employees during the past 14 months of the COVID-19 pandemic, Dartmouth said this week that it will be disbursing a $1,000 payment to all those earning up to $150,000 annually.
Both unionized and non-unionized employees are eligible for the special, one-time $1,000 payment, which is subject to taxes, the college said.
Dartmouth has about 3,000 employees who are eligible for the special payment, according to college spokesman Justin Anderson.
“This has been a challenging year for all of us, but for some community members the economic stress has been acute,” Rick Mills, Dartmouth executive vice president, said in an announcement of the payments on the Dartmouth website. “The special payment is one way we can express our gratitude and say thanks.”
In addition, the college administration has established a pool of money for merit raises for non-unionized staff employees. Unionized workers at Dartmouth will receive raises according to their contract.
The pool of money upon which merit raises will be drawn amounts to 2.5 percent of each “unit’s” total employee payroll, Anderson said. A unit is an administrative function such as advancement, IT, athletics, communications, human resources, finance or planning.
Faculty members are not included in the 2.5 percent merit pool but will also be eligible for merit raises handled separately.
Dartmouth said the college’s financial picture had improved significantly since the onset of the pandemic.
Bracing for a revenue shortfall, the college took a number of emergency cost-control measures, including wage freezes and a halt on most hiring, “dramatically” cutting “strategic and non-compensation expenses” and pushing back selected capital expenditure projects.
Dartmouth also incurred new expenses, such as in facilities management and dining services, involved with guarding the Dartmouth campus and student community from COVID-19 outbreaks.
“A year ago, with the economy in trouble, we did not expect to achieve the level of financial stability we currently have,” Provost Joseph Helble said in the Dartmouth announcement. “It’s a great relief to be looking forward to more normal operation and anticipating the return of students, faculty, and staff by the fall.”
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