PULLMAN, Wash. - Washington State University President Kirk Schulz has received a five-year contact extension including a 10% salary reduction along with other voluntary cutbacks.
The extension was approved by the WSU Board of Regents at a recent meeting.
“In the interest of stability and continuity, it was important to the Board of Regents that we offer a five-year extension to the president’s contract,” Brett Blankenship, chair of the WSU Board of Regents, said. “Despite the many challenges facing Washington State University and higher education in general, WSU remains on a glide path to continued success.”
In response to financial hardships during the COVID-19 pandemic, Schulz opted to take a 10% pay cut and forego a $50,000 retention bonus called for in his original contract with WSU. That pay reduction is scheduled for the next year through June 30, 2021.
“I am grateful and honored by the support the Board of Regents has extended to me during my time as President,” Schulz said. “WSU is fortunate to have such a strong board guiding the direction of our university. The Board of Regents are steadfastly focused on WSU’s land-grant mission. Together we are continuing to make a positive impact all across the state of Washington and around the world.”
Schulz is additionally giving up access to a Seattle condominium owned by WSU as well as university-provided vehicles, which have been allotted to him in his original contract. The condo had been purchased prior to Schulz's WSU tenure for overnight Puget Sound trips, but will now be sold with proceeds benefiting future WSU operations.
“Everyone within the university will have to share in the pain of the difficult financial situation brought on by COVID-19, but President Schulz has led the way with his voluntary reduction in salary and other contractual benefits,” Blankenship said.
Schulz spoke with KHQ back in May, saying the school plans to hold in-person classes and hopes to be able to cheer on athletic programs during the 2020-21 academic year.
"Our goal is to have an in-person instructional experience at all of our campuses in the fall. I know some places that hemmed and hawed, people saw the Cal State system elected to go online for the fall," Dr. Schulz said. "We felt that the educational experience that's apart of being a Coug is something that we really wanted to preserve as much as possible."