Some TCC faculty asked to volunteer for early retirement

NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) – Tidewater Community College administrators have asked certain faculty to volunteer for early retirement, for an incentive.

To qualify for the voluntary early retirement TCC professors must be full time, at least 60-years-old and have worked at least 10 years at the college.

“Nobody likes doing reductions in force, but in this situation, it’s a necessity,” Vice President of Institutional Advancement Marian Anderfuren told 10 On Your Side.

Nearly two weeks ago, an email to certain faculty detailed the news.

TCC President Edna Baehre-Kolovani wrote that full-time professors in four disciplines have the option to leave.

Some of the challenges are centered around the number of students taking classes.

“Enrollments during the great recession shot way up from about 2009 to about 2012 and they’ve been gradually leveling off and declining,” Anderfuren said.

To put that into perspective during the 2016-2017 school year full time enrollment was 31 percent lower than it was 5 years ago.

Click here to read the Early Retirement Program information packet 

“We haven’t seen that turnaround yet,” Anderfuren said.

Additionally, last year all colleges and universities in Virginia were required to reduce budgets by 4.2%

This, coupled with the enrollment decline, required TCC to reduce its 2016-17 budget by $8.5 million.

To do that they eliminated vacant positions, cut the operating budget and had 27 layoffs.

“The college increased its staff during that period of growth but now we have to right size not just the teaching faculty but also the staff to serve the population of students we currently have,” Anderfuren said.

To increase enrollment the college is working to target its recruitment and personally follow up with those who express interest.

TCC wants to be considered by anyone preparing to get a job or attend a 4-year college or university.

“Just because TCC is in your backyard, don’t overlook it,” Anderfuren said.

There could possibly be another round of layoffs in the coming months.