The OIT walks a budget tightrope

The Office of Information Technology’s budget cut leaves student employees with far fewer work hours.

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The entrance of the Office of Technology Information. Photo by Maddie Ciliento ‘25.

On Nov. 7, student employees at the Office of Information Technology (OIT) were shocked to receive an email regarding a recent budget cut. After budget constraints, the department was required to limit student workers’ hours to 22 per month, resulting in approximately five hours of work per week. In addition to the cut hours, students’ work schedules have also been changed to reflect the budget cut. While their hourly pay rate remains the same, students acknowledged the drastic effect this budget cut would have on their foreseeable paychecks.

In the email, OIT Client Support Specialist Amaury Duran also explained that “This will take effect immediately as we have to try to get ahead of a budget shortfall. Forgive me for this sudden and unfortunate news as I am just learning of this and sharing the news quickly…In addition to the budget change for the foreseeable future, hours that become available by students, who miss work, will not be allowed to be picked up by others. Also, during holiday breaks, no hours/shifts will be available as we’re trying to keep within budget hours. I will let everyone know if anything changes in the future. I appreciate your patience during this time of change.”

Student workers in the OIT, also known as “Helpdesk Associates,” are trained to assist with technology troubleshooting and setup for faculty, students and staff. Their typical work consists of helping those who come in person to the office with concerns regarding their devices. They also answer phone calls and provide support, transferring the call to other professionals in the office when needed.

The student employees are grateful for the opportunities given to them through the OIT, however, some are disappointed by this recent budget cut.

Britney Bonhomme ‘24, a current student worker for OIT shared “I am stunned and disappointed. I would’ve never seen this coming and I do well at my job like everyone else. They changed everyone’s schedules, so people now have to work around their new hours. Luckily my hours were not cut by too much, but I know someone else who works at OIT and their hours were cut by over 50 percent which is crazy. I can’t imagine losing that many hours of work under such short notice”

Nadia Maurice ‘25, another student worker for OIT said “There is a limited budget for the OIT Office and Media Services. Unfortunately, the budget cuts forced our department to cut back on hours and possibly employees, as well as take away the option for picking up extra shifts. It’s sad that this happened right before the holidays but I understand it is out of our control.”

“I don’t work as much as other people since I have other jobs but it’s definitely not ideal,” shared Steven Belloise ‘25. “I feel bad for people who have this job as their main source of income but I don’t think it’s anyone’s fault.”

The cut in work hours and other policies regarding covering shifts is expected to continue into the spring semester of 2024, leaving student workers disappointed yet understanding of why their hours were cut in the first place.

Matthew '25 is a double major in Biology and French. When he's not in class or writing for the paper, he is usually swimming, skiing, playing volleyball, lifeguarding, or listening to music!

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