Message to Faculty and Staff
As you know, University leaders met individually today (March 7, 2017) with about
120 staff members and administrators to let them know that their positions at SLU
have been eliminated. As our colleagues and friends leave our University, it is important
that we express our gratitude and appreciation for their service.
Today’s actions were difficult. I understand that our community may be at different
stages of processing the influx of changes. In the days and weeks ahead, I ask that
all of us are thoughtful and considerate of those who are transitioning to other employment
and those who are learning new roles at the University.
I also ask that as a community we reflect on and honor the many contributions of our
departing colleagues. They never lost sight of what matters most to us at SLU: educating our talented students
in the Catholic, Jesuit tradition, and treating our patients with exceptional, compassionate
Throughout the organization redesign process, I have discussed publicly the factors
that contributed to our need to cut costs, increase revenue, and create a nimble,
innovative, and responsive organization structure. However, sharing the changes of
the national landscape of higher education cannot explain away the complex emotions
felt by our community at this time.
Since my arrival, we made a commitment to be transparent, collaborative, and to continually
provide honest and direct communication. Although we had to be confidential in our
planning for personnel decisions of the organization redesign, we have consistently
solicited integral input and shared information. We will continue to do so.
In the spirit of open exchange, we will host a SLU community meeting and listening session from 4-5 p.m. Thursday, March 9, in the
Center for Global Citizenship on the north campus. The meeting is open to SLU staff, faculty, clinicians, and students.
Administrative offices will close at 3:45 p.m. to allow members of the SLU community
to attend. Senior University leaders and I will be on hand to field your questions
and to listen to you. In addition to asking questions during the meeting, you can submit questions in advance — anonymously if you prefer — using this online submission form.
I invite you to attend, and I thank you for all that you do every day for Saint Louis
University and its mission.
May God bless you,
Fred P. Pestello, Ph.D.