File this story under higher ed bubble.

Nick Anderson reports at the Washington Post.

Howard University cuts 84 staff positions

Howard University cut 84 staff positions this week, an action the university said was “necessary to ensure long-term financial stability.”

It marked the third straight year Howard has announced reductions in its workforce. The latest cuts were disclosed Friday in a brief statement e-mailed by a university spokeswoman, Rachel Mann.

“The decision to reduce staff is never an easy one,” the statement said. “University leadership carefully evaluated a variety of options before concluding that eliminating these positions was necessary to ensure long-term financial stability for the University. We do not expect this decision to have any adverse impact on student services or their academic studies.”

University officials said the cut did not affect their hospital staff. They declined to elaborate on the types of positions that were cut, and there was no immediate word on the size of the staff remaining on the payroll. Nor did the statement describe in any detail the financial issues driving the cut.

Howard, one of the nation’s top historically black universities, has faced some fiscal challenges in recent years. In 2013, the university announced that it was cutting 75 staff positions. Last year, it said it was cutting about 200 positions. At the time of the 2014 announcement, a spokeswoman said the university had 5,474 employees, including its hospital staff. There was no immediate word Friday on how many employees remain after the latest cuts.