By Brittney Jackson | The Duquesne Duke
Over the summer, Duquesne raised its minimum wage to $15 per hour for all full-time and part-time employees.
Before the University made the change in July, the minimum wage was $14 per hour.
According to Duquesne President Charles Dougherty, approximately 40 employees will benefit from the increase in wage. These employees include office assistants and parking garage employees.
The increase will not affect faculty members compensated through annual contracts, employees for university contractors such as Parkhurst and Starbucks and any unionized employee who receives union wages.
Dougherty said the increase demonstrates Duquesne’s commitment to fundamental values.
“Our fundamental values start with people who work for us and with us and this shows we really care about our employees and we serve God not only about serving students by also by serving those who are serving students,” Dougherty said.
Combined with health care benefits, retirement benefits and tuition remission, the minimum wage is equivalent to $21 per hour, according to Dougherty.
According to the U.S. Department of Labor the federal minimum wage and the Pennsylvania minimum wage is currently $7.25 per hour.
Dougherty and University administration began increasing the minimum wage five years ago, when the wage was set at $9.50 per hour.
According to Karen Matthis, a desk aide and Duquesne employee of six-and-a-half years, the increase in minimum wage means a lot.
“It makes you feel valued,” Matthis said. “That the University thinks a lot of their employees and we’re worth that.”
Dougherty said he will continue to pay close attention to cost of living and inflation, and that he does not foresee any serious issues with continuing to raise the minimum wage.