Campus Report

Important information about health benefits from Todd Burson, vice president for finance

Office of Communications
April 29, 2019

Dear colleagues,

As many of us have experienced firsthand, Kenyon and its employees are not immune to the escalating costs of healthcare and prescription drugs. Annual premium increases for Kenyon’s plans have varied widely over the past 15 years — from as low as 2 percent to as high as 15 percent — and we recognize that this volatility can put a strain on employees’ budgets, just as it does the College’s budget.

In 2015, the College established a standing Benefits Committee — with representatives from Staff Council, Faculty Affairs Committee, Faculty Executive Committee, Human Resources and Senior Staff — to review benefits policies for all non-union employees and advise on any proposed changes. Over the past two years, the committee has gathered input on health benefits from staff and faculty, conducted an employee-wide survey and benchmarked policies with peer institutions. Employees reported that managing costs, maintaining coverage and expanding choices are top priorities.

With these goals in mind, the benefits committee invited and reviewed proposals from a range of insurance companies to identify the most competitive providers and plan designs for Kenyon employees. After reaching consensus on next steps, the committee presented a set of recommended changes to Senior Staff in February 2019, who then approved them.

The changes go into effect over two years, starting July 1, 2019, with the most substantial changes occurring in the second year, when deductibles increase in an effort to stabilize premiums. The College recognizes that this could increase healthcare costs for employees and their families, and Kenyon does not make these changes lightly. Kenyon has intentionally held deductibles and out-of-pocket maximums steady since 2003, despite changes in the national healthcare system, including the adoption of the Affordable Care Act in 2010. The new plans will be in line with plans offered by peer schools in Ohio and offer a more sustainable mix of options for both the College and employees. Detailed descriptions of the plans can be found on the human resources pages of Kenyon’s website; the changes are summarized on this page.

The College understands the impact any adjustments to benefits can have on an individual or family. Multiple informational sessions will be offered prior to the open enrollment period this spring (May 1 through June 15) and again next spring to assist you in planning for these changes. Please do not hesitate to contact Leah Miller, assistant director of human resources, if you have any questions.


Todd Burson
Vice president for finance
on behalf of the Kenyon College Benefits Committee