There may be three less deans at the University of Saskatchewan following the completion of TransformUS.

The university released the much-anticipated cost-cutting plan Wednesday. The plan, as part of an effort to avoid a projected $44.5-million deficit, will permanently cut $25.3 million from the school’s annual expenses.

The number of top-level leadership positions will be cut by 23 per cent in order to make the school one of smallest U15 — a group of the top 15 national research intensive universities — in Canada, according to plan. Five top senior leadership positions had already been cut prior to the TranformUS release.

“The number of leadership positions reporting to the four vice-presidents will be reduced, including at the associate vice-president, dean, executive director and director levels,” the plan read, without specifying which positions would be cut.

“Included in these changes, proposals will be made to reduce the number of deans by three through reporting changes and structural changes.”

The plan predominantly focused on reorganizing campus services and academic offerings, but certain areas where cuts would be made were highlighted in the report.

The College of Graduate Studies and Research, the Centre for Continuing and Distance Education (CCDE), and Education and Media Access and Production (eMap) are slated to dissolve.

Certain non-credit programs offered by CCDE and deemed necessary will be divided among different university colleges. These programs fit into recommendations the university focus more on degree-credit teaching, including the English language programs, as opposed to non-degree education.

“While specifics are not known, the university will need to further trim its work force through TransformUS and other operating budget adjustment initiatives given that about 75 per cent of its operating budget is salaries and benefits,” the university said in a media release.

The TransformUS plan included recommendations to combine the School of Public Health with the Department of Community Health and Epidemiology within the College of Medicine as well as to shift several functions of the University Learning Centre to the University Library.

Deans from a handful of colleges were also tasked with reorganizing their departments.

The arts and science dean was asked to address issues of small departments, interdisciplinary programs and three-year bachelor programs. The dean of engineering was tasked with evaluating new graduate programming. The dean of medicine was asked to reduce the duplication of programs between units such as pharmacy and nutrition and biomedical sciences.

“A conclusion to be drawn is that our university seems to be over-structured and over-subdivided for a university of our size,” the report reads.

The TransformUS process was adopted by the university in January 2013. Two task forces were assigned with ranking all academic and administrative programs based on their value to campus.

Task force reports were released in December. The TransformUS plan, released Wednesday, was based on the task force recommendations.