Archive for Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Kansas college leaders: Pay issues draining universities of high-quality staff

November 17, 2010, 4:52 p.m. Updated November 17, 2010, 5:13 p.m.


Leaders of several of Kansas' public universities said Wednesday that their staffs are getting raided because of the lack of state pay raises.

“A number of us have fought battles over the past two years to keep faculty,” said Kansas University Chancellor Bernadette Gray-Little.

“The harm is not uniform. You lose the most outstanding, competitive faculty,” Gray-Little said at a meeting of the Council of Presidents.

Kansas State University President Kirk Schulz said he understands when a faculty member leaves to take a position at a top school in that faculty member’s field. But Schulz said he is concerned because he is seeing faculty members going to similar or lessor institutions for salaries that K-State can't offer.

He also said the flat salaries have resulted in some faculty leaving who are in mid-career and at the top of their productivity.

“Those are the ones that really hurt,” he said.

Following a historic drop in tax revenue over the past two years, state funding to higher education has been cut by $100 million or 12 percent.

At KU and some of the other institutions, that has meant no pay raises for faculty and staff for two years.

The Kansas Board of Regents has requested the Legislature approve a $50 million funding increase for higher education for the next school year.

Emporia State University President Michael Lane said, “We are not asking for the world. Just to give some people a thank you for what they've been doing the last three years.”

Pittsburg State University President Steve Scott said he has been losing some faculty to the private sector but that trend is starting to reverse because of the shaky economy.

But presidents at Wichita State University and Fort Hays State University said they haven't seen any noticeable loss of faculty due to the salary constraints.

Ed Hammond, the president of Fort Hays State University, said he believes the problem hasn’t hit his campus because the university is growing rapidly, through its virtual college and establishment of a program in China.

“When you are growing, more people are willing to stay because they see opportunity,” Hammond said. Also, Fort Hays State offers tuition reimbursement to the children of faculty and staff.

Hammond and Gray-Little also noted that competition for faculty at research universities, such as KU, is more aggressive, especially with professors who have huge grants to fund research.

Some of the universities' leaders said the lack of pay increases has caused “compression.” That is where new employees are hired at the same or higher level than what longtime employees are making. The higher level is driven by the market, while the veteran employees’ salaries are held down because of budget constraints.

That causes some staff to feel the only way they can make more money is to leave for another school, they said.

Gray-Little, who is chair of the Council of Presidents, said she would gather more exact information from the other schools on salary issues and departing staff and present that data to the Kansas Board of Regents and other policymakers.

She said that while she understands the state’s fiscal situation is difficult, she wants to raise the visibility of the issue of salaries and perhaps explore alternative funding sources to provide pay increases.

Gray-Little said she has no specifics yet, but noted that some schools have been able to provide small salary bumps by re-allocating funds or dedicating a portion of tuition revenue to an increase.


Shardwurm 6 years ago

Rot in hell.

This just scalds me.

How much is enough? Really? Would three billion dollars a year be enough to sate the appetite of this monster?

People are really getting tired of hearing how badly education (mostly educators) are suffering when all of us have taken a beating over the last 3 years. Shut up and be thankful you're employed like those of us lucky enough to still have work.

I'll go further and say pack your @$*! and get out. We'll hire someone else who needs work, pay them less, get the same results, and lower tuition.

How's that?

AnonymousBosch 6 years ago

It's not BS. Educators and education suffer in a bad economy, and they're necessary to help people get out of bad situations. It's not the faculty you should be wanting to run out of town; it's the overpaid bureaucratic administrators and athletic department bureaucrats. You won't get the same results if you pay faculty less - you'll get less quality teachers and people who don't care about doing well but are just desperate to get a job. Those with the actual skills to benefit KU won't be available because they'll be competitive for jobs elsewhere.

Shardwurm 6 years ago're still living under the misnomer that all of us still believe that quality of professor in an undergraduate degree means anything.

Some of us got our education years ago and can't remember the name of a single instructor. Why? Because they just went through the paces...not unlike the ones today.

It's a scam...we're being ripped off...and only those who - obviously like you - are suckling on the taxpayer's teat would say otherwise.

Explain how tuition has gone up over 400 percent above inflation since 1980? The cost of books perhaps?

justoneperson 6 years ago

How many computer labs were there on campus in 1980? What about science labs with computer-assistance? How about online libraries? Or statistical software? What was the condition of student recreation, or health services?

Hudson Luce 6 years ago

There was no such thing as a "personal computer" in 1980. KU had a Honeywell mainframe, and students could get timesharing accounts on it; I got my first timesharing account in 1978, and I could access the computer over a telephone modem running at about 192 baud. The procedure was to call the "data number" at the Academic Computer Center on your phone, wait for the whistling noise of the carrier, quickly put the phone receiver in the foam rubber acoustic coupler, and hit "return" and log in. Timesharing terminals were all around campus. The only program which you could use to do "word processing" then was TeX, invented in 1978, and just beginning to be used in electronic publishing. Computers were not widely used in science in labs per se, you used the mainframe, but that was for research, and not many undergrads did that. KU had the full SAS statistical software suite and other research software was likewise state-of-the-art. Student health services were free, and student recreational services were better, cheaper, and more widely available than nowadays.

Hudson Luce 6 years ago

one other thing - computer graphics as we know them today did not exist.

justoneperson 6 years ago

Yes, my point. The techonology of today did not exist years ago, and the degree of what was available is not comparable. Putting in computer labs costs money.

Student rec centers were better? Have you seen the student rec center? That required money, regardless of what you think of its quality.

Thinking_Out_Loud 6 years ago

The increase in costs of education are not due solely to inflationary reasons. Much of the cause has to do with the simultaneous decrease in State support.

Oh, and Shardwurm, you're under the misconception that misnomer is a synonym for misconception.

parrothead8 6 years ago

Sure. Go hire Joe the Plumber to teach your kids' college classes.

Education can't succeed if you run it like a business.

Shardwurm 6 years ago

Can you sit there with a straight face and tell me that a BA in Sociology is worth $80,000? That's what a typical middle-class average student would pay for that over for years.

Sadly...Joe the Plumber will make more than most of our youth after getting a degree at KU.

Thanks for using him as an analogy.

parrothead8 6 years ago

An incoming freshman this year, graduating in four years, will pay around $35,000-40,000 in tuition, fees, and books.

The rest of your $80,000 is made up of living expenses like rent, meals, gas, bills, beer, etc.. Those are expenses they'd have to deal with regardless of whether or not they were college students.

In 2008, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics estimated that the average sociologist made $75,460. Not bad. They pegged the average salary of a plumber in 2008 at $49,200. Not too shabby either.

Thanks for using Sociology as an example.

Hudson Luce 6 years ago

This has to be BS. a friend of mine two years out of high school, as an apprentice millwright was making $35,000. I think we need to differentiate between employed sociologists, and people with sociology degrees; I'd bet that comparatively few people with the degree actually get jobs in the field, and the same is true for the rest of the liberal arts.

IraMeanwell 6 years ago

"Education can't succeed if you run it like a business."

Let's give it a try and see what happens.

mdlund0 6 years ago

You're right, let's. Because good businesses don't let their talent walk out the door and go to their competitors. They keep their employees happy by compensating them appropriately. If your impression of business is that they'll slash salaries to save a buck at the expense of their future, then you really have no clue what makes a good business.

parrothead8 6 years ago

We've been trying to do it that way for about 20 years now. How's it working for you?

thepianoman 6 years ago

LOL. Could not have said that better Shardwurm!!! Frankly, I find what BGL said a complete abomination. Who would have the nerve, after what our state and the country has endured financially the past few years, to make a statement like this? Just blows my mind. Greed, greed, greed.........

justoneperson 6 years ago

I'm not a faculty member at KU (or any other university in KS), but I do at least understand what this request/article is trying to get across.

Are professors happy to have jobs in a down market? Sure; I don't think anyone is saying they aren't.

What you don't seem to grasp is that quality faculty pull in quality grad students; your program moves up the rankings, and more students want to attend. Some grad students make decisions about where to go based on the faculty they'll get to work with while there.

So, in a down job market, the "top candidates" are still in demand and get the pick of the litter, so to speak. The university can bring in other people, or replace those that leave, but students go with them.

Say you have a faculty member who is at the top of their field, brings in a lot of external grant money, and attracts top-quality students. They get an offer elsewhere, and KU can't counter, they leave. Bye-bye grant money and students.

Now, you can hire someone else to teach the classes, but the results will not be the same, regardless of what you'd like to claim. Furthermore, when you can't attract students, each student will then bear a larger cost burden to make up the loss of revenue.

Shardwurm 6 years ago

You're making the poor assumption that most of the top-paid people on the staff actually teach.

That is not so. They 'research' to tell us ground-breaking things like flirting improves relationships.

Many of the lower level classes are taught by grad students who get paid $5,000 to do it despite the University charging the same rate as if a full professor is teaching it. It's a scam. Nothing more, nothing less. And they want more.

AnonymousBosch 6 years ago

First of all, the junior professor to whom you are referring is not among the top-paid people, and he is an excellent teacher. Whether or not his research is great is a matter of opinion, but he's excellent in the classroom.

The reason many of the lower level classes are taught by grad students is because the University doesn't have the money to hire real faculty to teach them. Also, those lower level courses only require a masters degree to certify a teacher as prepared and competent to teach them. Thus, the grad students teaching are often as qualified as the lecturers (who are "real faculty"). Additionally, the positions for grad students are where they get the experience to get a professorial position somewhere, so there is benefit to them. Is the system perfect that way? Of course not, but if you want professors teaching every class, prices are going to go up.

And the University demands that faculty produce research or they get fired (not tenured), so if you have a problem with the research, blame the administration requirements, not the faculty members. Some would enjoy just teaching, but that's not the job description.

Shardwurm 6 years ago

"The reason many of the lower level classes are taught by grad students is because the University doesn't have the money to hire real faculty to teach them."

Yet the Univer$ity charges full tuition for those classes. Explain that. Sounds like there is way too much fat in the system.

Sorry...your lame excuses for breaking the back of the middle class and sending our children into the world with mortgage-level debt doesn't fly.

If we were paying $75 a credit hour I could understand...but not only are we pushing $250 an hour we're pouring tax dollars to subsidize institutions who propagate the myth that the product they are delivering is worth what is paid for it.

If my son wanted a degree in Political Science and the $80K price tag that accompanies that would you recommend it? What do you suppose the payback would be? I'll tell you - NEVER. He'd be better off being 'Joe the Plumber' than getting a degree at Rip-Off U.

justoneperson 6 years ago

Top researchers bring in money, grant money. This grant money is used to pay for their research, as well as research assistants (i.e. students).

If an undergraduate major is approximately 120 hours, and I use the $250 per credit hour figure, that seems to total about $30k? In terms of state universities nationwide, KU is not considered overpriced.

Now, if I were to go to a university where I could pay 10k for a degree, then I would have a less-valuable degree; basically because there would not be enough money to recruit quality professors. In this market, it's hard for anyone to find a job, let alone those with degrees from the online, privatized universities.

When graduate students teach classes, they build their resume, and it becomes easier to place these people in jobs. A good job placement rate equals a higher departmental ranking, and higher quality students seeking out the department in the future. Furthermore, the students chosen to teach their own classes didn't just wonder into that, it took them succeeding in their coursework, and showing their quality as a teacher. As the above poster mentioned, lecturers (and professors at lower-level colleges) have Master's Degrees, and basically the same credentials as a grad student teaching assistant.

As for someone with a Political Science Degree, it's hard for everyone to find a job, but there are a lot of things one can do with this degree, even at an undergraduate level (given that it's viewed as the "new business degree", widely applicable).

But, clearly you have decided with whatever information you had prior.

PugnaciousJayhawk 6 years ago

The leader of Fort Hays has the goal of becoming the largest state university and to educate its students at a fraction of the cost - while maintaining its standards. The guy believes so much in what he's doing that he's signing contracts with parents promising to get their kids out in 4 years. It's going to be really interesting to watch the School develop over the next couple of years.

Scott Morgan 6 years ago

There's no such thing as a free lunch. Kansas need to pay or not play. Want good profs and teachers? Then pay, for other areas will see the long term benefits. Other areas will pay.

AnonymousBosch 6 years ago

If you put education into the hands of the private sector, hold on for prices to go WAAAAAY up. Also, education should not be handled "from a business perspective." "Businessmen" would only focus on whatever the hot thing is supposedly now - and prevent expansion into other areas that they didn't foresee becoming the "new hot thing" because they were too busy patting themselves on the backs. Plus, they'd probably want to cut all ethics classes, since they themselves have no use for ethics. What a shameful world that would be.

geekyhost 6 years ago

Except for the pesky part where private sector k-12 education fares no better and often fares worse than public sector education you might have a... naw, you don't actually have any points.

devobrun 6 years ago

In the long run, when the research proves fruitless, the peripatetic prof chooses a salary, then gets cut.

Schools who lure people with money get money grubbers. When the money dries up, they are gone. Why does the money dry up? Because professors who leap for a few more bucks are those who don't stay to build programs. They ride a wave of temporary stardom until the area of research is.....researched. Then they move on to more money, usually in industry.

Now, these new pontificates will find that private money is languishing on the sidelines. New hires will be required to show immediate results. This is rarely seen in former professors. They like to play games with philosophies, theoretical models, and other abstractions.

Show me the money, profs. Where are the patents and products? The economy will eventually hit the big U and the esoteric research.

They will be sucking wind. Nope, better to stay put with the place that put you on the map. Is a failing economy the right time to be over-liberal in your career?

AnonymousBosch 6 years ago

Many faculty are not money grubbers. Most genuinely enjoy their teaching and believe their research will benefit society in some way. And even the best faculty members who would be devoted to KU would find it hard to justify staying when administrative policies and funding situations make it impossible to get pay raises they deserve, funding to advance their research and reach the goals KU requires them to reach in research, etc. Also, new hires ARE required to show immediate results, and some don't have a fallback in industry.

devobrun 6 years ago

Funny, I didn't think I categorized all profs as money grubbers. Most do not genuinely enjoy teaching, however. One doesn't achieve membership in honor societies by doing a great job teaching Introduction to Social Psychology, with 600 students who are just filling up a requirement for graduation.

Any prof who wishes to advance in the department, the university, the professional society must recruit students for research. They teach to recruit.

Your definition of results is different than mine. Universities are looking for the next developer of the next big thing. There are three places within the University where big money can come around. Engineering, medicine, and pharma. KU has done pretty well in pharma, thanks to Higuchi and Stella. Medicine is not doing so well, and engineering has produced very little for years. Cresis is about the only million dollar research in engineering that I know of.

Profs who engage in big time programs like Cresis (out on west campus) don't get paid by the university. They get paid by an endowment, and contract. And they teach one class a year, as a recruitment tool.

Those profs who have no industrial fallback cannot bring in very much money to the university anyway. That is, if we're talking about English profs, who is raiding them?

yourworstnightmare 6 years ago

Jealous much, high school creationist teacher?

yourworstnightmare 6 years ago

The free market works in academics just as it does in business.

A better product costs more money, and the market will pay what that product can command.

Why do all of the right wing anti-education dolts suddenlt abandon free market principles when it comes to the universities?

Oh, that's right. They are filled with jealous anger that life didn't give them more. They likely never worked hard to achieve anything, and are now jealous and angry that they haven't been handed the rewards of a life of hard work and achievement.

devobrun 6 years ago

Tenure is not the free market.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 6 years ago

Neither is getting fired because you say something unpopular with someone with the power to get you fired.

devobrun 6 years ago

What about those KU profs who file law suits against their department head? I remember when the computer science had to be disbanded by the college of liberal arts because they could not get anybody in the department to be cooperative, or grownup. Couldn''t fire them. So they shut the whole department down and reformed it within electrical engineering. A few profs were invited to apply for the new job in engineering, but not many were hired.

Shutting down an entire department and reforming it elsewhere is a drastic move and took 10 years of lawsuits and counter lawsuits. It was a mess. All because there were about 4 profs who should have been sacked immediately, but couldn't.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 6 years ago

I had a housemate at the time who was completing his master's in CS. He was fairly amazed at some of the weirdness that was going on. I don't remember any of the names or specific issues, but my impression was that it was mostly internal departmental politics, which isn't uncommon on university campuses.

But, then again, it's not uncommon in any human institution, public or private.

oakfarm 6 years ago

Knowing more than handful of former KU faculty I can safely say that most left for better overall opportunities, not (just) pay. Better schools, better facilities, better leaders, better community. It might be interesting were the chancellor to be specific as to who left and why but, absent that, treat this as rhetoric or, as one provost once quipped: "Every year for the past thirty years faculty claim morale is at an all-time low."

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 6 years ago

I've known a number of faculty over the years who had (university) opportunities elsewhere, but chose to stay here precisely because they think Lawrence is a better place to live than the cities where the higher paid alternatives were.

That doesn't mean Lawrence is perfect, or the best college town in the country, but for many faculty members, once they get established here, they're not anxious to leave.

devobrun 6 years ago

bozo and I agree again. edjayhawk is wrong. Not because Lawrence is perfect, or "the best place to live".

People choose places to live on many criteria. So edjayhawk wants to live in what, Chicago, San Diego, Seattle? Move there. They aren't perfect either. Some people like this, some like that. If Larryville doesn't suit ya, leave.

This is a Midwestern college town. If you like it, great. If not, don't. But there ain't no paradise, ed.

bill_the_kat 6 years ago

This is not the time to bitch about getting more money:

  • 9.6% UE:

  • $ 1 Trillion in federal deficit. No end in sight.

  • The total value of student loans outstanding now greater than credit card debt: People are finally wising up to the eduction scam, which is the more the goverment puts into education, the higher tution, wages, etc goes.

  • Where are these schools that are increasing wages for professors?

devobrun 6 years ago

bill, that is what I meant in my entry above. All universities are feeling the crunch. Those that are extending their salary budget are going to feel the troublesome pinch of reduced income. Those who tighten the belt will survive. University budgets are going to tighten for quite some time. Until university profs start to produce research that yields industrial product, that economic malaise will continue.

There aren't any "technology" type businesses in the immediate outlook. There are no bubble industries out there that will hire millions. The economy is languishing because there is nothing new to do. It will hit the high powered profs as well.

We have been living on debt for long enough to have racked up quite a bill. I think that the economy will falter even more and universities will continue to feel the decrease in funding. All funding agencies will back off. Government, private industrial, and private foundations will take in less money and dish out less.

The argument that research should be the last thing cut has run its course. Research is producing no new products. The fundamental research of the past 50 years have produced a surprising dearth of engineering applications.

Now, if we could only harness the energy in neutrinos.........Or make a reliable product using chaos theory......

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 6 years ago

"The economy is languishing because there is nothing new to do."

We are where we are because of the economy based on (artificially) cheap energy derived from fossil fuels is no longer sustainable. And because capital has continually chased ever cheaper labor in search of ever higher profits, causing un- and underemployment in this and other industrialized countries. In an attempt to maintain the same standard of living with sinking wages and higher energy costs, we've resorted to going into ever greater debt, both to the Chinese, and the wealthiest of the wealthy who no longer pay taxes, but instead loan that money to the government to pay for the deficits they are in large part responsible for creating.

So there is plenty to do in terms of replacing that old, quickly failing economic model with a new one based on energy efficiency, sustainable alternative energy sources, and markets that are locally and regionally based, not global.

What the future looks like depends on the ability of the human race to abandon the current model in favor of one that's sustainable.

Brian Laird 6 years ago

What an incredibly myopic, parochial and incorrect viewpoint; fundamental research over the last few decades has had an enormous impact on new products. Here are just a few...

  • fundamental advances in analytical, medicinal and pharmaceutical chemistry have led to a large number of new and more effective pharmaceuticals and detection assays. Current research on nano- and micro fluidics is leading the development of lab-on-a-chip devices for chemical analysis...
  • mapping the genome -chemistry: fundamental research in inorganic chemistry has led to more effective industrial catalytic processes.
  • advances in solid-state physics, such as giant magnetoresistance and conducting polymers, have led to more efficient consumer electronics -the results of chaos theory (your specific example) and non-linear dynamics in general have been extremely useful in a number of applications- for example in the design of random number generators, sensors for epilepsy, encryption, etc...

Thinking_Out_Loud 6 years ago

Oh, there you go again, boltzmann. I don't think you understand the implications of your post. I mean, think about it: if everyone posted based on facts and reason, what on earth would we do for hyperbole and rhetoric?

Oh. Perhaps I just answered my own question.

Brian Laird 6 years ago

Oh well, I guess we'll just have to go back to the pile...

sad_lawrencian 6 years ago

The only people the universities can blame for the brain drain is themselves. So KU and KState, take a look in the mirror. In the end, you alone are responsible for your own personnel issues. Not the state government!

IraMeanwell 6 years ago

Wow, my head is spinning like Linda Blair ... OK, help me out. And really I am asking for help from administration at one of our state schools or the board of regents. What measurement are you using to designate "outstanding faculty" that is being raided by schools able to dangle larger carrots?

IraMeanwell 6 years ago

A couple of thoughts while I am waiting for a university or regents official to respond to my cry for help.

In major league baseball this season, the top five team payrolls belonged to the New York Yankees ($206,333,389), the Boston Red Sox ($162,747,333), the Chicago Cubs ($146,859,000), the Philadelphia Phillies ($141,859,000), and the New York Mets ($132,701,445).

Oh, and none of these teams won the World Series. In fact, none of them made it to the Series.

The winner was San Francisco with a total payroll of $97,828,833 and the runner-up club, the Texas Rangers, spent just $55,250,545 to buy their staff of high-achievers.

My point of the example? High salaries does not a World Champion, or perhaps a great professor, make.

The other thought, and I will refuse to even think about college athletics today, concerns endowments. Why don't we include endowment totals, like say, a billion dollars stuffed away, when we cry about needing more funds from taxpayers?

My last thoughts for the evening. Maybe we should throw some new ideas out on the table, like abolishing the regents, the department of education, letting some state schools go private, restructuring the entire regents system (universities, community colleges, and technical schools), cleaning up redundancy, or pro-rating state support to universities based on need (some schools receive so much from private sources, while other schools receive little and thus need more state money). I am not endorsing any of these ideas this evening, just saying we need to have a legitimate debate on how to fix these problems without playing politics or trying to shout each other down with nasty comments.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 6 years ago

That's interesting. But mostly meaningless in this context.

The ability to pay high salaries definitely increases the level of success for baseball teams. The combined records of the teams you listed were well above .500.

But as big a determiner for success is just plain luck. Whether it's lucky bounces at opportune moments in close games, or just not getting lots of injuries to key players.

blogme 6 years ago

What a load of crap. These university presidents are whining because now the universities are facing the same thing the private sector deals with daily in that the only way to get a significant pay raise once you start working your way up the ladder with a company is to seek other employment, or at least the threat of other employment. Most private companies ( unless they are really, really small and not overrun by company policy yet ) have mechanisms in place that limit how much of a pay raise you can get yearly. If you want more money than their systems will let you have, negotiate it on your next job as that's the only way to get around it. Sad thing is, some university presidents apparently don't understand how things work in the real world. Little wonder why we have the obtuse leaders in academia that we do have. I'm sure another tax raise will solve ALL the issues. HA!

MyName 6 years ago

Except that it isn't the same thing that private companies have to deal with. Salaries are set by state law. School tuition has to go through a number of bureaucratic hoops, all salary data is a matter of public record, etc. Meanwhile, many private sector companies are paying their executives a record amount of money and chucking their low level employees and outsourcing to India or China.

You can't outsource Professors and if you want to talk about the "real world" why don't you explain why the average CEO makes 262 times what the average worker does? Do you want our state Universities to be run like that?

Steve Bunch 6 years ago

Like it or not, higher education has become a commodity and much of the market will be driven by price, convenience, and customer service. Universities have to decide what they want to be--purveyors of a commodity, hustling in the marketplace, or institutions of higher learning and research, not driven by market conditions. The latter will not compete on price but rather on quality and reputation. People who see higher education as nothing more than a qualification to get a job will spend their tuition with the institutions in the commodity market. KU has not decided what kind of university it wants to be but rather seems to want to be all things. It's hard, if not impossible, to develop a "business plan" for that model.

MyName 6 years ago

Right, and I'm sure the fact that the State budget was balanced on the backs of Higher Ed. which only receives 28% of its funding from State appropriations and isn't even allowed to set salaries on it's own is unimportant? I could understand the "greed" reply if the Chancellor was actually going to see any of this hypothetical budget, but that ain't the case.

Bottom line: we can cut the highway budget and have them defer projects for awhile, but eventually you have to put the money back into the roads or they fall apart. It's no different for buildings, or the salaries of people who work for you.

somedude20 6 years ago

if I were a student and was paying (or my partents were paying) $60,000 for an education, I would not want White Owl or the peace dude to be my profs. I might, and I say might, take the maraca lady if they would lower tuition

sfbinms 6 years ago

Kansas will get the sort of higher education it deserves.

Based upon many of these comments, I would be tempted to send my children to college in Louisiana, were the authors of the remarks actually guiding higher education in the state. Fortunately, these folks run nothing other than their mouths.

Kansas has been guided for many years by people much wiser than those who spend all their time on message boards whining over issues about which they have no clue. That will continue.

Alceste 6 years ago

Publically funded education is important. However, priorities have to be established and until Kansas gets K-12 right.....put the "higher education" on the back burner. They'll take care of themselves.

It is an interesting, annoying, and disturbing statistic when we as state confront the reality that the percentage of students performing at the Advanced Level in Math Proficiency in Kansas rests at 5.2%. The children in Latvia do better at 5.3%!! The children in Poland come in at 8.5%!! The children in the Czech Republic come in at 15.7%!!

Nope.....we don't need any stinkin' badges up on Ku's Snob Hill.

Read the report yourself:

PS: I'll bet our Kansas kids know how to drive a car better! hahahahahahahahahahhaahah

Adrienne Sanders 6 years ago

You all are forgetting that they're also talking about STAFF, who are not nearly as well paid as many of the faculty, and who haven't gotten any kind of raise in years. Do you really think that all the people who do the day-to-day work at the U. are overpaid jerks who don't even deserve to keep up with the cost of living?

ResQd 6 years ago

I've been looking at the employment job boards at KU recently, and you should go into the technology field. What they are paying those folks up there, is ridiculous!

Alceste 6 years ago

Staff are paid better than state of Kansas Civil Servants. KU staff insisted on divesting themselves from state of Kansas Civil Service and ever since so doing get far more in the way of a paycheck; benefits, perks, and ease of lifestyle than the person doing the exact same job/work....but in a state Agency. No Whaaaa.....cry baby non-sense from KU "staff" please. (Many of them spend all day on this internet message board chatting away....using STATE funded resources (the access to the internet); with STATE funded equipment (the computer they use); and doing so on state paid time!!! Incredible!!

Adrienne Sanders 6 years ago

Some of the staff are indeed state of Kansas employees, not KU employees.

Alceste 6 years ago

If they are state of Kansas employess....than they are subject and controlled by the State's pay plan and it makes no difference what KU staff get "extra". However, I rather doubt if they are actually "KU STAFF" that they are "mere" state of Kansas employees...... KU Staff divested from state of Kansas Civil Service several years ago, as I already noted.

Thinking_Out_Loud 6 years ago

Since KU is a State of Kansas institution, all staff are, by definition, State of Kansas employees.

MyName 6 years ago

And I'm sure no one ever does that thing on company time at any place in America? The problem isn't that KU staff are overcompensated, it's that State of Kansas employees haven't gotten a raise of any sort for years, and their pay has been lagging for decades. And since only 28% of KU's budget actually comes from the State, I'd say they have a pretty good case for leaving the "system".

Alceste 6 years ago

Yes, but we're not discussing "...any place in America....", are we? We're discussing a collective group of spoiled, cry baby children who just don't know how good they've got it. Too, I do NOT want MY tax money spent on kiddies (even if they've been there 20+ years) using STATE time AND resources to "chat" on some silly message board. If they have to work so hard let me suggest they wouldn't have time to be opining at, or anywhere else; they'd be perspiring from working so hard. We all know "they" do not..." so hard..."; got it GOOD (and how) and that is why they CHOOSE to remain employed by the University (!) of Kansas under such onerous conditions.....yeah....right....."oneroous"....more like extra touchy feely niceey.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 6 years ago

What (or who) the hell are you talking about?

Alceste 6 years ago

Also, KU "Staff" have shown no concern whatsoever for State Civil Servants; haven't lifted one little pinky finger in a show of "solidarity" for state Civil Servants who have been regularly getting the shaft for well over 10, 20 years now. KU Staff just don't get how good they got it.....wait....they do!! That's why they stay employed with such a crummy outfit and annually complain about horrible it is!! hahahahahahahaahhaa

emu 6 years ago

We're talking about the sideline business of a gazillion-dollar pro sports business that also runs an educational establishment to help justify its taxpayer subsidies. Judging by articles in the same edition of the Journal-World, the KU sports business is an enterprise run by gangsters. Interesting that nobody seems worried about how much these sports clowns are paid, or how their racket became notorious for flaky finance. (Calling it flaky is being generous. It's officially become a criminal enterprise, according to these new reports.)

Sorry, I forgot: In Kansas, college sports are almost a religion and beyond reproach.

MyName 6 years ago


Size of KU Endowment: $1.3 Billion Net assets of KU Athletic Corp: $100 Million

Yes, clearly the University is just a "sideline" for the Athletic corporation...

Alceste 6 years ago

I was HOPING I wasn't alone in utilizing a singular term for KU "staff". MORONS captures it better than my own singular term. Thanks! for sharing.....

Steve Bunch 6 years ago

I should have been clearer. I was referring to the posters in this thread, who may or may not be KU employees.

remember_username 6 years ago

Actually, it would take more than money at this point for Kansas institutions to retain the many of the most qualified faculty and staff. For similar compensation one can find a better quality of student, better quality of living, and a more intellectually compatible community elsewhere.

wager 6 years ago

It looks like the only schools crying about money are the ones paying the 2 or 3 million dollar salaries to the football and basketball coach. How about these colleges get out of the sports business and let the NFL and NBA pay for their own farm teams and let the colleges do what there supposed to do and educate. Maybe KU could save some money by calling Magino and Perkins back to work since they are still on the payroll!!!

Godot 6 years ago

Question is, what institution of learning would consider hiring tenured faculty from a university that has been in decline for so long? The only reason we have to keep them on is tenure. Let them go, it will probably help KU.

booyalab 6 years ago

KU is a good microcosm for government. They complain about not having enough money for essential services, then when they get it they turn around and dump tens of millions into a new logo or a sports sanctuary.

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