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Should KU professors get free or reduced tuition for their children and spouses?

Asked at Lawrence Antique Mall, 830 Mass. on November 28, 2004

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Photo of Larry Billings

“If it is written into the benefit package, then yes. If not, they shouldn’t receive any special treatment.”

Photo of Elaine Gordon

“Certainly, it’s a tradition. They should receive the same benefits as professors at other universities.”

Photo of Brooks Hanson

“I think they should have to pay like everybody else. There shouldn’t be any nepotism at the university.”

Photo of Kathy Mason

“Only if the rest of the staff gets the same opportunity.”


gyroduck 13 years, 7 months ago

Professors should never have children.

Savage 13 years, 7 months ago

thats cool...I guess I just like the debate too much.

mrcairo 13 years, 7 months ago

It's a nice incentive to retain good professors.

Hong_Kong_Phooey 13 years, 7 months ago

The Professors at the University get so many benefits as it is. I think the only way that the children and spouses of professors should get free or 'reduced rate' tuition, is if ALL the employees of the University get it. Try paying for college as an employee at the Parking Department, or the Landscaping department. It's not quite as easy as a professor making $100,000/yr.

Hi_Jinks 13 years, 7 months ago

My gut reaction to this question is to say, "No! Why should they?"

But the more I think about it, the more I realize that there are plenty of universities across this great land of ours that offer free or greatly reduced tuition to prospective employees and their family members---and that's been the case for years and years!

So.....Why should KU be any different, right?

Hi_Jinks 13 years, 7 months ago

..............However, if you're strictly talking about professors (as opposed to administration types)........

Well, then.........I can see why an idea such as this would make some people scratch their heads. I mean, if someone like a college professor (with his or her salary such that it is) can't afford to send his or her kid to college without some sort of financial help......well, then.....I guess their isn't any hope for the rest of us mere mortals!!

JHAWKGURL 13 years, 7 months ago

I totally agree with Hong nailed it right on my friend! Someone making only $26,000 a year could not EVEN begin to pay for their child to go to school!! If the professors get free tuition for their children so should every single employee employed by the University including janitorial, landscaping, and parking...etc!

U2freak 13 years, 7 months ago

I went through some pretty ridiculous bureaucratic processes at Strong Hall and was in contact with some administors there. I found out that KU is not a student-friendly university, that's why I transfered to another university in the East Coast. Please don't get me wrong though there are some excellent professors there, my point is that the administation at KU cares most about their academic ranking than anything else, so they always side professors' benefits.

lori 13 years, 7 months ago

Do you realize that many of the professors make significantly less than 100K a year? I can't imagine that salaries have risen much in the last decade; in the 90s, many in the language/liberal arts departments made in the high 20s and low 30s.

FWIW, I agree, though, that if such a policy is instituted, the benefit should be extended to all full time employees of the university, not just professors and administrators.

Liberty 13 years, 7 months ago

Since KU is funded by the people that live in this state, the people in this state should be the ones who have a greatly reduced rate or free and sure admission. Everyone else outside of the state should pay the higher rates and have to qualify. KU should not be allowed to shun Kansas resident students or charge them outrageous rates that they presently have.

alczervik 13 years, 7 months ago

My father was on the janitorial staff at a small, private liberal arts college elsewhere in Kansas. I attended this school during my freshman year, and as a result of my father's employment I was given free tuition. At this school (where the tuition was significantly higher) every employee was extended this benefit. I realize the state has problems with its budget, and this means stingier treatment of the university financing process. However, if a struggling little private school can provide this service for its employees, are you telling me that a behemoth like KU can't do the same? This university (and by extension the state of Kansas) treats its average, work a day employees with very little regard in my opinion.

Hi_Jinks 13 years, 7 months ago

alczervik......I think you made a good point in your last post.

If a KU groundskeeper guy is making only 10 bucks an hour---but he gets a few perks like being able to send himself or his kids to KU at a greatly reduced tuition rate, then I don't think 99% of the general population has a problem with that idea.

But there are those who find it difficult to imagine and/or accept the idea of a KU professor sending his or her kid to KU for free. Because let's face it.....I think most professors certainly make just a little bit more than 10 bucks an hour!! Yes?

Richard Heckler 13 years, 7 months ago

Absolutely. Free for all staff or at least a 75% reduced rate.

Savage 13 years, 7 months ago

Where are all you people who cry...the poor teachers today? They dont make that much money! (at least most of the them right?)

I say lets go with a 75% tuition reduction benefit minimally while teaching here for their families.

For those who disagree...quit whining or go teach yourself.

Savage 13 years, 7 months ago

Dear Jane,


So what your essentially saying is that most Harvard Grads are bums then. Since when did they (most students there) start paying for their own edu?

Thanks Mom and Dad!

Most comments like yours seem to be geared towards "class envy" more than anything else.

Its called keeping it in the family.

So whats wrong with that?

Perhaps Darwin wasnt so wrong about the survival of the fittest comment after all.

Thats why the Rich (often) stay rich!


PigFarmer 13 years, 7 months ago

This is not fair to the employees who really keep KU running. Just another example of screwing the person at the low end who really needs the help. I think it would be better to help all KU employees and not single out the highest paid for the benefits they can afford without the benefits.

Savage 13 years, 7 months ago

PigFarmer...I can agree with that. There should be some benifit for all employees. Last I was told by some janitor working up there was that he received a 50 percent tuition reduction already after 90 days of starting his job on campus....along with his health insurance too.

so, perhaps they are doing something for everyone.

PigFarmer 13 years, 7 months ago

Savage that sounds like a good plan for the janitor, but I wonder if it is as good as for a professor? Regardless it is much better than nothing and is a step in the right direction.

I hope they require all supplemented tuiton be monitored to insure student makes some level of passing grade and completes the classes. The state use to pay for all the classes that were job related, but you had to get a B in order to take another class.

bigcat 13 years, 7 months ago

The point that a lot of you are missing is a large portion of your money for school is not the tuition, it is the room and board and fees. Many schools do give the staff free tution, but not room and board and fees. Really not a huge amount of money in the whole scheme of things in college. Professors are tough to hire in many departments, as are high school or grade school teachers. Any incentive package that a college can give that really doesn't cost them much or truly in this case anything accept a little extra added bonus to hire good professors.

alczervik 13 years, 7 months ago

Two points on your post, bigcat: 1. If this option is so low cost, then why is it not also extended to other empolyees?

  1. The room and board issue is really a red herring. The children of the employees who could attend school for free would be local kids who could live at home while attending school. If they wanted to live in the dorms, then they could take out loans to do that if necessary. The education is the issue. Where a person lives while getting this education is really beside the point.

jamestcastle 9 years, 6 months ago

Lets be logical about this question.In a standard business, everyone knows the manager gets benefits such as health care, retirement, etc. The hourly employee typically gets some odd percentage discount on food or products in the store--possibly a free uniform. The manager EARNED his position, either by working through the ranks or educating himself.KU should be no different. The staff should get benefits, but professors and assistant/associate professors should get more because THEY earned more via intense years of study and research.

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