… in the Minneapolis Star Tribune notes that the most charitable description of what’s been going on at the clubby University of Minnesota medical school would be “bizarre.”
Sunday, November 23, 2008
From today's NYT:
Presidents Give Back Some Pay
In the week since The Chronicle of Higher Education published its annual survey of university presidents’ pay — a week in which the nation’s economic troubles worsened — several of the highest-paid presidents said that they would give back part of their pay or forgo their raises.
Pat Callan, president of the National Center for Public Policy and Higher Education, said he had never heard of such a wave of givebacks.
“When you see a cluster like this,” he said, “it seems like sort of belated recognition that this presidential pay thing has gotten out of hand. People are getting tuition increases, some faculty are facing layoffs, it just doesn’t look too good for presidents, no matter how capable they are, to be getting so much money. Americans have had a touching faith in higher education; it’s losing its good image with the public.”The chancellor of Washington University in St. Louis, Mark S. Wrighton, announced on Thursday that he would take a 5 percent cut from his base salary on Jan. 1 and another 5 percent reduction on July 1.
Mr. Wrighton, who announced his decision in an e-mail message to the university community, also pointed out that the university’s endowment had declined about 25 percent since July 1, that some capital projects were being delayed and that faculty salary increases would be lower than in past years.
“This was well under way before The Chronicle came out,” Mr. Wrighton said. “I’m generously compensated, I know that. We’re in very difficult financial times. I’m in a position that is not at risk, but the rest of the university community, especially in administration and support, must be wondering if their jobs are secure. I wanted to let the community know that I’m sensitive to the situation.”
The president of Washington State University, Elson S. Floyd, who made $600,000 in his first year at the university and received a $125,000 raise over the summer, said he would take a voluntary $100,000 pay cut in response to budget problems.