Students propose higher tuition, faculty raises

6/10/2013, at the University of Washington:

Students on the advisory committee, along with student-government leaders, said if lawmakers won’t give more state dollars to higher education, students would support a 3 percent tuition increase for in-state undergraduates — or about $322 — in 2013-14, and another 3 percent increase the next year. Total tuition and fees are currently about $12,400.   

A tuition increase of 3 percent could pay for a 2 percent raise for faculty and staff in the next school year and a second 2 percent the following year.   

Administrators affirmed the importance of the faculty salary issue. “Our No. 1 concern is compensation. After four years, we really are at the risk of losing some talented people,” said UW budget director Paul Jenny.  

UW administrators admit that low pay is a problem for retention. Here at UO, VPAA Doug Blandy regularly denies that faculty are leaving UO over low pay, despite the fact that a full professor at UW is paid about 12% more than at UO. UO pay actually fell last year for assistant and associate professors. More data here.

Student frustrations with Gottfredson grow

6/8/2013: Powerful Op-Ed from UO undergrad Joe Jacklin in the RG on the investiture demonstration:

This was not some haphazard show of frustration where we all celebrated the fact that we’d caused a disruption. As reported in Diane Deitz’s May 31 article, we went so far as to apologize to Gottfredson for having to interrupt his ceremony during the microphone check. 

The fact is that it was one of the few times when we were even sure of where the president was going to be. Gottfredson has repeatedly ducked or avoided our groups’ requests for meetings. He has canceled scheduled meetings with campus workers after people had already shown up. 

To anyone who is familiar with our new president, none of this should come as a surprise. 

Not only has Gottfredson abandoned the interests of the students in proposing the tuition hike while raising administration salaries, but he has also abandoned the faculty of our beloved university (specifically sharing governance with them, and particularly on academic matters).

Jacklin’s LESST group’s website has more. Gottfredson’s public records office, which charged me $108 to see 6 months of his official calendar, is now trying to charge the students $240 for the most recent 5 months. Last I heard they were still trying to scrounge up the money. And the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education is reportedly questioning the efforts of Assistant Dean of Students Chicora Martin to move the demonstrators from Knight Court to some sort of unconstitutional “free speech zone”.

Meanwhile Gottfredon’s new chief of staff Greg Rikhoff still won’t say who is on Gottfredson’s “Budget Advisory Group”, much less produce copies of their charge or minutes. It’s been almost 3 weeks Greg. Update: Rikhoff just sent me the list of members, but not the committee’s charge. I’ve got a request in to Moffitt and Shelton, who co-chair it, for that and the minutes.

The Rudnick/Gottfredson plan to drive a wedge

between the students and the faculty union on tuition increases seems to have failed.

6/3/2013 update: Here’s the mic check video, from a helpful commenter. The guy in the middle is Frog, or maybe Bean, after an administrative sabbatical paid for with student tuition increases. Say, what is Bean going to teach next year?

5/31/2013. The ODE reports from the investiture:

Another concern that [UO Student Jeremy Hedlund] mentioned was that UO faculty members are one of the lowest paid university members in the American Association of Universities, with some of the faculty not even getting a raise in pay since 2008. 

“The money that they’ve been charging us has clearly not been going to the faculty members,” Hedlund said. 

No shit. The total wage bill for bargaining unit faculty is about $96M. UO’s tuition revenue increased $29M last year. Average salaries for assistant and associate professors *fell*.

The RG reports on what seems to have been a remarkably respectful protest:

During Thursday’s ceremony, about 50 students gathered on the arena steps to protest tuition hikes for next school year. Fifteen went inside and briefly disrupted the ceremony, asking Gottfredson to freeze tuition; meet with students; and be a leader, “not a bureaucrat pushing Phil Knight’s agenda.” The students said Gottfredson had turned down their requests for face-to-face meetings three times. 

The students then apologized for disrupting the ceremony before a campus policeman walked along with them as they left the building.

I like that apology. “Sorry. But how did you expect us to react to being ignored?”

Gottfredson rejects bottled water ban

11/19/2012 video from camera 4 in our Johnson Hall surveillance system:

I’m no environmental economist, but I think a pigouvian tax on the bottles (like the EMU does with coffee cups) would be the efficient solution. But a ban seems like good second best policy. For reasons I don’t understand Gottfredson has rejected it – presumably someone has the contract to sell this stuff on campus? Letter from the students:

Full letter here. Maybe the Climate Justice League will turn its attention to the Gabon greenwashing deal next.