President Michael Schill has been very, very good to his upper admins. Faculty & staff, not so much.

Relative to other “Very High Research” public universities. I think this is what is commonly called “administrative bloat” – though these are salaries, not numbers. 2018 means the 2018-19 FY.

From the Chronicle of Higher Education, here. (You may need to create a free login with your UO id). The data comes from federally required IPEDS data submissions. UO is in orange, the 4-year VHR public university average in teal:

Admin: Upper management salaries:

Admin: Comm/Legal/Media salaries:

Faculty: (Full profs.)

Faculty: (Asst Profs):

Librarians:

Regular OA’s:

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47 Responses to President Michael Schill has been very, very good to his upper admins. Faculty & staff, not so much.

  1. HonestNauman says:

    I’m interested in relevant comparisons. That is, ROI based on quality of student (GPA/SAT) and degree/field of study which likely ties to career earnings potential. Comparing similar quality of student for Social Work vs. Engineering will obviously yield much different 20 year net ROI – and would also be a completely useless comparison. I’d argue that all general comparisons are similarly of little value.

    But when you get to specific degrees/majors, then we have apples to apples (assuming similar quality of student). So, comparing the 20 year Net ROI on an Engineering Degree: OIT is $715K vs. OSU is $786K, though incoming students SAT scores are slightly higher for OSU.

    Btw, for OIT only 47% of first-time enrolled students graduate w/in 6 years vs. 63% grad rate for OSU. So what does that say to a prospective high school graduate (and their parents)? Also, the http://www.oit.edu/news/2019/08/20/Oregon-tech-ranks-at-top-1-in-nation yields “Page Not Found” on oit.edu site.

    For Computer Science & Math OU has better 20 yr net ROI than OIT but worse than OSU.

    For Economics, Psychology and Humanities OU has better 20 yr net ROI than OSU.

    Of course, these tools are probably not much different than the beauty pageants that are the US News & World Report College Rankings, among others. They are great for marketing!

    all per PayScale.com

    • charlie says:

      Not sure where you’re getting your Payscale numbers, but these are the ones I have for 2018:

      20 year ROI

      OIT in state $572,000
      out of state $509,000

      OSU in state $408,000
      out of state $338,000

      UO in state $294,000
      No out of state numbers

      Please advise us where you’re getting your numbers.

      And it’s hardly a useless argument. If I’m a hs kid, and their loan co-signing parent, I no longer have the capacity not to see a college education as anything more that trade school. The flagship is a liberal arts college, whereas both OSU and OIT took different tracks. Nothing wrong with any of that. But outcomes and student marketability after graduation will vary, and if you have a rigourous STEM degree, it’s probably a lot easier to land a job than someone with one in the liberal arts. I’m not saying anyone is any less educated because they make less money. Quite the opposite. But that’s not the question. Which uni provides me with the best chance to pay off my debt? It’s doesn’t seem liberal arts unis are the place to go.

      As for the 47% of freshmen that graduate, meh, STEM has always had a high wash out rate. How many aspiring freshmen pre-med majors end finishing up in that field? Not anywhere the number that started. So, create a school that focuses on majors that have higher than average washout rates, and it’s not really a surprise that most students don’t make it to the end…

  2. Fishwrapper says:

    Headline from today’s Chronicle is a subtle one. University Leaders Are Failing: The pandemic reveals ineptitude at the top.

    If a president and his leadership team have one principal responsibility, it is to ensure that the university is on sound enough financial footing to weather unanticipated crises. Ours have not.

    Full article.

    • Dog says:

      Personally I am curious how many Universities might “raid endowments” to heal ease them through the current financial upheaval. After-all, your endowment doesn’t do you much good if this unanticipated crises causes your University to fold (or get baled out by your state ….)

    • Environmental necessity says:

      One reason is that the incentive structure offers failure upwards. Others pay the price for admin ineptitude: Failure to plan and anticipate and ensure sound financial footing provides advancement and promotion opportunities to those same administrators. They oversee the “remedies” to their failures in the form of imposing pay cuts while their salaries are relatively insulated because “lifestyle”, also known as “we are all in this together”.

  3. Bee says:

    Schill has proven to be a true corporate man. This data is a disgrace and I hope that any negotiated salary reductions make sure that the coaches and the admin take a proportionately larger cut before faculty and staff.

  4. Bee says:

    When given opportunities to retain fulls, or to address inequities among fulls as a result of successful retentions, the UO Admin is half-assed, obviously playing favorites with who they deem worthy of retentions and who not. Many of those retentions involve sweet promotions to Admin. This is something our union could do more to correct in the future – some departmental equity $ as part of successful retentions.

  5. Robert says:

    I’m classified and if I started at my bottom now compared to my bottom step in 2006 we’ve taken a 21% pay cut

  6. dtl says:

    Do the admin $ include: car $, house/utilities paid for them (UO Pres), $ value of the many other perks (tickets to sporting events, plane tickets, hotels, dining, etc)?

  7. Bitter OPSRP says:

    These admin pay data leave out the extra amounts Brad and Lorraine get from PERS. $189,154 for Brad, $174,763 for Lorraine. The Oregonian has published the latest data at https://gov.oregonlive.com/pers/

  8. thedude says:

    Like it or not, we have settled on a bargaining relationship. Other universities have monopsony power too. We have a union to offset that. Has the union done so? On next, I’d say no.

    It has done a lot to secure better more secure contracts for NTTFs. But why hasn’t it closed to the full professor gap?

    I suggest the lack of closing the gap reveals 1-5 most play a role some how.

    1. Our university generally does not do enough to retain faculty when they get outside offers
    2. Our university generally is not generous enough with full professor raises
    3. There’s not enough $s for closing external equity, or merit, or ATB or all 3.
    4. The UO’s standing has fallen resulting in less $s for raises, so less pi to negotiate over
    5. The full profs are deadwood and the asts or associates got all the raises.

    We can rule out 5 based on figure above. 4 Suggests the admins don’t deserve their $s.

  9. thedude says:

    Embarassing for Schill, or the union.

    Given we have apparently gone to an equilibrium of bargaining, isn’t it up to the union to negotiate for our salaries and do better than average to offset university monopsony power? If they can’t do better than our peers who have monopsonies but no union what are they doing?

    My realistic take, other universities

    1. Do more to retain faculty
    2. Hire more full professors
    3. Offer more generous bumps at full professors (I’ve heard closer to 15% bumps at full at other AAU publics).

    • Dog says:

      yes there is no question that a large, corrective bump on promotion to Full Professor would alleviate the basic problem, but such an action would likely not be approved by the Union.

      It is also unclear what the effect of the 6% TRP bump is in the
      form of the data; I suspect that is going away as the Union will finally figure out that such a “raise” is showing preferential treatment to certain people in the Union. Certainly without that 6% bump, the gap would be larger still for Full Professors.

      • uomatters says:

        Fact-check: In every bargaining cycle, the union has fought to maintain the current promotion and post-tenure raises, over opposition from the administration. In fact, we were able to keep them – as the only raises – in the recent 1-year CBA extension.

        • Dog says:

          not talking about those raises, which I am agreement with.

          Am talking about the TRP raise you get automatically (long before the Union) when you signed up for TRP and get a 6% raise for your last 3 full time years.

          Now I do believe that the Union actually negotiated larger Post Tenure raises but that bump is not really seen in the data;
          the CAS raise increase when attaining full prof status occurred in 2004 I believe; again hard to see in the data

          • uomatters says:

            The figure shows changes in average salary for a professor, not changes in salary for an average professor moving through the ranks etc.

          • old timer says:

            dog is right on the initiation of percentage promotion raises by CAS in 2004.

      • Bee says:

        How do you make such flawed and false assertions Dog? We would not have PTR raises for full professors if it were not for our union. How about getting in the trenches a while and show some leadership through our union?

    • Environmental necessity says:

      Duke is: 1) suspending employer pension payments for one-year to avoid salary cuts; 2) every employee earning more than $285,000 per year is taking a 10% cut (because Duke’s salaries are higher across the board, that threshold would start lower here); and 3) the highest-ranking employees – President (20%) and the Provosts, EVP, and Chancellor (15%) – are volunteering larger cuts. Faculty are losing that pension contribution for one year, but no salary cuts, no appreciable layoffs.

      Meanwhile, at Oregon, they hold the Sword of Damocles over our most vulnerable faculty, cut their pay up to 50% and are seeking additional salary cuts from faculty across the board.

      I fully recognize their student profile and endowment pictures are different, but it does speak to the differences in priority.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Embarrassing for Schill. Any way to tell which are new positions and which are inflated salaries from previous presidents? Completely explains the proposed 200k cutoff for the proposed top bracket in the inevitable paycuts that are coming.

  11. A. Smith says:

    Thanks for these data. I never would have guessed that cronyism, brown-nosing, and expensive search firms could increase salaries more than free markets or unions.

  12. Eternal Skeptic says:

    “But we have to recruit and retain the best people”

  13. Reviewer 2 says:

    You selected “4-year public” for professors. If you choose “Research (highest”) like you did for every other category, there’s about a $30k gap between Oregon’s full professors and the average.

    • uomatters says:

      Thanks, revised and resubmitted. I also added Asst’s, on advice of Reviewer 1.

    • Dog says:

      Yes I was going to point this out – now the correct data make it quite clear that us Full professors basically have not gained any ground, pre-or post Union which sends the obvious message that
      we are not going to gain any ground, in fact, in the short term, I see us moving backwards.

  14. Thomas Hager says:

    Management salaries up 60% in six years? Holy crap.

    • uomatters says:

      But just at UO. At other public research universities they’re flat, in real inflation adjusted dollars.

  15. Hippo says:

    In my inbox this morning was some SPAM from a recruiter which included this position

    https://careers.uoregon.edu/en-us/job/525254/assistant-director-for-financial-wellness

    So we just reduced the FTE of librarians but we want to hire a 200k “Director for Financial Wellness”? I thought we had a hiring freeze.

    • uomatters says:

      Yeah, it might have been better if they’d made the job title “Assistant Director for *Student* Financial Wellness”, which is what this seems to be about:
      .
      Department Summary
      .
      The primary mission of the Office of Student Financial Aid and Scholarships at the University of Oregon is to help students achieve their educational goals by reducing financial barriers to attend the University of Oregon. This mission is carried out in an environment that places high priority on student-centered service as well as meeting University enrollment goals. We provide information about financial assistance and scholarships to a diverse group of students and families, determine financial aid eligibility and award program funds to applicants in accordance with all applicable policies and rules, while advocating for students regarding financial aid issues at the institutional, state, and federal levels.
      .
      This would make maximum pay about $70K. For reference for OA pay see:

      https://hr.uoregon.edu/recruitment/classification-compensation/officers-administration-oas/compensation-structure/oa
      .
      For Exec Administrators:
      https://hr.uoregon.edu/recruitment/classification-compensation/officers-administration-oas/compensation-structure/executive
      .
      For Duck coaches:
      https://hr.uoregon.edu/recruitment/classification-compensation/officers-administration-oas/compensation-structure/oa-coach
      .
      Also, out of respect for my mother and other librarians past and present, I’ve added their salaries to the post.

      • Hippo says:

        Yes, good point, perhaps it is worthwhile to hire someone to tell students that going into debt for a UO education makes is a financially sensible decision.

        And this evening, the same recruiter (I guess he or she doesn’t have a very good ML algorithm for figuring out what jobs I might be a good candidate for. Doesn’t matter, I suppose, email is free) sent me this ad:

        https://careers.uoregon.edu/en-us/job/524402/assistant-associate-professor-of-bioengineering

        OPEN FOR BUSINESS at the Knight Campus. Will they have librarians?

        • charlie says:

          No one needs another admin functionary to persuade students that taking on unmitigatable debt for a degree is a good thing. K-12 satraps have done that for decades.

          Maybe the job description should be to keep increasingly enraged students, and their loan co-signing parents, from suing unis for charging full freight, and delivering half the load….

        • A realistic parent says:

          Going into debt for a UO education? Me thinks OSU is a better choice financially and educationally. Sorry Duckies but the quality of a UO education has dropped too low too fast to be a good value for money….

          • uomatters says:

            Go find the data, Troll.

            • A realistic parent says:

              Try http://www.collegeresults.org/search1b.aspx?institutionid=209551 for starters and compare with OSU. Or for a bigger shock, compare UO with similar colleges. Actual comparators include Towson, West Chester of PA and Western Washington Universities. Compared to the PAC-12 schools, UO is in the bottom quartile. UO used to be an excellent value. Now not so much. Party/sports school. Sad but true.

              • Environmental necessity says:

                Exactly what do you think those data show? And is 6 year graduation rate the only measure we care about? What in those data speak to instructional or research quality.?

              • Ostrich says:

                The website that you linked to shows that UO is slightly cheaper than OSU, and much cheaper ($15K vs $19K) if you take financial aid into account. This difference is reflected in the fact that UO has a lower federal loan default rate. It also says that UO has a better 6 year graduation rate (72% vs. 65%), despite the fact that OSU is recruiting slightly stronger students (based on high school grades and SAT scores). OSU has slightly higher median earnings 10 years after entry, but that seems to be explained by the fact that they are recruiting better students. In what way can you use these data to conclude that OSU is a better value than UO?

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