A recent Bloomberg Businessweek article is making the rounds at UH (“The Troubling Dean-to-Professor Ratio“).
At universities nationwide, employment of administrators jumped 60 percent from 1993 to 2009, 10 times the growth rate for tenured faculty. “Administrative bloat is clearly contributing to the overall cost of higher education,” says Jay Greene, an education professor at the University of Arkansas. In a 2010 study, Greene found that from 1993 to 2007, spending on administration rose almost twice as fast as funding for research and teaching at 198 leading U.S. universities.
According to the article, some schools are reassessing administrative salaries. The University of Connecticut, for example, is said to be looking at administrative compensation following a controversy over the salary of the campus police chief, who was paid more than the New York City police commissioner.
At UH, similar comparisons could be made. The university’s general counsel, for example, is paid $223,488, which is 43% more than the Chief Justice of the Hawaii Supreme Court (who receives $156,727).
Some have dubbed the UH administration “the new Bishop Estate.”
And although the faculty union has consistently raised the issue of administrative bloat, it has yet to be taken seriously.
Will the Senate return in the new year to give additional scrutiny to the administrative budget?