Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Salaried

A friend of mine from another institution and I recently played a game of "Show me yours, I'll show you mine." No, not that kind. ;)
Namely, both my friend and I are at large public research universities, but in different physical science fields. The salaries of everyone at public universities should be publicly available, even though in many cases actually digging these numbers up may be a bit nontrivial (e.g may perhaps be done only on campus etc.)
In the cases of our two universities, there are conveniently accessible websites where you can look up everyone's salaries, so we exchanged the URLs. It was fun and educational to see what my colleagues at a peer institution make. To all of you who are looking at tenure-track positions, looking up salaries at the public universities where you interview is a very good idea, so you would know what to expect, whether you are being low-balled, and how much you can negotiate.

But, in addition to looking up peers, it is interesting to see how much people in different fields make at different institutions. I am giving you the listing of the highest paid university personnel at my friend's institution. The names and other identifying information have been removed to protect the innocent, but there is still plenty of number goodness to ponder; the third column is simply the fraction of a full time appointment. You can click to enlarge.



The athletic department salaries are very high, which I believe surprises no one. Still, it rubs me in a particularly wrong way in the light of the Penn State scandal.

Note how much less a women's basketball coach makes than a men's -- hey, the poor dude/dudette they may well be a professor, that's how little they make! Then see the relative proportion of administration versus faculty among the highest earners. Also, among the highest earning faculty, those from law are the most numerous.

On this list is a person who I know to be a Nobel laureate in physics; there may be others on this list, in disciplines far removed from mine, but no time to look them up. It's interesting to note that one football head coach equals 6 Nobel-prize-winning physicists...

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

It's interesting to note their one head football coach equals 6 Nobel-prize-winning physicists...

This makes perfect sense. I know the Nobel prize winner in question and he can hardly tackle.

structurefunction said...

Wow, I should've studied larger bugs. Two entomologists making over $250K/year?

gasstationwithoutpumps said...

Our salaries are posted in the local paper:
http://www.santacruzsentinel.com/ci_16838779?IADID=Search-www.santacruzsentinel.com-www.santacruzsentinel.com

You can search the database by name or salary range. In that database, we had 28 over $200,000, 6 of whom were pure administrators, 3 of whom were astronomers, and the rest were professors (mostly in engineering). Many of the highly paid professors were also administrators or ex-administrators. Highest salary was our chancellor at almost $310k.

We are NCAA Division III, which means no athletic scholarships. We also have no stadium and no football team. (Intramurals are more important here than interscholastic sports, but some of the interscholastic teams are supposedly pretty good.)

The

Doc said...

I looked at this and smiled because in my school system (State Universities and colleges), the highest paid administrators make just over 200k. The professors make 5 digits, not six. And we're the ones who actually teach all our own classes and labs...isn't it funny how that works out...

Massimo said...

I am quite sure that the coaches cold go and make that money at some other school, if their present institutions decided to end their contracts. So, in that sense you cold argue that it's nothing but supply and demand.
Administrators, on the other hand...

inBetween said...

Supply and demand, my butt. It is a made-up racket for the athletics people. They have these bloated senses of self importance that leads to scared administrators afraid to say no to the coaches and their rich alumni supporters, and Penn State happens.

The high admin salaries also come from this business model that universities started implementing 10 years or so ago. We started thinking that "professional" administrator's are better than home-grown chancellors,,and so we pay pretty high salaries to recruit "good talent", who then go on to do the same to recruit top talent in athletics and hide in bunkers when students protest on campus, leaving police in riot gear to beat the students back...

BTW, I have been pretty involved in athletics stuff on my campus, and your football coach likely takes home lots more than 1.5 million -- that is just his salary. There are all kinds of bonuses written into their contracts and housing allowances and country club memberships, and cars, and parking, and spouse travel, and on and on. Our football coachgets big bonuses each year IF HE JUST STAYS. Go figure that one out. The rest of us can only get significant improvements to pay or lab or teaching conditions if we threaten to leave. Imagine a staying bonus with out having to get an outside offer...

Cherish said...

This blows me away. I think my university is the same as Doc. Most profs, barely make six digits. The former director of the research center, who was also a campus distinguished professor, wasn't even at $150k. I think our president makes around $300k.

GMP said...

Doc and Cherish: Most profs at my place (and my friend's place) also make 5 digits or low 6 digits (~$100-150 K). It depends of the field, with engineering salaries higher than most basic sciences, which pay a bit higher than the humanities. I think at most big public R1's, faculty salaries over $200 K are only for the few select superstars (at least in science/engineering).

Anonymous said...

Here you can find all the salaries for the University of California system: http://www.sacbee.com/statepay/.
UC Berkeley is quite interesting as a top national university.

Anonymous said...

These numbers (AFAIK) generally include all income, not just salary. I know some profs in my field that generate significant income from consulting, particularly giving expert testimony in patent cases (rates in the mid 3 digits per hour). I wouldn't be surprised if law professors rack up a lot more income in similar ways.

profacero said...

All these salaries are enormous. I got my first job in 1987, when I was 30, for $30K and now I make $54K, raise of $1K per year exactly. This is in humanities; started at a SLAC and am now at what under the old Carnegie categories would be a Doctoral 1.

Anonymous said...

The Santa Cruz list is fascinating. There aren't 3 astronomers on there above $200,000, there are 7! Woolsley, Faber, Nelson, Lin, Max, Epps, Margon--okay, he is admin now but he is an astronomer. I knew our field paid on the high end but assumed other STEM fields were comparable.

Astronomy is huge at Santa Cruz, mind you.

k said...

wow. I had no idea that this was possible; publically available salary listings for academics! I come from an Australian and European university background and this is not done in places that I've worked. In my experience, it is common for a university to post salary scales online. This can then be used to get an indication of individual salaries - if you know their job title, you can estimate their salary bracket. I don't think that there is any way to know how much any one person earns in total, from either negotiating an add-on to the base salary or through consulting. Here is an example: http://www.hr.unsw.edu.au/services/salaries/acadsal.html

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