We’re very focused on students here at Wesleying (“Real students, real student life at Wesleyan University”) but we can’t forget about our professors. If my mother’s correct when she says, “Remember, you’re in school to get an education,” then professors should be the most important people here to us.
If you’ve ever read Tenured Radical, you can’t help but to feel for them, however. Today, she asserted, “after almost two decades in which we have repeatedly been promised that Zenith (ed. note. Zenith is actually Wesleyan. Tenured Radical avoids actually saying Wesleyan most of the time.) will do something about a compensation rate that lags far behind our peer institutions, one can’t help but feel that they have thrown in the towel without admitting that they have done so.”
From my own research (table after the bump), Wesleyan doesn’t do too poorly among NESCAC schools (I didn’t actually look at all liberal arts colleges). Only our two Little Three buddies pay [full] professors more. For associate professors, five out of the ten other schools pay more and one matches us. For assistant professors, we are beat again by five out of the ten other schools (are we intentionally aiming at the middle here?). Out of curiosity, I compared the salaries to U.S. News & World Report’s Best Undergraduate Teaching rankings for our category, but didn’t get much of a correlation out of it.
Either way, the Tenured Radical does paint a pretty dire picture of what it’s like to work for Wesleyan:
At street level, things are horrendously disorganized, and you have to make a special call to get someone to vacuum your office. We have not received a raise that was not instantly swallowed by the increased cost of our benefits. In real dollars, our pay is static and losing traction; research and conference dollars tend not to meet expenses incurred.[…] Furthermore, everyone who works for the university is being asked to accept cuts in compensation so that the university can build endowments to pay for unlimited student financial aid and shave a percentage point off next year’s tuition increase. This will make us the second or third most expensive liberal arts school in the nation, as opposed to the most expensive.
At the heart of her conclusion is a great point though: professors rarely use the landline phones in their offices. I for one have never seen a faculty member (or student) make/take an off campus call on a university landline. Maybe there could be central locations for faculty to use university landlines when they need it rather than one in each office. They might not cost much these days, but if this is the case, why not actually make cuts where they’ll be felt less?
Average NESCAC Faculty Salaries
|School||(Full) Prof||Assoc Prof||Asst Prof||Teaching Rank|
Related: For whatever reason, average annual salaries are higher for males than they are for females in every category of professor at Wesleyan.