Faculty salary talk addresses gap between UWP, comparable universitiesBy Gerrad Frei • May 10, 2012 • Category: News
It was the third time in four months that Faculty Senate spoke about faculty salaries when Ray Spoto presented his findings April 17. This time, however, the talk centered on how the University of Wisconsin-Platteville paid professors in comparison to other universities around the country.
The statistics were less than stellar.
The information brought forward by the professor of Spanish showed that nearly all comparable universities provided their professors with salaries of at least a few thousand dollars more per year than at UW-Platteville.
Even professors from universities in states commonly known for their lack of institutional prestige, such as Mississippi, on average earned more than their UW-Platteville counterparts, Spoto said.
“I asked Ray to present his findings because I know how passionate he is about the topic,” said David Rowley, professor of history and chair of Faculty Senate. “Also, I felt that the information he provided was of a great concern to the Senate and needed to be heard.”
Rob Cramer, assistant chancellor for Administrative Services, agreed strongly with Rowley, but also mentioned that “there are various other employee salaries that are also very important.”
After his presentation Spoto said that paying professor less is not only difficult on the professors but is also detrimental to the students’ education.
“If we aren’t able to pay a decent amount, then we cannot be competitive when searching for teachers to hire,” Spoto said. “And if we can’t get the best teachers for the positions open, we can’t give students the best education.”
Cramer agreed and said there have been candidates in the past who have declined teaching at UW-Platteville, solely on the university’s inability to pay a desired salary.
“However, that does not mean that there are not quality professors here,” Cramer said. “We do have some outstanding faculty members. But this is a problem, and it shouldn’t be. We need to find a way to fix it.”
Cramer said the university has a goal to put a compensation plan in place for professors to help raise salaries and hopefully raise UW-Platteville’s ability to be competitive when hiring professors.