Follow Us:


  • Article
  • Comments

Poll: Are We Overpaying the Presidents of NJ’s Public Colleges, Universities?

The price of public education keeps climbing. Are six-figure pay packages for college and university presidents an appropriate payday?

NJ Spotlight this week highlighted the salaries and benefits awarded the presidents of our public colleges and universities. They range from salaries of $676,000 for Robert Barchi, who heads up Rutgers University, to substantial compensation at other schools. But extraordinary benefits can ensure multimillion-dollar payments after they step down.

Do you think these individuals are due this compensation?

  • Whatever you think of the individual salaries, the plain fact is that our state has to keep up with national trends if we want a public higher education system that matches other quality institutions. Some of these salaries and benefits have become standard, and we can’t deny our executives similar compensation if we want to attract quality leaders.

  • For the most part, the salaries listed seem reasonable given the responsibility. Barchi runs a massive education system with three campuses and a reorganized medical research and teaching institution. Given that, $676,000 plus a car and bonuses seems about right to me. But don’t get me started on the athletic department.

  • Salaries are one thing but golden parachutes are another. How can any board justify awarding what’s essentially a goodbye package of $3million on top of a $337,000 annual salary? These loyalty bonuses, annual pay after they are gone, and lucrative teaching positions are just unconscionable.

  • Our state boards of higher education are awarding these pay packages while tuition goes up and up. It’s like play money to them! These people are appointed by the governor, but the administration is hardly funding our higher-ed system. So who has to pay in the end -- New Jersey’s shrinking middle class. No wonder most kids leave the state for college.

  • The particularly disturbing fact of these high-flying salaries is that most of the work of actual teaching falls on adjunct professors who are paid peanuts -- usually between $3,000 and $5,000 a semester. Then you have teaching assistants, who are at the mercy of tenured faculty and paid barely a living wage while they work toward a graduate degree. It doesn’t take long to see that something is very wrong with this picture.

Read more in Polling
Corporate Supporters
Most Popular Stories