Survey: Utah's University Presidents' Salaries Lagging
November 23, 2006
Utah university president's are lagging behind their colleagues nationwide when it comes to compensation, a new survey shows.
A growing percentage of college and university presidents now earn more than $500,000 annually, according to The Chronicle of Higher Education report.
None of Utah's university leaders are taking home paychecks like that. Their salaries also fall below the median compensation of public university presidents of $375,000, a number up 4.1 percent from last year.
"We wish we could be a little more competitive," University of Utah spokeswoman Coralie Alder said.
The Chronicle annually tracks university president salaries. The study doesn't account for cost of living differences between states.
Including bonuses and retirement, University of Utah President Michael K. Young makes $360,884. Stan L. Albrecht, president of Utah State University earns $300,398.
On average, university presidents in Utah's neighboring states of Arizona, New Mexico and Colorado make $200,000 more than Albrecht, the survey showed.
Utah's System of Higher Education is working to boost presidential pay, said Mark Spencer, Utah's associate commissioner of higher education.
To set compensation rates, the state compares Utah's schools with 10 other institutions offering similar programs and comparative costs of living and responsibilities. The goal is to set salaries that are within 90 percent of compensation at those comparative schools.
The survey looked at presidential salaries at 183 public research universities and 816 private college. Of those, 23 percent of public schools and 10 percent of private schools offered compensation packages of $500,000 or greater.
In part salaries have increased because of an emerging corporate culture at universities, survey analysts said,
That could add to ever-growing tuition rates, although in Utah the impact is minimal, Spencer said. The state pays an average of 65 percent salaries for all university employees with only a miniscule effect on tuition.
Only the University of Utah and Utah State were included in the survey. Because of a religious exemption, Brigham Young University does not file the tax forms surveyors use to compile the list.
Westminster College President Michael S. Bassis earns $265,313 annually, including benefits.