UPDATE: Chuck points out this take on the situation – my favorite passage:
“Could I have done it without a research leave?” [Chancellor] Moeser said. “Sure. But I would not have been approaching the fall with the same excitement and anticipation as I am.”
This is strangely short story from InsideHigherEd without much explanation, just facts:
The University of North Carolina paid $8 million over the last five years in “retreat rights,” salaries to help former administrators prepare to return to the classroom, The Raleigh News & Observer reported. In many cases, the salaries were what the officials earned in senior positions, far more than the faculty jobs for which they were preparing. The article noted that while some of these officials were well respected, others were paid “for a job poorly done,” and that there is no requirement that those receiving the funds actually return to teaching. The article noted that one former provost in the system was paid $104,000 to prepare for a return to teaching, but after taking the funds, retired.
Interestingly enough, UNC The Raleigh News and Observer has a longer version of the story:
Chancellor James Moeser was paid $390,000 last year to prepare to teach; this year, he will be paid more than $234,000 for his work co-teaching one class each semester and mentoring faculty members who are considering going into administration. His salary is nearly twice the average salary paid to other full professors in the music department.
University administrators are among the best-paid employees in state government. UNC-Chapel Hill Chancellor Holden Thorp, for example, makes $420,000 a year, more than three times Gov. Beverly Perdue’s $139,590 salary.
This story should be a nice addition to Mark Bousquet’s latest essay on the relationship between faculty and administration as neither InsideHigherEd nor the other paper really discuss the implication of such an indecently high salaries and perks:
The administration building’s air conditioning is on full blast; their carpets are new and regularly cleaned; their kids are in private school, and they still get out for golf while you’re grading papers or paying for your research out of pocket, stealing time from your kids’ lives. On the occasions they’ve taken pay cuts, they’ve generally been symbolic, knocking a grand or two off a monthly take that would buy an average person a new car.