All Posts Tagged With: "Compensation"
Salaries and benefits of 60 Canadian university presidents
Students are often amazed at how much university presidents are paid and express indignation at high salaries in student newspapers. Last week, such a piece was printed in the University of Alberta’s Gateway. “With budget cuts choking the university’s finances, it’s frustrating to see public servants paid like CEOs,” wrote Cole Forster.
The obvious arguments in favour of high presidents’ salaries are that they earn them and would otherwise be lured away by competitors. It’s also worth noting theses salaries are taxed at rates as high as 50 per cent (in Nova Scotia).
For comparison’s sake, here is a list of what 60 Canadian university presidents received in pre-tax salaries and benefits in 2011, sourced from the 2013-14 Canadian Association of University Teachers Almanac of Post-secondary Education.
Western University, Amit Chakma: $591,490
University of Calgary, Elizabeth Cannon: $545,000
Students and parents don’t see value in $400,000 salaries
I attended a lecture at the University of Toronto last week where some of Canada’s brightest higher education experts spoke to a Canadian Studies class about The Future of Canadian Universities. It was in a derelict lecture hall in University College with broken seats and dusty windows, a common sight in an age of austerity.
The consensus among the administrator, the bureaucrat and the professor on the panel was that with tuition at $7,180 and rising in Ontario and universities experiencing annual crises to balance their books, something’s got to give. According to them, that something ought to include “differentiation,” a government policy that would force professors and schools to focus on what they do best, either teaching or research—not both.
Differentiation may indeed help and it’s a conversation we should have. But it occurred to me, as I sat in that creaking seat, that something else ought to give. Them.
Head of Western highest paid
Ten Ontario university presidents earned more than $400,000 in compensation in 2012, according to the new Ontario Public Sector Salary Disclosure, also known as the Sunshine List. The list shows salaries of all public employees who earned $100,000 or more.
One university president, Amit Chakma of Western, cleared the half-million dollar mark in total compensation.
Of the 88,412 names, nearly 15,000 of them work at universities. Last year there were 14,000 from universities. Most are professors, though most of the highest paid are presidents and principals.
Here are their salaries and taxable benefits, in order:
1. University of Western Ontario CHAKMA, AMIT $479,600.04, $41,123.21
Continue reading Here’s what Ontario university presidents made in 2012
Students pay the price for high compensation
As Canadian universities continue to pay the most generous compensation to their professors in the world, something is going to have to give. Mix this with pensions that are sometimes worth more than the paycheque of professors in the U.S. and U.K. and it’s a recipe for budgetary disaster.
St. Francis Xavier University is the most recent university staff to go on strike, cancelling classes for more than 4,000 students. Pay and the contracting of term professors are some of the justifications offered by the Association of Nova Scotia University Teachers (ANSUT).
According to Statistics Canada’s 2011 report, assistant professors at St. FX made a median of $74,377 in 2010-11 while full professors earned a median of $123,673. The average assistant professor’s salary nationwide was $91,035 and the average full professor’s salary was $143,366. That’s far higher than most Canadians will ever earn.
As the Ontario Undergraduate Student Alliance reported in a 2011 study, new funds for teaching staff there are mostly going to current professors, so it’s not as if students are benefiting.
Saskatchewan cuts millions while former execs get paid
There’s a bit of panic these days at the University of Saskatchewan. Secretaries who gave decades to the school are now boxing up their desks and students are worried about the quality of their programs as the university chops its way out of a budget deficit projected at $44.5-million by 2016.
In November five administrative staff from humanities and fine arts were fired. Then the university announced the closure of a remote campus,* leaving students in certain disciplines unsure whether they would graduate on schedule. Last week, 40 more job cuts were promised.
Adding insult to injury is that a couple of guys who helped run the university right before this crisis are receiving a combined $1.3-million from the budget after leaving, reports the StarPhoenix. And that doesn’t include pension contributions.
Your university degree may be worth less than you think
The message to young people is simple. If you want an extra million dollars, maybe more, just get a university degree. Your lifetime earnings will be at least that much more than those of someone with only a high school education. Or so says the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada (AUCC), quoting the 2006 census.
The university establishment does not lack confidence on this matter. In September 2012, Paul Davidson, president of the AUCC, quoted a more impressive statistic: “While it is true that tuition has increased in recent years, so too has the value of a degree. The income premium of a university degree is large and growing. University graduates will on average earn $1.3 million more during their careers than a high school graduate and $1 million more than a college grad.”
Uncomfortable washrooms, tuition, & angry naked folks
1. Some students at the University of Victoria are uncomfortable with the new “multi-stall gender inclusive washrooms” in the Student Union Building. The student union got rid of the old man-woman divide by renovating urinals and changing the gendered signs to show just a toilet. The goal is to make life more comfortable for transgender students. I guess one person’s comfort is another person’s discomfort sometimes.
2. The new Mattamy Athletic Centre at the Gardens (formerly Maple Leaf Gardens) is sponsored by Molson Coors. There are multiple beer ads and beer is for sale in the concession. While hockey fans are saying “thank God,” other people apparently have a problem with it. Ryerson University President Sheldon Levy, true to form, has a pragmatic response: “you can sneeze and be within 40 paces of the Gardens and have alcohol, so how am I supposed to police things?,” he told The Eyeopener, adding, “I consider the students adults and I trust them to make judgments.”
3. Two University of Regina students are seeking sanctuary in a church after the Canada Border Services Agency decided to deport them to Nigeria because they illegally worked for two weeks at Walmart. U of R President Vianne Timmons is lobbying the government to allow them to stay.
Arcade Fire, James Holmes, professor pay and maple syrup
1. Thieves in Quebec stole $30-million of maple syrup from a warehouse in St-Louis-de-Blandford, 160 kilometres northeast of Montreal. You may think this is funny until you realize that it affects maple syrup prices for all of us. It’s a clear sign we need more offshore production.
2. Here’s a charity basketball game actually worth seeing: POP Montreal will host the second annual “POP vs. Jock,” game featuring Win Butler of Arcade Fire and Nikolai Fraiture of the Strokes while Arcade Fire’s lovely Régine Chassagne provides organ accompaniment. They will battle with McGill Redmen and Concordia Stingers on Sept. 22 at McGill’s Sports Centre.
3. Harvard University is investigating 125 students for cheating on a take-home final exam. Nearly half of the students in an introductory government class are suspected of jointly coming up with answers or copying off one another. It’s a sad day folks: the honour system has been discredited.
Aviation careers start with long days at low pay
For this inaugural podcast, I interviewed Kurt Jahr, a 26 year-old from Markham, Ont. who landed his dream job flying for Air Canada Jazz out of Toronto’s Pearson Airport. He started in January.
Jahr got the job was after paying his dues in Gander, Nfld. and Timmins, Ont. He’s been flying since age 14 and earned a Bachelor of Business Administration in Aviation & Operations Management at the University of New Brunswick in 2007.
What was your first job like?
I was employed by Capital Airways and Capital Airways is who I did my training with. They’re coupled with the University of New Brunswick. I worked the ramps, I cleaned planes, I fueled planes, I worked the hangar. I worked as dispatch and then I got to fly, maybe a couple hours every week.
I moved on to instructing a couple months after that, I moved to Gander Newfoundland where I had to teach people how to fly. Same thing. You’re making maybe $25,000 per year and you’re working 12 to 14 hour days, so there’s a lot of work in it. But what you’re basically trying to do is build your hours, get experience for that next job, build experience for your next job and eventually make it up to the airlines.
Will voters remember this at the polls?
Quebec’s university administrators have long said their schools are underfunded. They blame the province’s low tuition rates, which are capped by the government at less than half what universities in Ontario and Nova Scotia are allowed to charge.
The administrators say they need more money to hire top researchers, attract international students, reduce class sizes and improve libraries.
Their demands were more or less met when the Liberal government announced it would nearly double tuition over several years.
Student groups, on the other hand, have long argued that Quebec universities don’t have a funding problem. They say it’s a spending problem.
Provisional council will look for savings in the wrong places
It’s easy to dismiss Quebec’s protesting students. Many people in the Rest of Canada did exactly that about 12 weeks ago when student unions decided that they would skip classes and block others from pursuing their educations too.
That was followed by near-nightly vandalism in Montreal, regular disruptions to commuters and policing bills that are no doubt in the millions.
Besides, the tuition students pay outside Quebec is much higher. After a fee increase of $1,778 over seven years, Quebec students will still pay far less than the rest of us. The economy is weak, Quebec taxpayers are overburdened, therefore it seemed to many of us that students are simply being selfish.
What profs at 59 Canadian universities earned in 2010-11
Every student has heard at least one professor complain that he or she is overworked. At certain times, that’s no doubt true. But the annual Statistics Canada report on full-time faculty salaries shows that along with the big workloads come big salaries. The average full-time professor earned $115,513 in 2010-11. The average full-time employee in Canada earns just $50,000.
Does that mean we should all enroll in PhDs? Not exactly. The number of PhDs is increasing rapidly, while the number of professors hired in 2010-11 was up just 0.8 per cent over the year before. The professoriate is graying: the average age is 50.
U.S. salary stats highlight value of Canadian universities
A few weeks ago, it was revealed that full-time professors in Canada are, on average, the best paid in the world. They make $86,352 at mid-career and $113,820 at the end of their careers. In the U.S., profs earn just $72,648 at mid-career and a measly $88,296 in their golden years.
The revelation that American professors make less than our own was a matter of public outrage: Let’s pay the bums less!
It was also a boost to our collective ego. A mere decade ago we wrung our national hands at how our best and brightest always seemed to move south for higher pay. Now, they stay. Phew!
Many profs and admins in top one per cent
Ontario’s annual Public Sector Salary Disclosure has been published. The so-called Sunshine List reveals the compensation paid to every public employee who made $100,000 or more last year.
Of the 79,000 employees on the 2011 list, 13,819 work for universities. That’s not surprising, considering it was revealed last week that Canada’s professors are the world’s highest paid.
What’s surprising is how many university workers have crossed the threshold between five and six figures. The $100,000-club has grown by 32 per cent in just three years.
While the majority of university employees on the list earn just over $100,000, a substantial number—1,750—made $170,000 or more, which puts them in the top one per cent of Canadian earners.
Among them, 746 reached $200,000, 97 made more than $300,000 and 15 topped $400,000.
William Moriarty, president of the University of Toronto’s Asset Management Corporation, is once again the highest paid university employee in Ontario at $655,995.
The presidents of Waterloo, Western, York and Guelph all topped $400,000.
The Sunshine List was released ahead of Ontario’s provincial budget on Tuesday.
Meanwhile, in Quebec…
Just as tens of thousands of Quebec students are expected to skip class and protest a tuition increase of $1625, a new study shows that Canada’s professors are the world’s highest paid.
U.S. and Russian researchers used Purchasing Power Parity for their global salary comparison, in order to account for vastly different costs of living.
The researchers found that full-time Canadian professors make the equivalent of $68,796 (USD) at the beginning of their careers, $86,352 at mid-career and $113,820 at the end of their careers.
By comparison, professors in the United Kingdom, seventh on the list, make $20,346 less than Canadian professors at the beginning of their careers and $25,524 less than their Canadian counterparts near the end of their careers.
On Campus shows you where to look
Want to know how much the people running your university make? Is it $100,000? Would $300,000 shock you?
Finding out administrators’ salaries is easy if you go to a school in Ontario, British Columbia or Alberta, thanks to forward-thinking laws. But if you live in New Brunswick or Prince Edward Island, it’s next to impossible. Here’s a province-by-province breakdown of salary disclosure requirements.
Quebec: The information is public, but that doesn’t mean it’s easy to find. Salaries and other compensation paid to senior university administrators must be included in the annual reports that all universities submit to the National Assembly’s Culture and Education committee. Those documents can be found online here. It would be easier if the universities would post them.
It may be more than you guessed. Click to see where your school stands.
What does your professor make? Assuming he or she is a full (tenured) professor, it’s probably more than you guessed. The median pay among full professors at 31 Canadian schools is $128,480, according to a recent study.
That said, if your professor is at the University of Northern British Columbia, she likely makes a far less than if she’s with the University of British Columbia. A report by Culture, Tourism and the Centre for Education Studies shows that salaries in the 2009-10 school year followed no apparent pattern. Some highly-ranked schools pay less than not-so-prestigious schools. A few smaller schools — Trent for example — pay profs much better than bigger neighbours. The report presented data from 31 schools. That’s fewer than half of the 81 schools profiled in the Maclean’s Guide to Canadian Universities, meaning this list is far from comprehensive.
It’s worth reiterating that these figures are for full professors only. Assistant professors, associate professors and contract faculty make much less and many academics work for more than a decade before getting full status, if they ever do. Still, these numbers show that professorship is a lucrative career from coast to coast.
Trent – 158,876
Calgary – 154,008
British Columbia – 151,145
Alberta – 145,585
Athabasca – 144,689
McMaster – 144,366
Lethbridge – 144,255
York – 143,091
Wilfrid Laurier – 142,905
Windsor – 141,831
Ottawa – 141,417
Guelph – 139,934
Lakehead – 137,827
Manitoba – 137,765
Brock – 137,666
UOIT – 135,000
St. Mary’s – 129,603
Victoria – 128,122
UPEI – 126,903
Memorial – 126,623
Nipissing – 123,754
New Brunswick – 123,546
St. Thomas – 123,307
Brandon – 117,494
Acadia – 110,000
UNBC – 103,796
Cape Breton – 102,622
Mount Royal – 101,974
OCAD – 101,086
Kwantlen – 84,896
Trinity Western – 78,778
More than 43 admins make more than $200,000
Late last week, there was controversy after it was revealed that a Université Laval vice-rector had received a 30 per cent pay increase without proper approval from the university’s board. Le Soleil reported that Éric Bauce received the increase on a temporary basis when he took over a sick colleagues duties, but continued to be paid the higher wage even after she returned to work. The National Assembly was told Bauce received a salary of $246,000.*
But a salary that high is not as much of an anomaly as it may seem. In 2008 – 2009, the most recent year for which complete numbers are available, there were 43 university administrators in Quebec with base salaries of more than $200,000 a year, according to the National Assembly’s Culture and Education Committee. The majority of them worked at three large universities in Montreal, with 13 at McGill, 12 at the Université de Montréal and nine at Concordia. Those three schools were home to all 10 of the highest paid administrators in the province.
But bigger student populations don’t necessarily mean more money. The Université du Québec à Montréal, the province’s second largest university, doesn’t have any administrators who are paid more than $200,000. Laval and the Université de Sherbrooke each have only three. And although McGill pays the highest wages, it’s only Quebec’s fifth largest university by population.
In addition to base salary, many senior administrators also receive other benefits, sometimes worth tens of thousands of dollars. Universities are only required to disclose the total dollar value of all perks given to an individual, so details can be hard to find. But some schools have revealed more information. At Concordia, for instance, the president is entitled to housing and car allowances as well as memberships in private clubs.
Here is a list of the 10 highest paid university administrators in Quebec based on documents filed with the National Assembly last fall:
1. Heather Munroe-Blum, McGill principal – $585,481 (base pay of $356,174 plus $229,307 in perks and other compensation.**)
2. Richard Levin, McGill vice principal, health and medical affairs and dean of medicine – $548,929 (base pay of $496,921 plus $52,008 in perks and other compensation.)
3. Judith Woodsworth, Concordia president (Woodsworth was forced to resign last December) – $392,875 (base pay of $350,000 plus $42,875 in perks and other compensation.)
4. Luc Vinet, U de M rector (Vinet’s term ended June 1, 2010) – $362,230 (base pay of $339,031 plus $23,199 in perks and other compensation.)
5. Kathy Assayag, Concordia vice-president, advancement and alumni relations; president of the Concordia University foundation (Assayag left the university for “personal reasons” in September 2010) – $334,323 (base pay of $283,785 plus $50,538 in perks and other compensation.)
6. Michael Di Grappa, Concordia vice-president, services (DiGrappa left Concordia to take a position at McGill in late October, 2010) – $330,042 (base pay of $240,179 plus $89,863 in perks and other compensation.)
7. Rima Rozen, McGill assistant vice-principal, research and international relations – $317,553 (base pay of $226,933 plus $90,620 in perks and other compensation.)
8. Jean-Lucien Rouleau, U de M dean, medicine – $316,174 (base pay of $311,489 plus $4,023 in perks and other compensation.)
9. Peter Allan Todd, McGill dean, management – $310,137 (base pay of $308,129 plus $2,008 in perks and other compensation.)
10. Marc Weinstein, McGill vice-principal, development and alumni relations – $306,185 (base pay of $264,762 plus $41,423 in perks and other compensation.)
Photo courtesy of Duckie Monster on Flickr.
*An earlier version of this article incorrectly stated Éric Bauce’s salary. On Campus regrets the error.
**An earlier version of this article lumped together all non-salary compensation as “perks.” A more accurate description is “perks and other compensation,” because this figure includes royalty payments, bonuses, housing allowances and car allowances.
University executives are paid top dollar and, regardless of their success, never leave empty-handed
This story from the National Post reviews the ongoing controversy over executive compensation at McGill University. The story notes that Ms. Ann Dowsett Johnston, former editor of the Maclean’s Guide to Canadian Universities, was paid $761,000 in compensation for less than two years in the position of Vice-Principal.
The story alleges that Ms. Dowsett Johnston, who was hired to head McGill’s $750 million fundraising effort despite a lack of experience in the area of fundraising, was a personal friend of McGill principal Heather Munroe-Blum. Intrigue aside, the article raises some important points about the issue of inflated executive compensation at Canadian universities:
. . .the large payout to Ms. Dowsett Johnston is symptomatic of a larger trend in Canada’s publicly funded universities, where raises in executive pay have far outstripped inflation in recent years. As universities adopt the credo that they must function more like corporations, their top executives expect to be paid accordingly. And as in the business world, when things don’t work out, they do not leave empty-handed.
If your institution is in Ontario, you might be able to find out
I don’t know, but if your institution is in Ontario, you might be able to find out here!
Can’t believe I hadn’t seen this before. I can attest that what professors are getting in Ontario is across-the-board higher than what they’re getting at MUN, as our government can confirm: here’s a fairly comprehensive Statscan report on the subject, albeit without the juicy details. Not that that’s wrong, mind you.