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Feast or Famine? It’s Academic

by Chris Cumo

THE GAP BETWEEN rich and poor is as much a fact of academe
as of American society. 74 private colleges and universities
paid their presidents more than $300,000 in the 1998-1999
academic year. The number of presidents above the $300,000
mark represented a 21 percent increase from the previous year,
when 61 presidents eclipsed $300,000, and is almost double
the 38 presidents who earned more than $300,000 in 1995-1996.
Twenty-one presidents made between $400,000 and $499,000 in
1998-1999, and seven presidents surpassed $500,000 in pay
and benefits.

With such hefty salaries being paid to college presidents,
how much, we wondered, did the average adjunct earn at the
institutions managed by the presidents in question?

James O. Freedman, president emeritus of Dartmouth College
led the pack in 1998-1999, receiving $920,909, of which $474,528
were severance benefits. But base pay for adjuncts in Dartmouth’s
English department is a mere $3,090 in pay with no benefits.
Second to Freedman was Harry C. Payne, who earned $878,222
in salary and benefits during 1998-1999, his last year as
president of Williams College in Massachusetts. Adjuncts in
that English department earn a base pay of $3,800 with no
benefits. John R. Silber

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