Tuesday, November 03, 2009

CCAP in the News

by Daniel L. Bennett

CCAP has been cited in the major media quite frequently during the past week. In an effort to keep our readers up-to-date on the impact that CCAP is having on higher education reform, here are some of the links.

Richard Vedder is quoted in the Boston Globe today on the continual rise of college presidential salaries.
“I find it bordering on scandalous...trustees are just wasting valuable assets"

"paying presidents such handsome sums run counter to colleges’ nonprofit mission and exploits their many tax advantages"
CCAP was cited on the Lou Dobbs Tonight TV show on CNN last night.
KITTY PILGRIM, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The Center for College Affordability and Productivity found that from 1987 to 2007, many colleges became bloated bureaucracies, hiring legions of what they call paper pushers, driving up college costs...

PILGRIM: Now the Center for College Affordability and Productivity finds that for every new freshman entering college on average, two administrators were added. That's been going on for two decades. Senator Grassley and some education watchdogs say the nonprofit status of universities makes them very indifferent to the rising costs and they've been able to pass those costs on to students for decades...

DOBBS: That is insane. Fascinating -- it is absolutely mind- boggling. Universities teaching young people presumably dispensing knowledge and behaving like idiots. I mean I'm not sure that's a great thing for

PILGRIM: Hiring is out of control apparently.

DOBBS: Well, again, you know it's really amazing when you think what we're facing in this country during a period of economic weakness. We've got 30 million people unemployed. Wages are declining. In fact, they've been stagnant for years...
Richard Vedder wrote an OpEd for the Grand Forks Herald in North Dakota last week to discuss the findings of a recent study that CCAP completed for the North Dakota Policy Policy Council, entitled "Higher Education and North Dakota's Economic Future."

Richard Vedder was cited in a NY Times article last week discussing for-profit higher education providers.
“The for-profits are concentrating 100 percent of their effort on teaching students what they want to be taught, when they want to be taught


Ted Nesbitt said...

I watched the Lou Dobbs show last evening. Although we are experiencing "administrative bloating" at my public university, it is certainly not in keeping with Ms. Pilgrim's statement that "for every new freshman entering college on average" TWO ADMINISTRATORS ARE HIRED. She must have misinterpreted your findings, or I am not getting this picture at all. I hope you can clarity her remark. I also wish the CCAP would travel to West Virginia to study our dismal situation. Thank you.

capeman said...

Ted Nesbitt -- I'm not sure what CCAP actually said, but this sounds like the kind of absurd claim they make.

If what was claimed were true where I work -- two new administrators for each new freshman -- in the last two decades, we would have ADDED more twice as many administrators as the TOTAL number of FTE faculty!

Perhaps we are overadministered, but not that much.

The writer who published this claim should have known how absurd it is.

Center for College Affordability and Productivity said...

Mr. Nesbitt:
The correct statistic is that college administrative and support staffs grew at a rate approximately double that of enrollment between 1997 and 2007.

capeman said...

Ah, so what was reported IS absurd. The rate of growth was double -- not the absolute numbers of new administrators vs. new freshman -- a huge difference.

It's interesting that both the CNN correspondent and Lou Dobbs, the latter talking about universities "behaving like idiots", can't even get this straight. Talk about idiots! It's amazing that these buffoons have a national audience on TV.

Note, that it's administrative plus SUPPORT staff. The latter a much larger category.

The growth of "support" staff at the expense of "instruction" may be cause for alarm -- I think it is -- but a lot of this is student-driven.

Here where I work, there has been huge growth has been in diversity, "sustainability", resident-life staff.

Try cutting this back, and you will hear nothing but student bellyaching, at least from the students who tend to talk the loudest.

So to a large extent, the students have nobody to blame but themselves. Or to put it better, they are certainly complicit.

Cowboy said...

Caveman never opens his mouth or posts a comment without subtracting from the sum total of human knowledge.