Higher Ed Leaders See Modest Salary Increases, but Gender Disparity Emerges as a Key Issue
Senior leaders in higher education saw pay raises this academic year, but the rate of increase dropped somewhat and is accompanied by a sharpening salary gap between genders, according to the College and University Professional Association for Human Resources (CUPA-HR).
Data from the CUPA-HR 2015-16 Administrators in Higher Education Salary Survey show that the median base salary increase this academic year for administrators for all institutions combined was 2.1 percent; last year it was 2.4 percent, and it had been rising steadily for the previous four years.
The low level of pay increase shown in the survey is largely the result of a difficult squeeze many institutions face, according to CUPA-HR President and CEO Andy Brantley. “Colleges and universities continue to struggle to balance the need to minimize tuition increases and the need to adequately acknowledge and reward outstanding employee performance, as evidenced by the small pay increases awarded again this year.”
The survey also found:
- Private colleges and universities are back on top when it comes to pay raises for senior leaders. Administrators in private institutions saw a median base salary increase this academic year of 2.2 percent, compared to a 2.0 percent increase for those in the same positions at public institutions. Publics had outpaced privates for the past two years for pay increases in this group, but prior to that, privates edged out publics for several years in a row.
- The median base salary increase for administrators at doctoral institutions this academic year was 2.5 percent; at bachelor’s and special focus institutions, it was 2.3 percent; and at master’s and associate’s institutions, it was 2 percent.
- The median base salary for a CEO at a single institution ranged from $190,000 at associate’s institutions to $452,370 at research universities. The median base salary for a chief academic officer ranged from $132,940 at associate’s institutions to $353,796 at research institutions. Other executive salaries reflected similar differences based on institution type.
- The highest paid deans were those in the areas of medicine, dentistry, law, public health, and engineering.
- Public and private institutions differ substantially in the salaries they pay for certain executive positions. The widest gap exists in the position of president, with private institutions paying nearly $50,000 more than public institutions.
Along with the generally smaller pay raises reported this year, CUPA-HR has identified gender disparity as a significant trend that needs to be addressed. The 2015-16 Administrators in Higher Education Salary Survey shows that males occupy the overwhelming majority of executive positions in higher ed, and that male presidents outnumber female presidents 2 to 1. According to the survey, the only position in which females occupy the overwhelming majority of positions is that of chief HR officer, in which females outnumber males nearly 3 to 1.
The survey also shows that males earn a higher median salary than females in 12 of the 15 executive positions reported, with the highest salary gap being in the position of chief financial officer; in that position females are shown to earn $.77 for every dollar that males earn.
According to CUPA-HR, the sharp disparity between genders demands increased focus among higher-education institutions. “Closing the pay gap between men and women in leadership roles must be a priority for higher education, as should bringing more women into the leadership pipeline,” says Brantley. “Our hope is that these gender disparities related to pay and position will lessen with each year moving forward.”
HigherEdJobs® annually publishes the salary survey results from CUPA-HR and all the survey results will be available once the data is released. You can view the 2014-15 data here.
Originally posted on Higheredjobs.com by:David Bellm
Contact John Assunto for all of your Education Recruiting needs! Johna@worldbridgepartners.com or 860-387-0503