University of Kansas professors are sad, according to the Lawrence Journal-World. KU faculty aired grievances during a university chapter meeting of the American Association of University Professors last week. Among their concerns? Low pay, administrative bloat, and an announcement the university will build a new football stadium. Oh, and legalized concealed weapons on campus.
Guns didn’t make the original list quoted by KU professor Ron Barrett-Gonzalez, but the Lawrence Journal-World lists concealed weapons in the first sentence and in the headline of the story.
““Low pay is a big thing. We’re seeing a lot of administrative bloat, which is very troubling,” he said. “Because, as our pay is getting cut, cut, cut, they’re spending more on the (football) stadium and more on themselves in the administration, and weakening the strength of the entire faculty at the same time.”
Barrett-Gonzalez told meeting attendees that the average faculty salary declined an average of 9 percent since 2009. The aerospace engineering professor said pay erosion threatens KU’s membership in the American Association of Universities. Oh, and guns.
“Faculty members are antagonized by the guns on campus, and we’re also getting paid a lot less,” he said.
Perhaps a larger point of contention than guns is KU faculty salaries have been decreasing while KU’s administrator salaries are on the rise. One professor quoted in the article called the decision to increase administrative salaries a deliberate intention to “divert funds away from faculty and to other offices.”
Though the LJW dwelt on concealed weapons in the first half of its story, Barrett-Gonzalez reserved his strongest words in the article for the KU’s plan to spend $300 million (in private donations) improving its football stadium.
“The academic side is crumbling, and while it’s neat to get a new stadium, it looks OK to me. (The stadium) has no impact on the earning power of our alumni. And that’s a big deal,” he told the LJW.