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2025 Visionary Plan

Innovation and Inspiration Campaign

If you have questions or comments about K-State 2025, please send an email to 2025@k-state.edu.

K-State 2025 Faculty Compensation Report 2016 Comments

From March 2, 2016 – April 13, 2016, the K-State community was asked to provide feedback on the university 2025 faculty compensation report, "Structuring Faculty Salaries Towards K-State 2025 & Beyond" (February 2016), recommended by our Faculty Compensation Task Force. This report compiles the online comments and suggestions received during the formal comment period.

Total Responses38
Faculty25
Administrator4
University Support Staff2
Unclassified Professional6
Undergraduate Student0
Graduate Student0
Other1

 

DatePositionPlease provide your comments and suggestions regarding the Task Force recommendations and report.
3/2/2016 Unclassified ProfessionalI'd just like to point out that while most faculty members have been given meager raises over the past 10 years, or at the very least make a decent salary, most non-salaried employees are still, yes still, in a wage freeze since the recession. Couple this with a cost-of-living in Manhattan that has skyrocketed over the same time-span, over half of all classified employees cannot actually get by on a university job alone. Admittedly, this is largely due to the recession and state budget changes over the last ten years. But that doesn't mean there is nothing we can do about it. Please consider the thousands of hard-working and underpaid staff at K-State who are just as capable at their job as anyone else here. It's one thing to not earn enough money at the job you love to be able to afford all the things in life you want. It's quite another to not earn enough money at the job you love to be able to survive.
3/2/2016 AdministratorThe fixed 1% pool dollar amount makes no sense. This money should move into the merit pool. Why would we provide compensation to faculty that are not fulfilling there responsibilities. Essentially we could be moving to dismiss someone at the same time they are getting a raise. Fixed components not based off merit make no sense.
3/2/2016 FacultyK-State has a been a great place to work and I love my department and my colleagues. Manhattan is also one of the BEST college towns to raise a young family. Yet, it is painfully clear that our faculty compensation has continued to severely lag the level of productivity and quality of our faculty, despite some reasonable efforts from the school in the last few years. I have seen several of my best colleagues (and friends) leaving in the last few years. Unfortunately, the colleagues who we have lost to other schools are more often than not the most competitive and most productive ones among us. Proactive and aggressive retention measures are critical to keep our best at K-State if we ever want to reach 2025 goals. It would cost so much more if we were to recruit people of similar caliber from other institutions. I feel that our administration has been really trying, but it is hard to be optimistic with continuous budget cuts from the state. It is a very difficult decision, but I plan to look around this summer and in all likelihood will be gone by next summer.
3/2/2016 Faculty1) Kansas State University is way behind both our peers and KU in faculty salaries and this proposal says we will strive to be better, but only on average. This sort of exercise has been done before, with limited success. It is a good start, but there are other issues that need to be addressed either by this committee or by administration. 2) Average is fine, but the average at K-State is totally skewed by very high paying departments, colleges, and individual programs while others are paid much less. I would like to see the standard deviations of ranks at K-State and other universities. 2) Salary compression is a big issue. Most full professors in my department make "on average" about $4,000 more than associate professors (this is after taking out obvious outliers). 2) I see some aspects of the proposal as benefiting some ranks far more than others. The proposal benefits those who are NOT at the Full Professor Rank most. A) It does not address the woefully inadequate raises for Professorial Performance awards (raises are based on total salary base - not full professors - and is the lowest percentage of any "raise" that is mentioned. B) The proposal for an across the board 1% (average basis - not based on rank) benefits those at the lowest levels most and the highest levels least. 1% of the average compensation is probably 1.5% for some many and will be 0.5% for others - how is that fair to those who have worked here a long time and reached the full professor level. It just creates more salary compression. 3) The proposal does nothing for professors at the highest level - University Distinguished Professors who are arguably the most productive and best faculty we have. They got a 1 time raise that rapidly becomes marginalized by small increases and salary compression. 4) The proposal does not even mention the huge dichotomy among salaries across units. Associate Professors making >$125 in some units with Full Professors making less than $100 in others. I understand market forces, but market forces change and salaries do not. If I didn't love my job and like Manhattan, I would leave in a minute. I am starting to seriously consider other options. My salary is a joke compared to my peers in industry and other universities. 5) The proposal does nothing to address inequalities that are present within units because of reorganization, poor management decisions made years ago, etc. An Associate Professor in my unit makes 20% more than I, a full professor, do. I have 5X the number of publications, similar levels of grants, and teach more classes, but that faculty member got a huge increase some years ago from his friend who was the department chair. That pushed the person way past all other faculty members in the department. This is a huge issue and causes morale problems. These should be addressed, but are not being handled. 
3/2/2016 University Support StaffI have been employed here almost 27 years. I haven't had a raise in a decade. It looks like I will likely be retired before I see some change in salary. I have done everything that's ever been asked of me since I have been here, but never receive anything for it. I hope that this compensation plan works out and sooner than later.
3/3/2016 FacultyI am very supportive of the recommendations found in the Task Force report. The report is well-written. I am also very supportive of the recommendations regarding the regular, non-tenure track faculty. Individuals in those positions are a very significant element of the workforce at Kansas State, and making tools and enhancements available to those individuals is definitely a step in the right direction as they work hand-in-hand with tenure track faculty. While regular, non-tenure track faculty are not eligible for the rewards of tenure, the nature and work performed by regular, non-tenure track faculty should have some of the same compensation elements, and the recommendations found in the report created by the Compensation Task Force address those issues very well.
3/4/2016 AdministratorIt is striking that the Report does not explicitly call for a competitive increase in tuition (as opposed to new fees). Price multiplied by Quantity is, in the most simple terms available, the principal means for increasingly annually available net revenue on a scale which could meaningfully address the comparatively woeful compensation which obtains in so many quarters of the university, including but not limited to tenure-stream faculty. Stated differently, strategic enrollment management (SEM) is the far-and-away chief means through which Kansas State University--like any self-funding private or increasingly self-funding public university--will meet its thoroughly legitimate compensation goals. A faculty who seeks fair compensation is therefore a faculty who must engage in, and develop expertise in, strategic enrollment management. The Report states: K-State's academic programs "are very good bargains that students will pay a premium to access" (p. 15). But what is needed isn't so much premium pricing as plainly fair, adequate pricing. Moving from under-priced, formally subsidized tuition to fairly priced tuition has nothing to do with anyone paying a "premium." In lieu of much-needed extensive expert market research, one can easily imagine that K-State's optimal in-state price-level lies nominally below that set by the University of Kansas, our principal competitor and the only other national research university in our state. If they're G.M., we're Ford. If they're the University of Washington, we're Washington State University. The world is a little more complicated than this (think Chrysler and Wichita State), but I'm only presenting basics. Beyond this elementary focus on market position and pricing strategy at the in-state undergraduate level, there are many additional variables which, arrayed strategically, could result in the additional annually available net revenue needed to fund faculty salaries fairness as well as new faculty lines, new programs, improved graduate student stipends, and other needed investments. These variables include the mix of international students and--and here comes that word again--special premium pricing for students who are now lumped into the gross category of "out of state."  One could imagine, for example, a pricing schedule which provides a discount for KC Metro students, or, alternatively, and as I have heard a wise colleague intriguingly suggest, which extends discounts to the children of K-State alumni regardless of their residency. Or both, or neither, or extending price discounts to a key area of Texas, etc., etc. Many possibilities exist which not only address faculty and staff compensation, but which also portend a more diverse and more adequately prepared student population. If we can accept and adequately support students who have a realistic chance of success, we will also benefit from improved retention and graduation. Let me also underscore the need, at a land-grant university, for need-based scholarships (i.e., for discounting). All private institutions set their base tuition high enough to permit for "discounting," which is usually given in the form of "scholarships" but which are really just the manifestation of a stepped- or sliding-scale pricing structure designed to make the institution affordable to an economically stratified prospective student body. The justification is educational: we shape the student body to promote a kind of excellence in higher education which is only possible with an economically and in other ways diverse population of faculty, staff, and students. There are social and political reasons, relating to our democracy, which also demand that land-grant universities fulfill their historic missions. There is also, however, an economic reason for discounting, in that it permits a broadening of the market for prospective students. Does this broadening in effect constitute a redistribution of income from one student to another?  Yes. Is this controversial?  No. It is in fact standard operating procedure at all private and increasingly at self-supporting public universities. The alternatives are not attractive: open access to a resource-starved and hence mediocre university (which is a result easily obtained), or abandoning the land-grant mission in favor of providing higher education as segregated by social class, where only the well-to-do may benefit. The only road to fulfilling the actual land-grant mission of providing access-to-excellence is via SEM, which, quite necessarily, relies on tuition discounting. (As an aside, I would note that reliance on "fees" does not usually provide similar flexibility.) Does this mean that the Report's litany of "increased emphasis on fundraising for endowed faculty positions, leveraging athletics to generate revenue directed towards academics, SRO distributions, and new university and college fees" (p. 150), should be ignored?  Not a all. All of these strategies, and probably others in addition, are needed and should work in concert. But none of these come close to the significance of tuition increases and should not be regarded, even in sum, as adequate substitutes for much-needed tuition increases. This last point brings me to my conclusion. The most important strategy before the University is to work with fellow KBOR institutions via political lobbying and mobilization to wrest control of tuition-setting from the state legislature and return it to its rightful place in KBOR itself. Secondly, we must win approval from a majority of the KBOR for, not trifling annually percentage increases, but a significant one-time adjustment--call it a K-State 2025 adjustment--which brings our Manhattan campus price level to parity with KU's Lawrence campus equivalent. After we achieve this one-time adjustment, we can return to annual percentage adjustments regulated by what KU, the de facto price leader, is able to win. The market, ultimately, will regulate price increases, which is a basic conservative principle. Indeed, what I propose here is essentially a market-based, business model solution, which stands in contrast, say, to the proposals for tuition- and debt-free public higher education. If either of these were to become national policy, then the above would have to be rethought.
3/7/2016 FacultyI am glad to see that regularized instructors are included in this report. However, I am still concerned about addressing compression and inversion in the regularized instructor ranks. My base salary is $35,000 this year. A full Faculty Enhancement Award of $3,000 AND a 7.5% promotional raise (should these recommendations be implemented), would not bring my base salary to the level of the most recent instructor hires in my department. I have taught full time at K-State for 13 years. So, while I appreciate the efforts of the Task Force to recognize that K-State’s faculty salary problem effects regularized instructors as well as tenure-track faculty, it is important to note that the compression/inversion a few of us are feeling is severe and hindering our ability to keep up with costs of living. For example, I bought a house 7 years ago. With the economic changes in those years and no significant change in my salary, I am no longer able to make those mortgage payments and financially support a household on my own. K-State’s salary issue is an equity issue for faculty across the board, but it is also a quality of life issue for those of us at the lower end of the spectrum who are also experiencing compression/inversion. I share these details to give you a fuller view of how the larger conversation on salary effects some of us working full time in the teaching ranks. 
3/7/2016 FacultyI have three main responses to the task force recommendations: 1. Recent job candidates have laughed at the salaries we can offer them, and these newly minted Ph.D.s are being offered more dollars than current tenured professors earn. The compensation at all levels must be increased and inequalities must be overcome. 2. While merit increases are theoretically part of our current model, they are erratic and can penalize long-term research efforts. I support the recommendation for Block Salary adjustments. 3. The report observes, "at K-State, approximately 10% of instructional faculty are regular, non-tenure-track" and "they are truly deserving of equal consideration for salary increases as tenured and tenure-track faculty." I wholeheartedly support this consideration and hope the Task Force includes instructors as faculty in on-going conversations. Overall, I recognize that Kansas is experiencing hard times and hope that K-State administrators understand how negatively that affects faculty. While salaries are stagnant, cost of living is increasing, especially given the increased sales tax on necessities in Kansas and the high rent and house prices in Manhattan. My ability to conduct excellent research and provide quality education is severely impacted. I budget carefully to meet day-to-day costs--groceries, housing, transportation--and have little left over to make up for university failures to support faculty professionally. I can little afford research trips (only covered by underfunded competitive programs), conference travel (only partially covered by my home department), and technology (essential in today's 24-hour classroom environment and not covered in any formal way), much less savings for emergencies and retirement. Competitive salaries are essential for our faculty to achieve excellence in research and teaching, and salary compression and inversion have detrimental effects on morale at all levels. 
3/8/2016 FacultyIt is an improvement to recognize that regularized instructors in non-tenure track faculty positions need the same types of career advancement and salary increases as other workers. I’m a little confused, however, about the recommendation for a promotion salary increase of 7.5%. Why would one faculty rank earn less in promotion than another? If one rank earns 15% of their salary when promoted, the same standard should be applied to their colleagues. Regularized instructors, in general, focus on teaching. While we are a research institution, teaching is fundamental to the mission of the University, too. The higher level of education required for most tenure-line positions is reflected in the difference in salary between ranks; regularized instructors do not earn as much as TT professors. There's no need to emphasize rank by decreasing the percentage earned through promotion. When this question was posed to the task force, the following response from Brian Spooner was shared with me:  ~ The Task Force lobbied to "include non-TT faculty, as well, even though those expenditures in salary would not count in the movement toward peers" as outlined in the 2025 plan. (2025 seeks progress on faculty salaries but only salaries for tenured and tenure track faculty, as comparable salary data for instructional faculty do not exist.) Thus, the Task Force "argued to include non-TT faculty, as well, even though those expenditures in salary would not count in the movement toward peers."  ~ In identifying a percent increase, the Task Force "chose to recommend a value that would be significant, for example, about $5K (which would amount to 10% or more or the average instructor salary here of about $48-49K). [...] The Task Force then moved to 7.5% of the average (which, I'm guessing would be closer to 6K, now, and would increase as the average increases, over time)." Brian continues, "We wanted it to be significant, but accepted," adding, "You might recall that just 2 years ago, promotion to tenure and associate professor was 8% of the average salary and promotion to full professor was 11%."  While I agree with the first point that it is wise to include non-TT faculty in the efforts to improve faculty salaries (we are, afterall, faculty employees of the University who suffer from the same budgetary and economic challenges as everyone else), I question the rationale of the second point. First, trying to target a dollar amount increase using an average salary is problematic. It's an average, so many faculty fall below that 48 - 49K, and most of those people are in the Humanities. This, in effect, creates a systemic disadvantage to a specific demographic of workers. If the goal is to provide a dollar-amount increase for promotion, don't use a percentage-based system. Specify a dollar amount connected to promotional ranks. If a percentage-based system is preferred so that individuals get a dollar amount in relation to their current salary, make it an equal percentage for all. Yes, those in the Sciences and other colleges will still earn more, but at least the promotional pay increase is fair across the board. And by across the board, I assert, means across rank. Promotion is a reflection of a person's performance at the job they are hired to do. If someone does well at their job, they should earn a promotion. The difference in positions is already reflected in the salary earned, so there's no need to reward an individual less because their job has different objectives. An instructor who earns a 15% increase through promotion still gets less for that promotion than a TT-faculty who earns the same. If the University want to demonstrate its consideration for its students and support the faculty who interact with and teach the most students, it needs to step up and recognize the inequities that exist. Providing a promotional structure with financial compensation is one step in the right direct. But don't perpetuate the inequity in the new system by assuming lower ranking faculty deserve less for their dedication and hard work. While we may not be publishing research, we are producing undergraduates at a very high rate and each of those students represents KSU to the world at large.
3/9/2016 FacultyRegularized instructors are faculty and should have their salary needs addressed in percentages consistent with other faculty positions.
3/14/2016 FacultyEchoing the Task Force recommendations, faculty salaries must increase on par with or even exceed our peer institutions to retain excellent, full-time regular faculty and to position the University to be a top-25 public university by 2025. However, as recommended by the Task Force, internal reallocation is not sustainable as it shall decrease the percentage of tenure and tenure-track faculty. As a contingent faculty member, I recognize the value of having adjunct faculty for a neoliberal, corporate-minded university; however, such employment is ultimately untenable, given the burden of precarity it places on the adjunct faculty member and the lack of institutional memory upon which students can rely. That is, without tenure/tenure-track and regular, non–tenure-track faculty upon whom students can count to be here, at this University, morale and educational innovation will surely decrease. Faculty are the heart of the University's research and teaching mission. Well compensated faculty equal happy workers. Happy workers engage more with their places of employment. Identifying creative revenue streams such as partnering with athletics and private and corporate donors for endowed professorships is one viable solution. However, as a public institution, our state and federal governments must ultimately reinvest in public education. University administrators and lobbyists must enjoin our government to do so!
3/18/2016 Other

Basic yearly living expenses for myself and my daughter:  $27,060
Base salary (full time) before taxes, etc.:  <$38,000
Number of years teaching at KSU: 31
Number of awards my students have won since 1986, incl 2015: 42/90 (1st, 2nd, 3rd places)
Number of students I teach per year on average: 165
Number of students taught in 31 years, approx.: 4000+
Number of days absent from class in 31 years: <5
Number of days of missed office hours in 31 years: <5
Number of students who have contested grades in 31 years: 1
Number of years I have used KSU provided insurance: 18/31
Number of extra dollars I may earn to avoid conflict of interest: <$10,000 gross
Number of degrees I hold: One graduate degree, two undergrad degrees, one are of specialization in my grad degree (the area in which I teach).
These numbers tell how highly KSU values my work.

4/6/2016 FacultyWhy don't non-tenure track faculty not have pay increase scale when we are promoted? Teaching Assistant Professors, Teaching Associate Professors, and Teaching Professors make the same salary.
4/6/2016 AdministratorMy only concern is the block salary adjustment. Data indicate that full profs are the furthest behind peers and a block adjustment will not take the issue into consideration. Do the math.
4/6/2016 Unclassified ProfessionalI think the task force did an excellent job of evaluating the current status and finding reasonable recommendations. I'm afraid that this is just another smoke screen to create delays so this administration will never have to do their jobs. Keep 'em busy with busy work.
4/6/2016 Unclassified ProfessionalThe task force to raise compensation for faculty is a great idea, but we as a University need to move as a unit, especially during the time of transition. A perfect example is during the open forum for Interim CIO/Vice Provost for ITS, many IT staff felt that they were underpaid, retention was an issue, and morale is generally low, but they were still being ask to give more. That being said, staff compensation needs to be involved in talks with the task force. Only then, will we see improvements in all areas of the University and not only to our faculty. Unifying the University should be a priority and making sure we appreciate each others hard-work.
4/6/2016FacultyWhen I interviewed at KSU in December 2014, I was surprised to learn how small the contribution from the employer to the employee's retirement, 8.5% (I come from a different university, who is listed as a peer university, who has a 11% contribution). The other comment I will make is my previous employer gave other benefits during the 2009-2012 time frame (when merit raises did not exist). These additional benefits included: free/reduced prices for tickets to athletic events, performing arts, reduced prices for noon time fitness programs, didn't increase parking rates, etc. 
4/6/2016Unclassified ProfessionalOver at least the last 7 years, professional staff have very little (if any) attention regarding salary. Faculty have access to promotion/tenure raises, which are substantial increases, and also to the Faculty Enhancement Funds. While I certainly value the contributions of faculty, the fact remains that those of us providing professional services also provide significant contributions to the University and have had no way to address those, either through merit or targeted enhancement funds. We continue to have no voice in our needs or concerns about our salaries not being competitive, other than the HCS sham that is currently labeled "Total Rewards". Faculty Senate is a complete joke in "representing" unclassified professional staff. There is no money at this point for any raises supposedly, and yet the promotion/tenure and faculty enhancements programs continue. I appreciate that faculty continue to push for additional compensation since it obviously gets them attention. It is demoralizing that the other 2/3 of the University workforce (including USS staff) are ignored. I consider this report another indication that my work here has no value, since I am not a member of the faculty.
4/6/2016 FacultyI strongly support the Task Force's recommendations, but given the niggardly attitude toward higher education funding by our right-wing legislature and governor--as well as the restrictions they've placed on tuition increases--I doubt that much if any of these can come to pass. As a member of the KSU faculty for 25 years--and a full professor since 1995--I've seen the same problems with inadequate salary and compensation every year, and it has grown monotonously depressing.
4/6/2016FacultyI am lucky to be a full professor and endowed chair. Despite a high level of productivity and superb annual performance reviews, I have not had a merit raise or even cost of living raise in 3 or 4 years. I am periodically contacted by other universities to see if I am willing to consider another position elsewhere. I would like my own university to reward me for my productivity. Otherwise, I wonder why I submit extensive documentation of my productivity annually to the department and college. The compression in salaries is disturbing. We are hiring ABDs with salaries the make me wonder about any sense of equity.
4/6/2016 University Support StaffFaculty have had increases to compensation more recently than others on campus. This is unfair and is creating a divide. If Administration can not increase salaries for unclassified professionals and USS, they have no business doing it for Faculty.
4/6/2016 Unclassified ProfessionalMy gut feeling is too little, too late. I used to feel that the administration really cared about me, but after 10 years of working hard, producing a lot, and being a "team player" I have received little acknowledgment nor pay adjustments. Your plan proposes that I continue to wait. How much longer?  Remaining upbeat and supportive in a time when long-term "regular" guys get no rewards but new administrative positions with high salaries are created at an accelerated rate is a lot to ask of K-State "family" members. I have come to accept there is no K-State family. Maybe if you are an administrator you believe this, but if you are a little guy doing great things to keep the university functioning, you get no respect as Rodney Dangerfield used to say. We have been promised pay increases beyond the bare minimum ever since I arrived 10 years ago. Little, if anything, has been done to help Unclassified Professionals who often contribute as much, or more, than regular teaching faculty. For the administration to expect pay increases based on annual evaluations and merit is not a fair way to proceed in my opinion based on my own experiences. To proceed with this type of system presumes that those evaluations are true, accurate and relevant. Many supervisors routinely rank their supervisees lower than the supervisor next door in a different area of the same college. I do not believe that this is fair and to continue a practice that bases pay raises solely on annual evaluations is a travesty. I also doubt that my Dept. Heads and/or Deans really know what their non-tenure track faculty do on a day-to-day basis nor how well they do it (not always reflected in a vague, and sometimes jaded, annual evaluation). To rely on anyone to award pay raises without even interviewing the employee and learning all that they do is not the way to proceed in my opinion. Also, to make an employee pay to park at their place of business is not good business in my opinion. That practice is like telling your family members, "I own this house and you kids will have to pay me so much this year and more every year you live in my house in order to park in the driveway or garage. And, by the way, your allowance won't be increasing this year nor every year you live in my house."  If this is supposed to bring family members closer together and build support and morale, it doesn't work. Don't get me wrong--I love what I do. But one-way love without recognition nor support, can't sustain a relationship forever.
4/6/2016 FacultySalaries for faculty in general, but particularly for associate professors, are deplorable! There are now junior faculty who is earning more than tenured faculty. This needs to change if the administration is serious about bringing K-State to compete with the best state universities in the nation. By the way, administrators are getting big salary increases every year, which emphasizes the huge disparities between faculty members and administrators. This unbalanced situation goes against fostering a productive and desirable environment at K-State. Leaving it as it is will not attract and retain high-performing faculty. 
4/6/2016 FacultyWell, I don't know what to think. We have a provost who is trying to bail out, a president who beat her to the punch, and a lot of dean turnover. These folks, who are amongst the highest paid people here, are leaving for positions that invariably pay more. The people who grouse the most about pay and leave for more pay tend to be the people who are already paid the most (STEM people, business, etc.). What about some equity across the campus? It is pretty discouraging when someone who makes a quarter of a million dollars is bitching about how he could make more money someplace else, while I am plugging along here at around $85,000, still realizing that many colleagues are making a lot less than I am. It is similar to a skinny person complaining about being too fat in front of someone who is obese. Also, I took a good sized pay cut this year because I had an administrative stipend that was discontinued. The area I was directing was dismantled because the people I was supervising moved elsewhere (same old story) and the positions were reallocated to other "more critical" areas, and here I am trying to cover what four people were doing, PLUS taking a big walloping pay cut. People are complaining because the services those people were doing have been discontinued (or attempted in a haphazard fashion by just me). So it is hard to talk about increasing salaries when I have had a big pay cut and more work piled on, and I am already in an area that is on the lower end of the pay scale. So... I'm very sorry that the really highly paid people are leaving for more money and we should do something about that while the rest of us hope that we get some crumbs.
4/6/2016 FacultyUnlike what you have reported that faculty salaries have risen since 2012, they have actually decreased if you take into account the increases in health insurance, parking, cost of living, inflation and other expenses. A 0.5% increase during that time period is an actual decrease in salary.
4/6/2016 FacultySalary is a huge issue. The newly hired assistant professors only make about $2,000 less than me. As a result, I spent numerous hours preparing resumes, cover letters, emails, etc. with the intention of leaving. I didn't get any offers, so I am still here. After 15 years of K-State constantly being at the bottom of all salaries, I have lost faith in this institutions ability to adequately compensate me. I am searching for a second job and hopefully will become a two job person in the near future. I imagine that I will be less productive here. I enjoy my work, but it just doesn't pay enough to support my family. Hopefully the new admin will put faculty salaries as a priority instead of increasing the number of administration positions and the number of unpaid buildings. Personally, I believe that Pres. Shultz and his administration dug us into a huge financial hole and he is fortunate to leave before all of the consequences of his decisions truly manifest themselves. I will always respect his ability to side step issues and blame others, but it didn't fool me. Thus, the need for a second job. I believe that the report does not emphasize enough the negative effects of a low salary on both morale and the ability to hire and retain faculty. 
4/6/2016 FacultySalaries (faculty and staff) here at K-State are abysmal. Everyone knows that retaining good faculty is dependent upon fair/reasonable salaries (compared to peer institutions). It needs to be reinforced, however, that the best way to get a salary increase is to secure a job offer from another institution. It take a hell of a lot of time away from our current jobs to apply for a position at another institution. Why can't the power-that-be see how much more productive things would be (in the long run) if faculty AND staff were paid a more reasonable salary (competitive with peer institutions). Why should it be acceptable for salaries at K-State to be consistently at the bottom of the list?
4/6/2016 Unclassified Professional1. An important component that I did not see addressed was that Human Capital Services has to be on board with this. Currently they are not involved with faculty recruitment or negotiations which in turn allows faculty and administrators to be recruited and paid better than others at the university. With the new rankings and achievements of the university, are the peer institutions still correct?  Overall, HCS is preventing departments from paying salaries that they have deemed are not in-line with these peer institutions and are using a 50% mean as a maximum for salary ranges, making us a mediocre university, in my opinion. There is not the concept in that area that to recruit a faculty and staff for a top-50 institution, that we have to pay better than a median wage. This is what your report indicates as well, only for 9-month tenure-track faculty. Where do the 12-month tenure-track faculty fit in? 2. I appreciate that the task force recognizes and addresses that the current method of fund-reallocation only serves to create additional problems in the future. Perhaps a review of the programs offered here should be completed and more strategic. We all believe that our programs are unique and incredibly important to the University. However, we are a land-grant institution, founded on agriculture and research. KU offers a strong business and leadership program. Emporia State is the "teaching" college. Perhaps returning to our roots would be best for us to reach our 2025 goals.
4/6/2016 FacultyIt's not that complicated; allocate more money to salaries if you want to retain good people and attract new talent. Facilities are important, but students attend University based on the need for instruction which must be facilitated and delivered by PEOPLE. Administration talks about the importance of "human capital" but does not allocate resources based on that priority.
4/6/2016 AdministratorI agree with the reasoning to the report. The ideas for fees are plausible to help fund salary increases. Internal allocations are not sustainable. More flexibility on targeted enhancements would be a plus, particularly to include non tenure-track faculty. The committee did a good job gathering and summarizing the data and made a good effort on finding ways to increase salaries in a very difficult budget environment. Though salaries are important considerations for faculty recruitment and retention, the current political environment and resulting policies in KS that are not budget related may also pose some challenges in recruiting top people to the state.
4/7/2016 FacultyIt's nice to make a report, but I never saw anything come out of the last one. I would like the administration to actually do something instead of keep expanding their departments with high paid individuals while they are out looking for new jobs. As a K-Stater from birth, I am very disappointed in the how the university is run. We need someone who actually cares about K-State and isn't just stopping by for a little while until the next, better in their mind job comes around. Find a way to pay us, that's why you get paid the big bucks, you have to make hard decisions.
4/7/2016 FacultyI was not sure how the block grants would work. I understand the idea, but not how it would be executed. Is the idea that there would be very few groups of salary levels or many groups of salary levels?  Is the intention to increase lower salaries more than the higher salaries?  How does this respect the legitimate (and competitive) salary differences that exist between different disciplines?  If the intention is to provide greater increases for lower salaries than higher salaries, won't this exacerbate some of the compression issues we face?
4/13/2016 FacultyI have followed this issue carefully and read the report with great interest. I endorse its inclusion of non-tenure track faculty wholeheartedly. It is more difficult to quantify benchmarks for salary improvement in relation to peer institutions, and that's indicative of how the profession at large refuses to consider ntt faculty as essential contributors to university and college missions. I have a suggestion: benchmark the full-time ntt salaries against the tt faculty salaries within our institution. I do not know whether the same percentages should apply (salaries to exceed lowest 1/3 of tt, etc), but this general approach could allow actual benchmarks to help measure increases, as opposed to more vague "enhancement." Moreover, the problem of salary inversion is acute at this rank (at least in the units I'm most familiar with) so especial care should be given to addressing inequities that result from hiring new instructors at salaries far above those of existing instructors. The task force has correctly indicated the danger of raises through cannibalistic internal reallocation, though I am not certain I agree that this process should never be used (i.e., that no raises are always better than this). However, I entirely applaud the clear call for NEW revenue streams since the legislature can be counted on to continue to dismantle the university through fiscal cuts. Creative new sources, such as taxing athletic and other donations, MUST be identified and vigorously pursued. I have another suggestion as well. Raises must be prioritized in regards to other campus pursuits, rather than remaining isolated as something "critical but unattainable," which has been the attitude for many years. (Faculty salary problems have been viewed as too big to succeed). So other pursuits of 2025, or whatever follows it with the change of central admin, should be tied to faculty salary increases. For example, no new central administrative positions can be created until we reach the 2025 salary benchmarks. A clear sign like this from central administration would prevent misguided diversions of scarce resources such as the recent proposal to create a new director of advising. It is important that all administrators recognize faculty salary enhancement as a true priority for the university which all should work to achieve.
4/13/2016 FacultyI thank the university leaders for their efforts on behalf of faculty to make pay more equitable and in line with peers. However, the fact remains that many of us continue to be significantly underpaid, and the problem is even worse among the regularized instructors and term instructors who increasingly teach our lower-level courses. To serve our students, our mission, and our state it is crucial that we compensate teachers appropriately and provide professional development for all in instruction roles. I am concerned that the focus appears to be on administrators/administration, athletics, and buildings, judging from the visible traces on campus and in the news.
4/13/2016 FacultyI simply want to take a moment to reiterate the importance of focusing on salaries at a number of levels. Plans are underway, I know, to increase the stipends of GTAs in the humanities, especially in the English department. As you know, some of the GTAs in the English department are currently living below the poverty level and qualify for (and must use) food stamps. This is an appalling situation of which we should be, frankly, embarrassed. Our low stipend means that we are not able to attract or retain the most qualified graduate students and GTAs. This problem impacts nearly all students at KSU, as GTAs teach ENGL 100 and 200, both required courses for graduation. As we know, having a strong and qualified teacher in introductory classes increases the probability of retention of first and second year students. The stronger our GTAs in such courses, the stronger our student population. Additionally, while a focus on tenure-track faculty salaries is essential, we must not forget our non-tenure track regularized instructors. These are faculty members who are unable to pay their mortgages because their current salaries hover around $30,000 (pre-tax). This low pay is often the result of a lack of COLA raises and merit pay. Again, these are people who teach primarily undergraduate courses and therefore directly contribute to our ability to retain strong students. Additionally, as we are an educational institution, we want to make sure that our focus is always on the quality of our teachers. Paying them a living wage is the very least that we can do to help attract and retain the best teachers we possibly can. Finally, while the salaries for our most recent hires are somewhat competitive (although certainly not competitive enough to reach our 2025 goals), salary inversion is a serious problem at the faculty level. What we need is not lower salaries for those coming in to K-State, but fair and equitable salaries for those who have devoted years of their lives to this institution. Again, if we hope to reach our 2025 goals of becoming a top research institution, we need to be able to attract and retain the best faculty members. Retention of top faculty members, especially given the threat of campus carry, is a real problem. It's difficult for many of us to make a case to stay at the school we love when we feel our lives may be in danger as a result of an influx of untrained people with unregulated weapons; it's even more difficult when we see how much less we're making than our new colleagues or our peers at other institutions. If K-State is, indeed, a family, we need to make sure that we take care of all of its members, not simply those at the most prominent positions. 
4/13/2016 FacultyPermanent instructors currently have no way of receiving cost of living raises. These instructors are critical to both the English department and our TESOL classes, teaching core classes such as first year writing, and working diligently with large numbers of students. These instructors struggle to stay at K-State due to salary compression and inversion, and many are looking to leave as soon as possible. High turnover in these departments negatively affects our students. We MUST find a way to provide cost of living raises to permanent instructors. Additionally, salaries for pre-tenure faculty in Arts and Sciences are often so low that faculty cannot afford to live alone before achieving tenure, forcing faculty to rent or find roommates. Housing in Manhattan is among the most expensive of the Big Twelve schools, even as our salaries remain at the bottom range for peer institutions. Salaries must consider cost of living for faculty in Arts and Sciences.
4/13/2016 FacultyDealing with instructor and faculty salary inversion is critical to this university. I work with a few employees who work harder than all of their peers but, because they were hired many years ago, earn up to $20,000 less. Asking them to apply for and get jobs in order to negotiate salaries is essentially asking them both to lie (about wanting other jobs) and asking them to leave K-State. Faculty pay is way below average for a "high research" Carnegie status university. The Chronicle of Higher Education suggests my salary is, in fact, $12,000 below average of a professor of my rank. This is certainly not acceptable for a university that is trying to attain research 1 status.