Cabrini’s faculty salaries near bottom of the barrel

By Richard Magda
May 2, 2002

Information obtained from The American Association of University Professors.

Salaries for newly hired assistant professors are near the bottom of the barrel nationally. The average salary of assistant professors here is $31,000, putting Cabrini at a 4 on a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 being the best. These figures are from the annual salary survey of faculty nationwide.

Cabrini hires these new assistant professors with the expectation that they have completed the Ph.D. degree and have some teaching experience with the pay of $31,000. In contrast, the average starting salary of college graduates with only a B.A. and no experience in 2001 was $30,338 for psychology graduates and $40,577 for economics/finance graduates, according to the National Association of Colleges and Employers.

According to The American Association of University Professors, the average faculty pay nationwide rose by 3.8 percent in 2001-2. This increase is the largest in 11 years.

Trying to keep up with the national average, the administration and faculty of Cabrini, a category II b or Baccalaureate institution, are working together to improve weak areas. According to the AAUP report, professors average $61, 100, associate professors average $51, 000, assistant professors average $39, 000 and instructors average $31, 100 per year at Cabrini.

While experts predict a drop in average faculty salary because of recent economic thresholds, “at the moment there is absolutely no indication that Cabrini will drop below with 3.8 percent increase,” Dr. Margaret McGuinness said. “We are still negotiating and we are trying to improve our rank among the II b schools. One of the goals for the senate and administration over the next several years is to bring the faculty salary averages higher in the rankings.”

According to the report, the average salary for all full-time faculty members in 2001-2 escalated to $62, 895. That average includes all institutions with the exception of medical schools. The faculty salary averages at Cabrini fall below the average of other level II b institutions in Pennsylvania. Averaging the faculty salaries of Haverford College, Gwenydd-Mercy College and Neumann College, three local II b institutions, professors earn $69,400, associate professors earn $55,700, assistant professors make $45, 600 and lecturers average $38,300 per year. Cabrini is nearest the average in the associate professors category, falling below by $4,700. Professors at Cabrini, however, make $8, 400 less on average than professors at the three local colleges, and instructors about $7,000 less.

“Considering all things reasonable, in the different ranks of salary we are in a different position,” Chairman of the psychology department Dr. Anthony Tomasco said. “The assistant professor and professor ranks are not near the average now, but President Iadarola and the administration are working to raise the ranking.”

Within the II b category, the AAUP places schools into four percentiles based on average salaries of professors, associate professors, assistant professors and lecturers. According to the AAUP, the percentile rankings are as follows: 1+ includes institutions in the 95th percentile, 1 is composed of 80th percentile institutions, 2 is where 60th percentile institutions are placed; 3 is the 40th percentile schools and 4 contains the 20th percentile schools.

“The goal is to be in the 1+, 1 or 2 percentiles,” Tomasco said. “They are above average and that is what we are working towards.”

Although Cabrini’s faculty salary averages are below the 2001-2 average, comparing the numbers of a relatively new school with those of established schools. As with any mean of figures, there is a margin of error and overlooked factors that affect the final averages.

“The goal of the plan for the future is to put us in a high rank among the II b schools,” McGuinness said. “But it’s tricky. Sometimes comparisons aren’t fair to make.”

Regardless of what the numbers say now, the administration of Cabrini are working towards a more comparable faculty salary average in the years to come. Officials have not put a time limit on the process, but they expect to take positive steps towards the goal each year.

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Richard Magda

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