When San Diego State University approved last July that its new president would make $100,000 more than his predecessor — even in the face of cuts to higher education — many students were rightfully angry. But while the California State University system’s Jan. 25 decision to cap its presidents’ earnings at 10 percent of their predecessors was welcomed by many, it is is not the answer for the University of California.
Chancellors should by no means be given outrageous salary packages anytime soon. However, an executive pay cap like the one implemented in the CSU could constrain UC campus administrations that may have different needs in the future.
Our university system must remain flexible in these trying economic times. Stifling the system’s ability to attract and retain qualified administrators — with many today taking on more responsibilities than they had in the past — will not help the UC keep its competitive edge as a world-class research institution.