I was approached by someone from an initiative called San Diego County Trees…(a project) extolling the benefits of urban trees. I just spent time on the website, where the coolest feature is an interactive map of the whole county showing very specific tree locations and information, including quantified benefits…(like) carbon sequestration, water retention, energy saved, and air pollutants reduced.
Wow! Look at that image…millions of dollars in savings, water conservation, improved air quality. That is impressive.
Some more facts include, “the net cooling effect of a young, healthy tree is equivalent to ten room-size air conditioners operating 20 hours a day,” and the energy savings of planting a tree on the sunny side of your house (3% after 5 years, 12% after 15 years).
It began with a frustrated blogpost by a distinguished mathematician. Tim Gowers and his colleagues had been grumbling among themselves for several years about the rising costs of academic journals.
They, like many other academics, were upset that the work produced by their peers, and funded largely by taxpayers, sat behind the paywalls of private publishing houses that charged UK universities hundreds of millions of pounds a year for the privilege of access.
So, in January this year, Gowers wrote an article on his blog declaring that he would henceforth decline to submit to or review papers for any academic journal published by Elsevier, the largest publisher of scientific journals in the world.
He was not expecting what happened next. Thousands of people read the post and hundreds left supportive comments. Within a day, one of his readers had set up a website, The Cost of Knowledge, which allowed academics to register their protest against Elsevier.
The site now has almost 9,000 signatories, all of whom have committed themselves to refuse to either peer review, submit to or undertake editorial work for Elsevier journals. “I wasn’t expecting it to make such a splash,” says Gowers. “At first I was taken aback by how quickly this thing blew up.”
I bet you’re thinking this is a no-brainer and the coaches win by far. Not so fast, the medical departments at colleges rake in money for patient care and consulting.
Here is a breakdown for the UC system in California which includes Berkeley, UCLA, and San Francisco with a combined 100+ Nobel Laureates:
Coach – $2.4 million - Jeff Tedford (Berekeley)
Coach – $2.1 million - Ben Howland (UCLA)
Prof. – $2.0 million - Ronald Busuttil (UCLA)
Coach – $1.9 million - Mike Montgomery (Berkeley)
Prof. – $1.8 million - Khalil Tabsh (UCLA)
Prof. – $1.5 million - Anthony Azakie (UCSF)
Prof. – $1.5 million - Philip Leboit (UCSF)
Prof. – $1.5 million - Timothy McCalmont (UCSF)
Prof. – $1.4 million - Richard Shemin (UCLA)
Coach – $1.2 million - Rick Neuheisel (UCLA)
The coaches hold four of the ten spots. The disparity in pay between the two groups isn’t all that great either. Average of the top 10 has the professors earning $1.6 million and the coaches earning $1.9 million.
If you keep going, the next fifteen are all on the healthcare side with twelve professors and three health executives. Of the top 100 they take up 84 spots, with only fourteen non-healthcare salaries.
It’s also worth noting that the next coaches on the list are Norm Chow (UCLA) at #95, and Joanne Boyle (Berkeley) at #119.
I have to admit the numbers are pretty shocking. The common understanding is that professors make little money, while doctors make good money. Combine the two and it’s a gold mine.
One that doesn’t pull money from the schools themselves. Like the coaches they are largely paid with the money they pull in. In the world of college academics this is called an “auxiliary program” (thanks Norman), and the opposite is normally true. These programs (sports, healthcare) funnel money, prestige, and students to the schools.
A final note, these salaries are determined by combining each persons base pay with their incentives and bonuses. For the coaches this means winning, playoffs, and championships. For the health professors it means seeing patients and receiving awards for their research.
Take out this extra pay and not one in the top 10 earns above $317,000 in base pay. Many of those lower on the list have a set base pay of $500,000 and $800,000.
Interesting, to say the least, and I hope I informed your opinion of college salaries.