Letter: Will UI faculty protest pay raises?

Regarding the June 23 story “UI puts nearly $5 million toward faculty pay raises”:

In 2015, hundreds of people gathered in Iowa City to protest the hiring of Bruce Harreld as the University of Iowa’s new president. Numbered among those protesters were professors from the University of Iowa, some holding signs that read, “No Confidence.”

Is another series of protests from the university faculty coming soon? I wait with bated breath to read about the next round of professorial protests against Harreld. It seems imprudent for Harreld to raise faculty salaries considering the budgetary shortfalls and financial woes facing the university. He has approved a nearly $5 million increase for faculty salaries, while at the same time bemoaning the fact that the university is faced with nearly $10 million in cuts. Tuition is to be raised another 5 percent for the upcoming school year with more and larger tuition hikes forecast for the foreseeable future.

I have no quarrel with paying people a decent wage, but it seems disingenuous to give pay raises to a faculty whose average annual salary is over $135,000. Factoring in cost of living, UI professors fare better than their counterparts at institutions like UCLA or the University of Wisconsin.

I will happily join the university faculty when they decide to march to the president’s office. Perhaps they’ll be carrying signs that read, “Confidence is Growing!” I will be chaining myself to his desk chanting, “Hey, hey ... ho, ho, President Harreld has got to go!”

Scott Reittinger

Ely

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