Special salary allocation for humanities has been a ‘shared process’

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Salaries in fiscal year 2013-14 for tenured and tenure-eligible faculty in the humanities are getting special attention and dollars from the Iowa State administration.

President Steven Leath, provost Jonathan Wickert and Liberal Arts and Sciences dean Beate Schmittmann have allocated $450,000, collectively, toward humanities salaries and benefits. The allocations, which are permanent, are intended to bring the average salaries of tenured and tenure-track Iowa State humanities faculty closer to salaries of their peers at other institutions.

Of the $450,000 allocated, $340,000 are direct salary dollars. The university is contributing $250,000, while LAS is providing the remaining $200,000.

The humanities comprise six departments – English, the Greenlee School of Journalism and Communication, history, music and theatre, philosophy and religious studies, and world languages and cultures.

Average salaries of tenured and tenure-track faculty in these departments are significantly below peer averages; in some cases, more than 20 percent below.

Schmittmann said faculty representatives and department chairs in the humanities have long advocated for a systematic way to address the salary gap with their peers, and she shared these concerns with university leaders. She thanked president Leath and senior vice president and provost Jonathan Wickert for making the initiative possible.

Schmittmann noted that the additional salary funds will not be used for across-the-board increases. "This is an opportunity to show how much we value our most effective faculty – the productive scholars, the engaged teachers and the faculty who strengthen our community through their service."

She explained that the dean’s office worked closely with the humanities department chairs to determine salary increments for individual faculty. “Despite the fact that we were on a tight timeline and some chairs were traveling, all were able to provide detailed input. This has truly been a shared process, involving faculty, the LAS Representative Assembly, the humanities chairs, the provost, the president and the LAS dean’s office.”

"The significance of the humanities salary allocation is tremendous, since it addresses both the salary compression [salary differences between faculty ranks] and the peer institution comparison issues," said Heimir Geirsson, incoming chair of the Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies. "We still lag behind our peers, so there is still some work to be done. However, having the humanities recognized in this way means a lot."

– LAS Communications Office and Inside Iowa State.

For more information, see http://www.inside.iastate.edu/article/2013/06/06/humanities


About Liberal Arts and Sciences The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences is a world-class learning and research community. Iowa State’s most academically diverse college, LAS educates students to become global citizens, providing rigorous academic programs in the sciences, humanities and social sciences within a supportive personalized learning environment. College faculty design new materials, unravel biological structures, care for the environment, and explore social and behavioral issues. From fundamental research to technology transfer and artistic expression, the college supports people in Iowa and around the world.

NEWS RELEASE College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, Iowa State University

Contact: Steve Jones, Liberal Arts & Sciences Communication, (515) 294-0461, jones@iastate.edu