A Review of Merit Pay in American Colleges and Universities
American colleges and universities employ an impressive number of people in a wide-range of occupations. While universities have a number of goals and interests, the general assumption among most individuals is that universities have the sole purpose of teaching students and preparing them for success in the world. Given this line of thinking, one would be led to believe that professors and other academic instructors hold the majority of positions within an institution, but this would be incorrect. While the faculty do serve a critical function, their service to the students would not be possible without the various support services that exist throughout a college campus. To ensure these services are set up and provide the resources necessary to ensure the university is successful in its mission, colleges require a large number of employees, all working under unique job titles and classifications, to take on the responsibilities that come with working in an industry that generated more than $124 billion in 2001 alone (Lowenstein, 2001). A review of the human resources’ website of a college or university shows the diversity of jobs and positions within a university. These positions range from the seemingly obscure accountant, office manager, or plumber, to the traditional academic advisor, professor, and higher-level administration. As different as these positions may appear, they typically can be
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He uses strong diction as he addresses how colleges are increasingly becoming “conventional bureaucracies” because behind every college program is a need for growth (Blank 263). This need he argues is how connections between colleges and outside companies begin to formulate as colleges develop “employment favoring tactics” (263). Thus colleges build up their clientele to help advertise such well known business corporations and offices to advertise “better jobs.” Blank continues by providing the most optimistic statistical evidence which “envision a 14.8 percent slice of 1975 job market, while they bring 31 percent of 18 to 24-year old age into college” (263). This estimates to about 10,664,000 students in college, “therefore, even if every one of the so-called professional and technical jobs were indeed reserved for them (which is itself patently impossible), the number of job openings would still be inadequate” (263). These facts introduce and support the idea that receiving a college degree is not to be associated with the key to “reserving a better job”. The details and numbers build an appeal to logos and impress upon the reader that this is a problem worth discussing, the statistics prove that although there are many students in college, not everyone will receive a job as the number of job openings are
To Hayes the failure of meritocracy comes from its focus on equality of opportunity over equality of outcome. Thus, as inequality escalated, the meritocracy ended up becoming so entrenched and isolated that it is no longer even much of a meritocracy. Hayes cites his elite NYC alma mater, Hunter College High School, as a prime example. The only admissions requirement is passing its entrance exam, yet the percentage students from minority and low income backgrounds has been steadily declining due to the expensive test taking prep courses that more affluent students can afford. Meanwhile the increasingly wealthy “meritocratic elites” isolate themselves from the rest of us in the 99% by living and traveling privately – in gated communities, exclusive clubs and resorts, corporate jets, etc., blaming the masses rather than themselves for societal woes.
Two professors of different backgrounds, Mike Rose of California, and Gerald Graff, of Illinois, discuss the problems college students face today in America. Though similar in slight variations, both professors view the problem in different regards and prepare solutions that solve what they feel to be the heart of this academic problem.
The concerns and needs of college workers have seemed to have been overlooked by Duke University. The college operates in a bureaucratic sense. Much in the same way the government is more concerned with process and procedures at the expense of efficiency or common
College is viewed many ways in the eyes of society. Menand expresses these views in three theories. Theory 1 is based on a meritocratic belief, Theory 2 is democratic, and Theory 3 is vocational. College has evolved over the years. At the start of universities only white males were able to enroll. Over the years this has changed drastically. From the nineteen-sixties to the nineteen-nineties, women and citizens of any race or ethnicity could enroll in a university. Theories of many people have been brought up as to why we have college.
Since Fall 2007 students have been going back to school with the goal of obtaining employment (Mullin, 2011). Mullin and Phillippe (2013) describe community colleges as “engines for economic development” (p.7), providing examples of workforce retaining when major companies leave the community and pre-training in anticipation of other larger employers. The unique position these colleges are in indicates a demand to stay connected to the needs of the community, maintaining partnerships with political and business stakeholders to continue to energize or in other ways revitalize the community. Research supports the sentiment that more education is directly related to more pay (Mullen, 2011) however, it does not exist in the stair-stepped manner that many may assume. Depending on the industry, credentials, and associate degrees may be more cost effective with increased earning potential (Mullen & Phillippe, 2013, p.7). Leadership needs to understand forces outside of the community to anticipate student and community
The core goal of Villanova University, in essence any university, is to cheaply produce critical thinkers while making money at the same time. Unfortunately for students, this process is not in their favor. In an increasingly capitalistic society, universities have gradually evolved into businesses. An example of this “corporatization of the academy” is the adjunct professor. Through no fault of their own, adjuncts have become pawns in a money making process which inevitably harms the students by violating their freedom and reason.
The increasing presence and responsibilities of university administrators place them as important agents in the competition for authority on faculty hiring practices. Administrators are in some ways positioned hierarchically above professors in terms of financial decision-making in the academic field, but professors are also typically given autonomy to conduct faculty searches as appropriate for their department. In cases like Brown University and many other large American universities, administrators may have final say over whether a faculty hiring can occur, but rarely have authority to select (or even veto) candidates. Students, undergraduate and graduate, are also agents, but are likely to have the least amount of power in this struggle. As such, in this particular analysis, the professorial class within the academic field is of particular
College campuses function as a collective organization, meaning that all of the offices and departments play an integral role in making the college experience great. The departments need to work together to guide students in matters such as financial aid, class registration, student accounts, and so many more. For example, if a new student were to contact the CONNECTIONs Orientation office and ask about their housing, the department secretary should either know how to answer the question, or know who to connect the student with. The current issue that we are finding on campus is that offices aren’t working together. Students are being directed to a different office, each time being told that the answer will be at the following office, and these types of experiences can make or break whether a student wants to come back to Kutztown University. Organizational structure and connectedness are necessary to avoid a dysfunctional campus environment.
However, American institutions were only able to use tuition to cover 44% of operating costs in 2012 (Han, 2014). This chapter’s study was performed at a university challenged by an enormous budget cut and one of the lowest tuition rates in the nation. Furthermore, the proportion of international students outpaces the national average by 2% (Institute of International Education, 2016). Yet, administration has not made improved retention and recruitment of international students a priority in fixing the situation. Rather, the university has decided to cut costs and faculty positions to solve the issue. This may also be the case at many other institutions facing budget issues. However, improved retention through addressing academic needs may aid in alleviating some of these financial issues. In previous studies, students cited academic matters like course structure, discussions, and study skills as significant obstacles (Abel, 2002; Fenton-Smith & Michael, 2013; Pan & Wong, 2011). In fact, 74% of international students and 65% of domestic students shared concerns with their academic pursuits (Grayson, 2008). Furthermore, Yi (2007) found that 45.9% of international students’ need for academic assistance was quite common and sometimes overwhelming. Yet, in most of the studies consulted, academics was a catchall term that did not address specific issues. In
In the last ten years there has been a concerted movement in this country to re-design schools according to the Business Model--a movement which has recently gained an apparently unstoppable momentum. We hear continually of the university's need to open up "new markets," to learn new ways to "compete" and create new "customer bases"; simultaneously, we are bombarded with demands from the politicians and administrators who control our public funds to increase our "productivity" and "accountability." (1)
Communicating human resource potentials to the general public might not be at the forefront of most human resources managers and personnel, but in the age of computer- and Internet-based networking the need to present an informative and effective face to the general public should be a concern for the human resources department at every major firm. Websites are now the expected means by which potential applicants, recruiters and job placement specialists, and other interested parties can learn about human resources initiatives at various companies. Though these public career websites or webpages are not a part of the traditional human resources information system, they must incorporate much of the same architecture and should provide a decent level of transparency into the company's human resources workings (Kavanagh at el, 2011). The following pages present a brief analysis of Ford Motor Company's career website as an illustration of these larger principles.
In the current economic system, there are economic positions that favor few; therefore those who are not favored by the system must work to achieve their educational objectives in the university (Douglass, and Thomson, 2012). According to Perna (2010) many college students are engaged in a job and working many hours. Statistics shows that 80 percent of students between 16 and 24 years old worked while enroll in college (National Center for Education
Most university or college faculty members do not realize this and give students are hard time when they can not meet with the faculty member due to work. Faculty need to realize that times have changed and most college students in this time period work and go to school full time. Statistics identified by Perna (2013) indicate that the employment rates of college students is continually increasing throughout the years with forty-five percent of full time students working and eighty percent of part-time students obtaining jobs in 2007 (p.32). Gradually increasing in 2010 to one in every ten fulltime college students working and working more hours a week then in 2007 (p.32). The gradual increase between the three years has to deal with the bad economy, students not receiving the funds they need, and college tuitions increasing.
As a child helping my father’s workplace by handing out employee handbooks or benefits packets I didn’t understand what Human Resources was or that I would, when grown, pursuing a career in this field. After switching my major I graduated back in 2011 with a degree in Business Management with a focus in Human Resources and Organizational Development. Immediately, upon graduation I joined the Human Resource field and I have been here ever since. When reviewing the positions I have held the past seven years against the ten HR Functions in the, Fundamentals of Human Resource Management – Sixth Edition (2016) by Noe, Hollenbeck, Gerhart and Wright, I found the majority of my work experience in human resources has fallen within three of the ten functions; employee relations, personnel policies, and employee data and information systems. I will focus on these three functions and illustrate through my personal work experiences relates directly to these HR functions.