I knew that university vice-chancellors drew generous renumeration for their services, but never imagined, as Natasha Bita writes (Call to cut vice-chancellor’s pay 19/7) they were so richly rewarded. For vice chancellors at 37 Australian universities to be averaging a salary of $1 million a year is almost obscene.
During the covid years 2202/21, universities everywhere cut back on staff and trimmed programs offered in order to save their collective bottom line. Stories of misery inflicted on staff and frustrating students number in their thousands. Seemingly V-C’s, whose decisions lead to the heartache endured were largely inviolate to austerity measures.
I concur with Bita’s suggestion that the largesse vice-chancellors enjoy is reward beyond any measure of real worth. They may be the heads of universities but the real work is done by those in subordinate management, leadership and teaching positions. Trimming their salaries to realistic levels, with money saved going toward lecturer and student benefit, should be the new way forward for these territory institutions.