Colleges defend humanities amid tight budgets

Scott says colleges should focus on sciences, not humanities.

Like many humanities advocates, Abbey Drane was disheartened but not surprised when Florida’s governor recently said its tax dollars should bolster science and high-tech studies, not “educate more people who can’t get jobs in anthropology.”

Drane, a 21-year-old anthropology major at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, has spent years defending her choice to pursue that liberal arts field.

And now, as states tighten their allocations to public universities, many administrators say they’re feeling pressure to defend the worth of humanities, too, and shield the genre from budget cuts.…Read More

Posting of profs’ salaries online draws scrutiny

Florida professors earn an average of $80,000 annually.

Are university professors paid too much in Florida? The salaries that Gov. Rick Scott posted online days ago have spurred debates across the state about whether these educators are worth what they make—and Scott’s move also has come under fire from those who say the information is presented without additional context that can help clarify the debate.

Faculty leaders stress that professors in Florida’s public universities earn less than their peers in many other states. Universities must offer competitive salaries, they insist, if the state is to attract talented faculty needed to educate tomorrow’s work force.

The average salaries of full-time professors at public universities in Florida offering bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees fall about $6,000 below the national average, said John W. Curtis, director of research and public policy with the American Association of University Professors.…Read More