Tuesday, May 31, 2011
When times get tough, top talent goes elsewhere.
That truism, while perhaps too simplistic to be applied widely, seems to be increasingly confronting many public universities, especially flagships, that have seen state support slashed or the political environment grow more tense and unpredictable. And, some say, the situation threatens to get worse.
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is grappling with the departure of 78 faculty members this year (out of 110 who were wooed) -- more than 2.5 times the number who left the previous year. Perhaps not coincidentally, Chapel Hill is also facing its third straight year of declining state appropriations, a trend that has led to a pay freeze for faculty during the same period, said Holden Thorp, Chapel Hill’s chancellor. ...
"I think the bad thing right now is that, to the extent that there’s a pattern of exodus, it’ll go from state to private schools," said [Brian] Leiter of Chicago. "We’ll see the continued evisceration of public universities."