I got this email from the UCLA alumni association with the subject line: “The dollars and sense of your support” telling me that tuition is now 14 TIMES higher than in 1990, and that a student would have to work full-time for 45 weeks at minimum wage to pay for one year of school (compared to 9.5 weeks in 1990).
They want me to “imagine the possibilities of all of us coming together—giving any amount to anywhere on campus—to support students, UCLA and the collective Bruin Family.”
I’d like to imagine the possibilities if the Regents hadn’t voted to give “administrative stipends” ranging from $24,000 to $58,625 to executives without any extra duties in 2009.
I’d like to imagine the possibilities if the Regents hadn’t approved salary raises of 6.4% to 23% for 12 highly ranked administrators and attorneys in 2011, most of whom already earned more than $200,000 a year.
I’d like to imagine the possibilities if the Regents hadn’t imposed cuts amounting to a 1.5% decrease in take home pay for UC service workers making an average of $35,000 per year in 2013, in the same year that UC’s highest paid employees — nearly 700 of whom receive larger salaries than the President of the United States — received a 3% across the board raise.
I’d like to imagine the possibilities if TA support at UCLA didn’t lag behind other universities by between $2,697 and $4,978/year.
I’d like to imagine the possibilities of being in a doctoral program where students weren’t dropping out because they have no funding to pay $14,497/year for the privilege of getting a Ph.D.
I’d like to imagine the possibilities if more than 50% of those accepted into UC graduate programs didn’t go elsewhere, where they could find better funding.
I’d like to imagine the possibilities if UC departing Executive Vice-President Peter Taylor didn’t think the best way to increase UC revenue in a time of lower state support would be to expand professional master’s degree programs (i.e., increasing revenue from tuition and subsequently increasing student debt) and technology commercialization (i.e., prioritizing research that leads to products and profits rather than public goods).
Stop asking students to foot the bill for UC management!!!
The whole premise that alumni and private donations should take the place of state funding—in a state where all of the main elected representatives are Democrats, mind you—is ludicrous.