It's an Uphill Battle to Recruit, Retain Top Faculty

Recruiting top faculty and retaining them will become increasingly difficult for UC if the system's economic picture doesn't improve, UC Regents were told at their Oct. 20 meeting.

Although recruitment system-wide showed no decline for 1993-94, first-choice candidates who opted not to come to UC reported economic reasons as the most important determinant, according to data reported by UC Assistant Vice President Ellen Switkes.

UC officials estimate faculty salaries currently lag 9 percent behind the market.

Switkes reported that 43 percent of those who declined offers said salaries were better elsewhere, 21 percent cited lack of adequate employment opportunities for spouses, and 11 percent cited "a perceived lack of public support for the University of California."

The good news was that despite budget cutbacks and the fact that salaries are beginning to lag, UC campuses in 1993-94 were able to hire 88 percent of first-choice candidates, which is about normal.

At Berkeley, Chancellor Tien has consistently applauded the quality of the new faculty recruited.

(A special report with profiles and photos of Berkeley's new faculty appeared in the Oct. 19-25 Berkeleyan.)

In terms of retention, Switkes said "raiding efforts" by UC's competitors were a major cause of faculty leaving.

This year's budget proposal for faculty increases of 5 percent would be the first step of a five-year process to bring faculty salaries back to the average of comparable institutions.


Copyright 1994, The Regents of the University of California.
Produced and maintained by the Office of Public Affairs at UC Berkeley.
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