Speaking of the Lord!
Sam, showing a little city and state pride, kicked back last night, grabbed a beer, sat with his big Husky dog, and watched the Rose Bowl. Maybe the Lord was with Texas Christian U, as this little rinky dink bible belt college in don't mess withTexas slew big bad Madison in the Rose Bowl. Now this has to be a first. Instead of saying hi mom like most jocks, the winning quarterback, during his nationally televised interview after the game, peered into the camera, smiled and quoted scripture. TCU has about 9,000 students, Madison has 35,000. Madison's endowment is 1.5 billion, TCU's is 158 million. TCU is private, Madison is public. I guess the lesson here is that hard work and dedication pays off in life, classes, and along with a little divine intervention or inspiration, even wins bowl games. Here is the question. Madison football brought in over 90 million this year. Given this success, should the UW Madison coach, already paid a cool 2 million annually, be given an additional 1 million dollar bonus? If you answer affirmatively, do you think that it would be also appropriate to reward faculty members for student success in their classes?
Before answering, consider the benefits. By increasing student success in classes, the institution could save resources and be able to re-direct them elsewhere to meet other pressing campus needs. For example, reducing the failure rate in gateway courses like math could potentially save a huge amount of resources. Math 141 has one of the highest failure rates of any course on campus, around 30 - 40 percent. The failure rate is so high that the department created a second more easier course for mathematically challenged students. Next, Whitewater has a 56 percent graduation rate, Madison is around 80 percent, while elite institutions are over 90 percent. The bottom line is just about 1 out of 2 students who enter Whitewater do not finish, and just about 4 out of every ten student have repeat a math class. This is a huge waste of resources! However, to end on a positive note, Whitewater is doing much better than area community colleges. You do not want to know the numbers!
My question again - should we pay faculty members for student success? They have been given merit awards for their own individual success, namely scholarship.