Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Lessons in SMU Hate: Greed is Good.

SMU President, R. Gerald Turner.

As a TCU Graduate, I think one of the most shocking things you have to take notice of from year to year is the skyrocketing tuition rate the current and future Horned Frogs have been saddled with. When I started in 2002, I think tuition was somewhere in the neighborhood of $17,000; now it has jumped all the way to above $30,000, and is still climbing. In fact, tuitions have risen so astronomically that it completely destroyed programs such as the Texas Tomorrow Fund which allowed parents to pay in, tax free and lock in a specific tuition rate for the four years their son/daughter attended the school. Part of this is probably due to the demand – with the children of the baby boom generation reaching college age and colleges not being able to increase enrollment capacity fast enough to compensate, this is a pretty good way of controlling the enrollment going forward. And naturally inflation plays a major role in this, as it does in all things. But, the way schools play up the, “Well, we need this money to keep up with the joneses!” BS is kind of sickening when you really think about it.

And in some cases, it’s simply not true.

Throughout all of this, our neighbor across the Metroplex has managed to remain ahead of us when it comes to digging the financial knife in as deep as possible for their serviceable education. And while the same things mentioned above play a role in SMU’s raising costs, there’s a pretty interesting difference between SMU and any other school when it comes to how they allocate the tuition they receive:

They pay their President, Gerald J Turner, more than any other administrator in the country. And it’s not that close. And when I say it’s not even close I mean, according to this report, in 2008 Turner was paid TWO POINT EIGHT MILLION DOLLARS for his services. The next highest? Vanderbilt’s President at $2.4 million, whose school is ranked 39 spots higher than Turner’s education wise.

Let that sink in – the President of the 56th rated college in the country, education wise, gets paid exponentially more than the 55 men and women who are better at their jobs than he is. Seriously though, his school can’t pinch a few pennies to honor scholarships and he can destroy the dreams of young football players hoping to get an education, but he can sleep at night knowing that he’s being paid more than the Presidents of Harvard, Georgetown, Stanford, Yale, Princeton, Columbia, Penn… you know, legitimate higher learning institutions. 56th. Sure, I can understand if SMU was absolutely shocking the world all-around academically, but other than a pretty good business school, what do they have? SMU is as middle of the pack as they come. Turner should be ashamed of himself for accepting that paycheck.

So why? Why do they pay him this much money? Is it because under his watch drug related deaths have increased about as rapidly as his school’s tuition? Because he’s been operating cover up after cover up to hide these deaths as long as he’s been on campus? Is it because he’s one of the biggest things holding back June Jones from really getting his team to turn the corner? Is it because SMU is really just a big drug money laundering operation and he’s filtering it back to his criminal students? Well actually, that could be the reason. Don’t say I didn’t tell you so when this story breaks in a couple of years.

Oh, but they have a 50% higher number of female engineers when compared to the national averages. So thanks for adding to the blossoming population of women who do not like men.

I’m guessing this must have something to do with the image that SMU projects. They overpay for EVERYTHING. You’ll remember they were at one point paying June Jones $2 million per victory. I really think this is how their student body makes their college choice; they’re a bunch of uneducated decision makers. “Durr, it’s the most expensive and their President gets paid the most money? Then it’s gotta be good, rankings be damned!” It’s kind of like why they all drive Range Rovers and live in Uptown High Rises even though it makes no sense geographically for them to be there; because it’s the most expensive, it must be the best. They’re like mice about to be caught in a mouse trap, "oh look, cheese! shiny! /death"

But the thing about it is, think about what SMU could be doing with all that extra money. For one, they could lower tuition and make the school available to more people. Or they could put it into multiple, multiple scholarship funds. Or they could upgrade their facilities. Or they could literally do anything but give it to someone who is just going to put it in his pocket and continue to be the not best at his job.

So what point am I trying to prove here? That SMU people are dumb, naturally.

And that’s today’s underwhelming lesson in SMU Hate that I rushed out so it’d be timely for tonight’s game. Go Frogs.

1 comment:

Zachary said...

"So thanks for adding to the blossoming population of women who do not like men."

hahahaha golden.