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Business and Policy Areas
Business and Policy Areas

Number of Higher Ed Staff Growing, Along With Salaries

August 15, 2006

The total number of staff employed at post-secondary institutions in the United States increased by 22 percent between 1993 and 2003, outpacing the growth of both the civilian labor force (13 percent) and student enrollment (16 percent), according to a recent study by the National Center for Education Statistics. The study examines many of the changes in faculty, administrators, support personnel, and salaries over this 10-year period.

Highlights of the study include the following:

  • The three states with the highest increase in higher education employees during the decade were Alaska (88 percent), Nevada (73 percent), and Arizona (73 percent).

  • The number of full-time faculty jobs increased 15 percent. Part--time positions, however, increased at nearly three times this rate, 44 percent for the decade.

  • The average salary for all staff members grew by 13 percent, from $41,700 to $46,900 once adjusted for inflation. Executive, administrative, and managerial staff members saw the highest increase in average salary (from $60,300 to $70,400, or 17 percent).

  • The number of staff members in professional positions grew by a third, while nonprofessional positions increased only 1 percent.

  • Though Caucasian staff still continue to hold the majority of staff positions at post-secondary institutions, Hispanic, Asian, and American Indian staff increased at a faster rate than their Caucasian colleagues--61, 63, and 45 percent, respectively, compared to 13 percent.

The full report, Changes in Staff Distribution and Salaries of Full-Time Employees in Postsecondary Institutions: Fall 1993–2003, is available at no cost on the NCES Web site.