Colorado Mesa University (CMU) has been advertising for a tenure-track assistant nursing professor for its Montrose campus.
The position requires teaching 12 course credit hours each semester, or 24 credits over an academic year, which is considered a standard, full-time teaching load. Applicants must also have a current RN license, plus a minimum of two years of full time professional clinical experience and a graduate degree in nursing from a nationally accredited school of nursing, with a Ph.D. preferred, as well as other requirements.
But the pay is only $55,000 – 60,000 a year.
This struck me as low, given the qualifications CMU requires of applicants who apply for the position.
Investigation shows it is, in fact, an extraordinarily low salary.
Salaries for similar positions elsewhere in Colorado and across the country reveal that CMU’s instructor pay — at least for this position — is indeed remarkably low compared to other parts of the state, and the U.S. in general:
I posted information about CMU’s pay scale for an assistant professor of nursing on social media and got a host of comments. Some were from people who work at CMU, or had to turn down instructor positions in the nursing department at CMU due to the low pay. This information about salaries and the comments it generaged could provide important feedback to CMU, as the school has developed a reputation for prioritizing acquisition of real estate and building more buildings (pdf) and emphasizing athletics while neglecting to pay decent salaries to its academic staff that are at least commensurate with those paid to academic staff elsewhere: