E. Britt Brockman, Chair of the UK Board of Trustees, released the 2014-2015 budget on Monday. To exactly no one’s surprise, the budget reveals a startling swathe of radical new cuts. What was surprising was that faculty salaries have been completely removed from the budget.
“Honestly, I was shocked,” said sociology assistant professor, Dr. Elizabeth Pratt. “I just got this tenure-track job four years ago. I was up for tenure this year. Now, that’s far, far down the shitter.”
The Board of Trustees issued a statement. “This year the budget was extremely tight,” the memorandum said. “Universities across the country are cutting back. We all have to make sacrifices.”
The memo continued for pages and pages of vague and bureaucratically suitable (B. S.) reasoning. It detailed the “indispensable” programs such as basketball, football, a new Honors College dorm, and a giant wrought-iron Cat. In light of these campus essentials, there was “just no room” to pay professors.
“Given that the average professor salary at the UK was $84,000 in 2012,” it continues, “with 1,344 professors, that ‘reaaaally friggin’ adds up. Especially given that we can pay a graduate student T.A. $15,000 to do the same thing.”
After (several hours of clumsy) calculations, the Colonel staff figger’d the total allotment for salaries used to be about $113 million dollars. With the new budget, that figure is expected to be a measly $17 million.
Instead of PhD’s teaching classes, beginning in 2014, the Administration intends to hire a massive influx of blear-eyed, proletarian graduate students. This restless mob (estimated to number 1,300) will assume all teaching at all levels of coursework.
In response to objections that the quality of instruction may suffer, the Administration quipped, “What does a college degree really mean anymore?”
We asked students for their reactions. Jordan Worley, a UK freshman (Integrated Strategic Communication), seemed optimistic: “I don’t know, it’s cool I guess. I have a T.A. teaching my class right now, you know, and he’s pretty cool, I guess.”
Others less so. “Are you kidding me!?” ranted sophomore Frank “Shoop” Baskerville (Undecided). “Those T.A.’s are incompetent, ignorant, arrogant bungholes, if you’ll pardon my French. If I have to take another class with one of those hazy-eyed, crazy-haired, power tripping slackers, I’ll explode.”
After shaking his head and lighting a cigarette, he sniffed, “That’s the last straw. I’m going to Transy.”
The Colonel confirmed that Transylvania is also firing all its professors. Hearing this news, “Shoop” said he plans to drop out of college completely and cultivate an uncontrollable drug habit. “I really like Breaking Bad. I think I’ll give it a go.”
Dr. Brockman did not return the Colonel’s phone calls.