Here’s how much less women administrators are earning than men


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Dive Brief:

  • Colleges are still not paying their women leaders equally compared to men in the same roles, according to a Tuesday report from the College and University Professional Association for Human Resources.
  • In 2022, women college administrators made $0.93 for every dollar paid to men in similar positions. That represents just a three-cent reduction in the pay gap over the last two decades, CUPA-HR found.
  • The pay gap between administrators of color and White men shrank between 2012 to 2022, but improvements weren’t even across groups. Black and Native American or Alaska Native administrators still make less than White men, as do Hispanic and Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander women.

Dive Insight:

Women hold 51% of administrative positions in higher education, up 8 percentage points from 43% in 2002, CUPA-HR said. And women now account for the majority in some roles, including chief accounting officers, chief campus planned giving administrators and chief audit officers.

But women administrators are still largely underpaid compared to White men in the same roles, the report found. The largest gap exists for Native American or Alaska Native women, who make $0.83 for every dollar that White men with the same job earn. 

The only exceptions were Asian women and mixed-race women, who are paid $1.07 and $1.02, respectively, for each dollar that comparatively employed White men receive.

Racial disparities also remain in hiring, with people of color holding just 18% of administrator roles, up from 13% in 2012. However, people of color make up 31% of all graduate degree holders nationwide, according to the report. 

“People of color are still woefully underrepresented among higher ed administrators in comparison to U.S. graduate degree holders,” CUPA-HR said in a news release Tuesday. 

Asian people are the least represented among higher ed administrators. They hold 13% of the country’s graduate degrees but just 3% of higher ed administrator jobs. Hispanic or Latino professionals are also underrepresented, earning 7% of graduate degrees but making up just 4% of higher ed administrators.

The gap in representation widens at the top levels of college leadership. 

In 2022, 57% of presidents were White men, and 27% were White women. Just 11% of presidents were men of color. That’s still double the percentage of women of color, who held only 5% of presidential positions.

Gender diversity improved among academic provosts, with White women benefiting in particular.

White women make up 39% of provosts. Women of color and men of color represent 9% and 7% of provosts, respectively. White men still represent the largest group, however, making up 45% of provosts.


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