Gordon Gee, the Ohio State University president fired for making weird anti-Catholic statements about Notre Dame, will get the golden parachute of all golden parachutes, “a $5.8 million package over the next five years, along with an office, a secretary and a premium parking pass,” according to the Huffington Post.
This is perhaps an example of how much power and privilege college administrators have in academia now, but he’s worth it. Sorry, but if any college president deserves a great big severance package, it’s him.
That’s because the primary responsibilities of a college president today are to raise the prestige of the institution and bring in money. And Gee has done those things incredibly well.
U.S. News & World Report now rankings OSU as the 18th best public university and 55th overall university in America. (It’s 37th in our rankings.) In 2006, before he came to the university, 80 percent of freshmen were in the top 25 percent of their high school graduating class. About 44 percent were in the top 10 percent. Today 89 percent of freshmen were in the top 25 percent of their high school graduating class. And 54 percent were in the top 10 percent.
Perhaps most importantly, he raised huge amounts of money for OSU. He brought in more than $1.6 billion to Ohio State.
That $5.8 million is a lot of money and Gee certainly has no need for it in any objective sense, but it’s really nothing compared to what’s he’s given Ohio State.