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ERIC Number: EJ861284
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 8
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-1528-5324
Who Pays Student Workers Higher Wages, Central IT or Distributed IT?
Stack, David
EDUCAUSE Quarterly, v32 n3 2009
In a time of scarce resources, it is counterproductive for an institution to artificially inflate student wages via internecine struggles between central IT services and similar, distributed services in university departments. The pressure to inflate student wages might be exacerbated by similar but opposite viewpoints on the part of supervisors, however. For example: (1) Central IT tends to believe that academic departments can afford to pay a small number of students excessive wages and thereby drive up the campus wage scale; and (2) Distributed IT units perceive central IT as having deep pockets and therefore able to pay high wages the departments can't match. After expressing these opposing viewpoints on the EDUCAUSE Distributed Technology Support Constituent Group electronic discussion list, AJ Kelton and the author circulated a survey designed to investigate the issue and uncover the institutional factors that might cloud a simple comparison of wage amounts. In 2007, Kelton and the author received 177 valid responses to a voluntary student wage survey that was distributed to more than a dozen electronic discussion lists sponsored by EDUCAUSE, the Society of College and University Planners (SCUP), and other professional organizations. In addition to questions regarding wages, the survey asked respondents to report: (1) Their purview as central IT or distributed IT; (2) Public or private control of their institution; (3) Their institution's mission; (4) The type of neighborhood surrounding their institution; (5) The region of the country in which their institution is located; and (6) The tasks performed by their student workers. The survey results were analyzed with the assistance of the Consulting Office for Research and Evaluation (CORE) in the School of Education at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. The data from the survey on wages for IT student workers revealed some significant differences: (1) From an hourly wage perspective, a student employee is likely to be better off working for a distributed IT organization in a campus department than working for the institution's central IT organization; (2) A student working at a research institution can expect to be paid more than one working for a master's or four-year institution; and (3) A student working at an urban institution is likely paid more than a student working at a rural institution. Student workers might want to consider these results when applying for positions in central or distributed IT at their chosen universities. (Contains 1 table and 1 figure.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A