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Students React to CCRI President’s $370,000 in Salary, Perks

Friday, December 06, 2013

 

“Excessive,” “ridiculous,” and “remarkable” were some of the words from Community College of Rhode Island students reacting Thursday to the compensation and spending of college President Ray Di Pasquale, who earns an annual salary approximately $100,000 above the national median for community college heads.

Since taking the helm in 2006, a GoLocal report this week found Di Pasquale had spent over $20,000 of CCRI Foundation money at the private University Club in Providence's east side, and the college has spent over $325,000 maintaining the president's residence on the CCRI Warwick campus. Di Pasquale's total compensation including retirement and benefits currently tops $370,000 each year.

CCRI students: President is “doing quite well”

“Oh, wow, he's living large,” said Ivaneize Fernandes, a 24-year-old student from Pawtucket. “I feel like, as a president, there are a lot of people having trouble paying for tuition — even at a community college. The president should be focused on education,” she said outside of CCRI's campus in Providence.

“I would do something else with that money,” opined Darius Estevez, another student from Cranston, who said he had had a positive experience with CCRI overall. “It's a tricky question because it can go both ways. ... What I would do with that money is help some students out.”

“He's doing quite well for himself,” said Ray, 45, of Warren, after seeing the numbers compiled by GoLocal. “It should be posted on the wall in there,” he said, indicating toward the campus in Warwick.

Kris, a 48-year-old student from East Greenwich who started school last spring, called the figures “ridiculous.”

“I don't think the compensation is justified,” she said, recounting her own experience with the administration which she described as unresponsive. Although satisfied with professors and staff at CCRI, Kris said the combined costs of tuition, books, and fees were difficult to bear — especially after she was forced to use student loans for an emergency car repair earlier this year.

Spending at the University Club has included candidate dinners, meals, and beverages over the course of fundraising and recruiting donors.

CEO compensation contrasted with student debt

“I think that's kind of selfish ... It's not fair,” voiced Tauri Sequeira, a first-semester student from Warwick who said she was currently paying out of pocket to attend. “That's a large amount above the average.” With two younger siblings, Sequeira said the strain on her parents paying for college would necessitate her taking out loans.

As student loan debt surpasses $1 trillion in the United States, tuition costs have increased more than 1,000 percent in the past three decades. Meanwhile, colleges like CCRI have begun employing more and more lower paid part-time adjunct professors.

Di Pasquale's salary increased sharply in 2010, to over $265,000, when he begin serving as interim commissioner of higher education for the board of governors. But that pay level remained after the interim state position went away. Costs to maintain the president's residence in recent years have included $50,000 on swimming pool maintenance and a new $20,000 fence.

Pool maintenance, a new fence... and signs

Kris said there had been other recent additions outside Di Pasquale's Knight Residence: “Private property” signs warning to keep out.

The average salary for a community college president was $167,000 in 2012, according to the American Association of Community Colleges. With six locations and close to 18,000 students, Rhode Island's community college system is dwarfed by a nationwide enrollment of over 8 million according to that association.

“It's kind of shocking (but) seems like the usual for Rhode Island,” said Will Stearns of North Kingstown, who was unsurprised by the high rate of compensation. “Rhode Island is corrupt as hell,” he said.

Fernandes, who said she was planning to completed core courses at CCRI before transferring, said the compensation might be due for a doctor or the head of an Ivy League school. “It's a community college for goodness sake.”

“He's not saving lives.”


Related Slideshow:
CCRI: Residence and U. Club Spending

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U. Club '08 Spending

Total Amount for Year: $6,203.24

Top 5 Expenses

1. July 24, 2007: Membership Dues & Entrance Fees, $3,225.00

2. Oct. 30, 2007: Food Charges, $601.40

3. (Tie) Oct. 30, 2007: Membership Dues, $450.00

3. (Tie) Feb. 8, 2008: Membership Dues, $450.00

3. (Tie) April 29, 2008: Membership Dues, $450.00

Photo: Flickr/EwenRoberts

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U. Club '09 Spending

Total Amount for Year: $3,252.11

Top 5 Expenses

1. Oct. 23, 2008: Charges Thru 9/30/08, $1,191.72

2. Feb. 10, 2009: Charges Thru 12/31/08, $587.18

3. Aug. 18, 2008: Charges Thru 6/30/08, $463.75

4. June 30, 2009: Charges Thru 6/30/09, $331.05

5. March 12, 2009: Charges Thru 2/28/09, $162.91

Photo: Flickr/AlenaAlioshina

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U. Club '10 Spending

Total Amount for Year: $666.93

All Expenses

1. June 9, 2010: Charges Thru 5/31/10, $259.22

2. May 6, 2010: Charges Thru 4/31/10, $150.38

3. Dec. 23, 2009: Charges Thru 11/30/09, $147.97

4. Nov. 9, 2009: Charges Thru 10/31/09, $109.36

Photo: Flickr/copperblue2

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U. Club '11 Spending

Total Amount for Year: $1,402.77

Top 5 Expenses

1. Feb. 8, 2011: Charges Thru 12/31/10 & 1/31/11, $295.67

2. Oct. 20, 2010: Charges at University Club, $202.52

3. May 17, 2011: Beverage/Restaurant Lunch, $184.41

4. April 7, 2011: Restaurant Lunch, $149.31

5. Sept. 21, 2010: Charges Thru 8/31/10, $135.81

Photo: Flickr/khamerica

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U. Club '12 Spending

Total Amount for Year: $5,079.48

Top 5 Expenses

1. Feb. 9, 2012: Function/Beverage Restaurant, $760.19

2. May 8, 2012: Charges Thru 4/30/12, $470.08

3. June 6, 2012: Function Restaurant, $357.48

4. Nov. 4, 2011: Restaurant Dinner, $351.32

5. June 6, 2012: Restaurant Dinner, $255.96

Photo: Flickr/Nick J Webb

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U. Club '13 Spending

Total Amount for Year: $2,403.85

Top 5 Expenses

1. May 16, 2013: Function/Beverage Restaurant, $355.21

2. May 16, 2013: Function/Beverage Restaurant, $337.73

3. June 27, 2013: VPAA Candidate Dinner, $300.21

4. May 16, 2013: Function/Beverage Restaurant, $215.46

5. May 16, 2013: Dinner Restaurant/Beverage, $200.88

Photo: Flickr/Super Fantastic

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U. Club '14 Spending

Total Amount for Year: $1,066.95

Top 5 Expenses

1. Aug. 6, 2013: VPAA Candidate Dinner, $256.21

2. Aug. 6, 2013: VPAA Candidate Dinner, $218.37

3. Aug. 6, 2013: Restaurant Lunch, 201.69

4. Aug. 6, 2013: VPAA Candidate Dinner, $186.34

5. Aug. 6, 2013: VPAA Candidate Dinner, $184.15

Photo: Flickr/sh0dan

Prev Next

Knight Estate '06 Costs

Total Amount for Year: $24,700.56

Pool Costs: $3,569.20

Top 5 Non-Pool Expenses

1. Date Unavailable: Cost of fuel for estate, $7,814.88

2. Date Unavailable: Cost of electricity for estate, $2,977.04

3. July 19, 2006: Repair/refasten handrails at estate, $2,269.00

4. Aug. 2, 2006: Upholstery and carpet cleaning at estate, $2,183.75

5. Aug. 2, 2006: Washer and dryer replacement, $1,388.95

Photo: Flickr/Leshaines123

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Knight Estate '07 Costs

Total Amount for Year: $55,252.03

Pool Costs: $3,488.75

Top 5 Non-Pool Expenses

1. Sept. 12, 2007: Water damage repair to residence, $12,900.00

2. Sept. 28, 2007: Cost of fuel for estate, $11,713.98

3. Oct. 25, 2007: Dome construction, $6,205.70

4. June 25, 2007: Storm window replacement, $5,786.00

5. June 5, 2007: Final external chimney repair, $3,813.00

Photo: Flickr/andrewcbraithwaite

Prev Next

Knight Estate '08 Costs

Total Amount for Year: $50,575.12

Pool Costs: $25,262.04

Top 5 Non-Pool Expenses

1. Nov. 20, 2008: Cost of fuel for estate, $8,003.13

2. Date Unavailable: Cost of electricity for estate, $4,425.67

3. Sept. 10, 2008: Removal of four trees, $2,483.50

4. Aug. 1, 2008: Repair broken glass on garage, $2,044.00

5. Date Unavailable: Internet and cable, $1,154.80

Photo: Flickr/brandonthemandon

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Knight Estate '09 Costs

Total Amount for Year: $63,238.68

Pool Costs: $3,115.85

Top 5 Non-Pool Expenses

1. Dec. 3, 2009: New Carriage House roofing system, $37,232.00

2. Oct. 16, 2009: Cost of fuel for estate, $8,843.96

3. Date Unavailable: Cost of electricity for estate, $4,273.23

4. Oct. 21, 2009: Tree and limb removal, $1,404.00

5. Date Unavailable: Internet and cable, $1,197.98

Photo: Flickr/lesanimaiux

Prev Next

Knight Estate '10 Costs

Total Amount for Year: $23,592.93

Pool Costs: $2,680.00

Top 5 Non-Pool Expenses

1. Oct. 20, 2010: Cost of fuel for estate, $11,743.42

2. Date Unavailable: Cost of electricity for estate, $4,325.18

3. Jan. 6, 2010: Tree and limb removal, $1,404.00

4. Date Unavailable: Internet and cable, $1,277.66

5. Date Unavailable: Phone, $856.05

Photo: Flickr/lAlexBramwell

Prev Next

Knight Estate '11 Costs

Total Amount for Year: $30,039.48

Pool Costs: $3,173.65

Top 5 Non-Pool Expenses

1. Oct. 24, 2011: Cost of fuel for estate, $9,889.28

2. Oct. 26, 2011: Tree and limb removal (hurricane damage), $3,806.00

3. Date Unavailable: Cost of electricity, $2,908.81

4. Date Unavailable: Phone and wireless access, $1,964.19

5. Oct. 17, 2011: Transplant trees at estate, $1755.00

Photo: Flickr/Pascal

Prev Next

Knight Estate '12 Costs

Total Amount for Year: $28,653.39

Pool Costs: $6,355.29

Top 5 Non-Pool Expenses

1. July 1, 2012: Cost of fuel for estate, $12,816.63

2. Date Unavailable: Cost of electricity, $2,860.14

3. Date Unavailable: Phone and wireless access, $1,746.94

4. Date Unavailable: Internet and cable, $1,354.36

5. July 20, 2012: Repair pure water system, $1,189.99

Photo: Flickr/chloe004

Prev Next

Knight Estate '13 Costs

Total Amount for Year: $37,565.42

Pool Costs: $3,565.00

Top 5 Non-Pool Expenses

1. April 1, 2013: A & E for renovation of Knight residence, $31,400.00

2. July 29, 2013: Cost of fuel for estate, $712.42

3. March 21, 2013: Emergency roof repair, $768.00

4. June 18, 2013: Tent rental for college event at estate, $620.00

5. July 2, 2013: Tent rental for college event at estate, $500.00

Photo: Flickr/BrahmMeyer

 
 

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Comments:

Killary Klinton

“Excessive,” “ridiculous,” and “remarkable” were some of the words from Community College of Rhode Island students reacting Thursday to the compensation and spending of college President Ray Di Pasquale, who earns an annual salary approximately $100,000 above the national median for community college heads.

Who are these milleniums think they are? If the salary is agreed upon by the school, who are they to dispute the amount?

I'll bet these same Gen Y idiots don't care when Moochelle spends millions on vacations for her and her friends.

Well done professors. Teaching Marxism and income redistribution to minds full of mush.

KK

Remember Benghazi 2012 when Hillary Clinton told congress, What difference does it make?

Mark St. Pierre

Now student know why they keep getting flecced with tuition hikes !

James Berling

Killary, I think you’re wrong on this one. You have to admit this is a familiar theme. Public workers in RI—like President Di Pasquale—always seem to be among the highest paid in the land. We have the highest paid firefighters also.

If the average for Community College presidents is $100,000 less why is it that RI taxpayers are paying so much? Could it be that no one is minding the store?

Jim D

$50,000 on pool maintenance.

I'd love to see the actual invoices and what those charges were actually for.

Nicolette Nicolaides

Just a little persective:

$20, 000 over 7 years equals $3000 per year spent at the University Club. I'd hardly call that "ridiculous" in attracting large donors and investors.

The URI basketball coach is being paid TWICE the amount that the President is.




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