Over 40 profs left ISU last year

Alison Storm

Forty-two Iowa State professors submitted resignations last year, according to a Board of Regents report published in The Des Moines Register.

According to the same report, the total number of resignations for Iowa’s three regent universities was 122, which is the largest number in more than a decade.

Dave Holger, associate dean of the College of Engineering, said he has seen an increase in the number of resignations submitted in the college, but it hasn’t been dramatic.

“There have been people who have left engineering who we would have liked to stay,” he said. “The biggest implication on us is we seem to have more positions open.”

Holger also said those positions have taken longer to fill.

The College of Engineering is different from other departments because they compete with the industry as well as with other universities, Holger said.

“I think Iowa State is in a better position than 15 to 20 years ago as far as being competitive on salaries,” he said.

Holger also said it’s “not always the simple matter of money.” He said it is important to provide professors with good facilities and the “opportunity to do unique things.”

Labh Hira, associate dean of the College of Business, agreed that it will take more than salary increases to keep professors at ISU.

He said it is important to “challenge them intellectually and offer a competitive compensation package.”

“The College of Business last year had very good people leave,” Hira said. “At the same time, we attracted some very qualified people.”

Despite increased competition, Hira said ISU has “been able to maintain a good quality of faculty.”

Interim Provost Richard Seagrave said the profession as a whole is more mobile, which may account for the increase in resignations submitted by ISU professors.

“It’s a natural part of academic life,” he said. “People will move for a variety of reasons. I think it happens when good opportunities turn up in other places.”

Hira also said it is a good sign when companies and other universities want ISU faculty.

“It is gratifying to know that you have quality faculty that other schools want,” Hira said.