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YSU enrollment increase means extra $4,500 for union members



Published: Fri, September 11, 2009 @ 12:05 a.m.

By Harold Gwin

YOUNGSTOWN — This fall’s jump in enrollment will translate into nearly $5.3 million in additional revenue for Youngstown State University, but the university’s Association of Classified Employees union members will get a big chunk of that money.

The union has an enrollment- incentive bonus built into its current contract that pays union members a stipend determined by the size of enrollment growth from year-to-year.

The university said that bonus will amount to $4,500 per employee and cost a total of $1.8 million this year.

The university reports that enrollment reached 14,682 this semester, an increase of 970 students over last fall and the highest number since 1992.

That enrollment number translates into a full-time equivalent enrollment of 11,649, up from 10,953 last fall.

Full-time equivalent is determined by the total number of student credit hours divided by 15 (the number of credit hours considered to be full-time.)

Thomas Maraffa, special assistant to the president, told the YSU board of trustees Thursday that the jump in FTE will mean an additional $5.275 million in revenue for the university this fiscal year.

However, the added enrollment will bring some additional expenses, he said.

At the top of the list is the $1.8 million in enrollment-incentive bonuses going to the ACE members, he said.

The university is also going to spend $220,000 in hiring adjunct faculty to cover the additional classes required by the enrollment growth, Maraffa said.

There may also be an increase in demand for student financial aid that would be filled from the added revenue, he said.

The ACE bonus provides that the university reward the union members $375 for each 0.5 percent growth in FTE enrollment.

This year’s enrollment represents just over a 6 percent FTE growth, which means each union member will get $4,500.

The union has nearly 400 members.

It isn’t their first bonus.

The FTE growth last year was 1.5 percent, which meant a $1,125 bonus for each union member for a total of $440,000, according to the university.

ACE represents administrative assistants, clerical, secretarial, admissions, maintenance, trades workers and other employee groups.

The incentive bonus recognizes those employees’ role in helping to recruit and retain students, said Ron Cole, YSU spokesman.

He was quick to point out that President David C. Sweet has said many times that the ongoing enrollment growth is the result of an effort by everyone on campus.

However, only ACE has the incentive bonus in its contract.

Brian Brennan, ACE president, said the bonus is a reflection of the caring attention that his union members give to students that goes above and beyond the normal job requirements. They are the people that the students come in contact with outside the classroom, he said.

In addition to their regular duties, they often provide career advice, research advice and more. It’s that attention that helps encourage students to come back next semester, Brennan said.

A breakdown of the 790-student growth shows the biggest number, 422, is an increase in the number of undergraduates returning for another year.

First-time students who graduated before this spring but had delayed attending college made up the second-largest group at 295.

Undergraduate transfers from other schools amounted to 119. Former YSU undergraduates who dropped out of school but returned this fall and spring 2009 graduates from outside Mahoning, Trumbull and Columbiana counties accounted for the rest.

gwin@vindy.com


Comments

1aeparish(669 comments)posted 5 years ago

That's BS. This is part of the reason why our country's in the shape it's in.

Enrollment jumps up and everyone gets a raise? But yet they've still cancelled the tuition freeze...

If it weren't for these additional students enrolling, they wouldn't be getting their precious little bonus -- so shouldn't that money, or at least a good part of it, be going back to the students?

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2Viewpoint(89 comments)posted 5 years ago

How much do they give back when students drop out or wash out from classes? Whoever agreed to such an asinine deal should be fired, this whole scenario smells. Were these ACE employees responsible for bringing these new students to campus? I think not, it is more like a result of the economic downturn. Students that would have gone away to school are staying local due to economic necessity.Do any of you in the academic community have any touch with reality at all?

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3RFederer(116 comments)posted 5 years ago

Only in the birarro world of unions can this type of goofiness exist. Bad economy, higher enrollment, bonus city for the membership.

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4penguinfan1(29 comments)posted 5 years ago

What about the librarians who students come into contact with? They are not ACE members and I will bet that they help students a lot more than someone in the shipping department. What about admissions employees? Most of them are in another union. Don't students come into contact with them as well. The Union president makes it sound like ACE members are the only other people who help students on the campus. There are 3 other unions on the campus. Not just ACE, and I would like to think they all do their share. But to say that they go above and beyond and infer that the other unions do not is pure BS! What about the FOP? I'm sure there have been times when students have been glad to see them.

This bonus makes the administration of YSU look bad. It is insane during these economic times to give $1.8 million to a union and it's members.

How about taking that money and not raising the students tuition? This just plain stinks!

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5dbinnc(51 comments)posted 5 years ago

Were are all our Pro Union idiots now???? Nowhere to be found because they all know this will just lead to tuition increases for the students, cost cutting in 6 months by YSU and everyone will forget about the $5400 bonus. The unions killed manufacturing because of their GREED now their going to kill YSU.
Stupid Stupid Stupid
"Unions built this country and they are DESTROYING this country"

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6northsideperson(365 comments)posted 5 years ago

Ignoring for a moment whether such a deal should have even been agreed-on, to change it now would require re-opening their contract. It can't be withheld by the university administration.

This is the down-side of a three-year contract, as a lot - good or bad - can happen in three years.

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7CandyfromCanfield(172 comments)posted 5 years ago

Surely Mr. Brennan can't be serious. Not sure how a payroll clerk, delivery person, janitor, administrative secretary, groundskeeper, etc. has "caring contact" with students. ACE got this contract last year because President Sweet didn't want a strike during the centennial year, and both the Board and the administration were bamboozled by an ACE team that was smarter/more clever than they were. Now they are claiming the contract is illegal. Shame on the Board, shame on the YSU Administration, shame on ACE! To the hardworking students of YSU who got socked with a tuition increase, and to the fine non-ACE union staff of admissions folks, reference librarians, those working in financial aid, registration and advising, faculty, and those who really WORKED to increase enrollment, I'd say you need to have a good old fashioned protest rally! It's crap like this ridiculous enrollment incentive to a group of overpaid non-professionals that makes a great institution like YSU look like Loser U.

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8dbinnc(51 comments)posted 5 years ago

Where's all our Pro Union people?? Come on, try and defend this stupid move? Where are you?
Day 2 no pro union comments....classic

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9dbinnc(51 comments)posted 5 years ago

UNION BOYS AND GIRLS
WHERE ARE YOU?????

COME ON, TRY AND DEFEND THIS ONE

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10penguinswin(21 comments)posted 5 years ago

Ok, I'm an ACE Classified worker at YSU. Did I anticipate this bonus - NO - did I even think much about it NO. But people, the University negotiating team signed off on this one. Hey, I guess it's alright for GM Lordstown to to get outrageous pays and fantastic benefits - everyone cries when they think GM won't get a new product...."oh how this will hurt the valley."

Well dear friends and neighbors, our kids are the most important asset we have in this region and YSU is a damn good place to educate them. When classified staff dies, or otherwise leaves the university - no one new is hired - nope administration just divides that person's work among several existing classified staff addiing to the existing worker's burden. That is the truth!!!!

I am not a huge Union fan, but I had no choice but to pay Union dues when I came to work at YSU. Students are Number 1 in importance to me. All workers, faculty included, are the least paid of all the state university employees. We get less and less state funding from Strickland and that is why tuitition was raised.

This valley is grossly undereducated. Many of our students are first-time college graduates from their families - and that is not degrading the laborers of our community; however, maybe the non college graduates don't understand that getting this education just may help the Valley's kids get a good job..

Don't cry to me about the money in our bonus - I deserve it and you would too IF you could get hired here. (P.S. You have to take a civil service test prior to being hired)!!!!

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11penguinswin(21 comments)posted 5 years ago

One Last Thing. To Candy from Canfield - just where did you acquire your money to live in Canfield!!!!!! Live in Y-town like a lot of us do - then you can comment. Suburbanites like to sit back and bash anything and everything about the city. I bet you didn't send your kids to YSU - if you did, only after they flunked out of OSU! Blah! Blah! Blah!

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12penguinfan1(29 comments)posted 5 years ago

I would just like to comment on the comment by penguinswin:

GM is totally different, as it is a private company. YSU is a state funded university in the state of Ohio. That means that the money comes from he state. Well guess what? The state is in deep crap and the money YSU receives from the state could surely have gone to a btter place, no? I used to work there too, and I saw what some of the ACE people do. Some of them do nothing all day, so don't hand me that "I earned this." crap.

There are many classified employees who do have something to do with enrollment, but I'll bet there are more that have no meaningful interactions with the students.

Oh, wait, when I was a student, that shipping clerk was really important in my academic career. Never would have made it without him. Please!

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13CandyfromCanfield(172 comments)posted 5 years ago

I earn my money the old-fashioned way. I went to college (YSU), earned my degrees (I have several) and work at (wait for it penguinswin....) YSU! Yep, I'm probably your supervisor's supervisor! And by the way, you should be working during the day and not posting to Vindy.com. I may have to have you written up...but wait...you'd probably file another frivolous grievance against me!

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14YSUPenguin(30 comments)posted 5 years ago

These ACE employees don't deserve this bonus! They are overpaid enough as it is, especially considering most do not have degrees (other than an Associates, which is useless) but they continue to complain every chance they get. I work in an office at YSU and supervise ACE members who come in late, take extra-long lunches, sit at their desks and play on the internet and are constantly on personal phone calls. Yet they know they are protected by the union so they continue to behave in this way no matter how many times they are told about it. Seems to me they have a pretty good deal, but they feel they deserve this extra money because they worked "so hard" to increase enrollment. What a joke! The ones I know are bitter and act as if they are owed something since everyone seems to be against them. Please! I would love to see them out in the world beyond YSU and actually have to work for a living to see the salaries and lack of perks they are given on a daily basis. My guess is most of them wouldn't last a week. What a bunch of ungrateful, spoiled brats.

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15penguinswin(21 comments)posted 5 years ago

To Candy from Canfield, I work thru my lunch hour and that lunch hour can be anywhwere from 12-3 p.m. when I don't have a backlog of work or students in my class. Lunch hour today is from 1:15-2:15 p.m. And, if you are one of the supervisors of my supervisor - then you are a big part of the problem and you earn a heck of a lot more than my boss and certainly me.. Still didn't answer, sweet candy of

Canfield, why don't you support the community you live in with taxes for Youngstown School and eat in the downtown area. Well you probably have money to attend the Symphony. I don't.

I have never filed a grievance because my boss treats me with respect for my ability to do the job. I definitely earned the bonus.

To Pegunin Fan 1 - GM earned their bonus and extra crap - Give me a Break. They also make such an inferior car that it is ridiculous. Because we are a state job means we much be poor I guess, at least in your opinion. As for the shipping clerk - it does take a village and sometimes an army to educate people like you, I'll bet!

To YSUPenguin. I have a Bachelors and a portion of my masters from YSU; I worked in the public sector for a lot of years before coming to YSU and I definitely earn my money. If your ACE employees act like a bunch of malcontents, file a grievance and build a case for getting rid of them. Most administration past a dept. chair or direct supervisor at YSU is definitely part of the problem. We ALL should work for our students who are our customers.

Enough of this crap - lunch hour over.

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16penguinfan1(29 comments)posted 5 years ago

To Penguinswin - I did not say that GM employees earned their bonuses, I said that is a private company as opposed to a state run institution like YSU. My taxes go to pay YSU employees, they do not pay anyone at GM. What does the quality of the car have to do with anything? I never once mentioned their product.

What the hell does "Because we are a state job means we much be poor I guess, at least in your opinion" mean? No it doesn't mean we MUST be poor. What it means is that the state of Ohio's budget is very very poor this year. Next year will be worse. And YSU is giving 1.8 million dollars for an "Enrollment Incentive" to employees who have absolutely nothing to do with enrollment or retention for that matter.

You are right we all should work for our students. So, should the three other unions at YSU get the same $4500 bonus as the ACE members?

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17CandyfromCanfield(172 comments)posted 5 years ago

You fool...do you know how much money in taxes I pay to the city of Youngstown every year? Do you know how much I give to charity? Don't you DARE tell me I don't support the community! (Typical narrow-minded ACE thinking....) And actually, as you know very well, many ACE employees without degrees (your former president being one of them) make a heck of a lot more than many in middle management with real responsibility! And we actually help students! And, we like our jobs and work with the administration to make YSU a great institution! And we know with the economy being as it is, we're fortunate to have jobs at all! And we don't complain all the time about nothing! We make a positive contribution to the University and we have the respect of our peers, which few in ACE have at present! It is tiring having this argument with you because you and your ilk are so bitter and put upon. How many grievances has your unit filed with the administration this year? Last year? Your previous executive committee is at war with your current executive committee. You can't even agree on how to manage your own by-laws! And unless you work in Admissions and recruited these new students, or you work in registration, financial aid, or academic advising, you DID NOT EARN THIS INCENTIVE!! And, tell me, are you going to give any of it to the capital campaign or to a scholarship fund? (I keep asking you and you never respond? Why?) Of course not! Take a look at the YSU Annual Report and find the list of donors who are ACE employees. Go ahead...give me some names! I give every year to support my employer and scholarship funds, which is more than I can say for you. The more you write, the more the public will see and learn what you are all about, and trust me, it's not a good thing. You smear the good name of the rest of us who work to make YSU great. I am proud of my degrees, the position I hold, the work I do for the students. My work ethic, positive attitude and desire to always do my best ensures my continued employment at YSU. I've earned the respect of my peers and colleagues and respect those who work to earn mine, which, quite frankly, is more than I can say for many of you in ACE. (By the way, that $4,500 bonus you may get at the end of the year will buy you some symphony tickets, for sure! I suggest you go and get yourself some culture! You may feel better about yourself and the world around you. [You know what they say about music....] The Symphony season is divine this year! And for a real treat, check out The Mikado which is scheduled to be performed in the spring. That's a YSU production, so the tickets should be fairly inexpensive. I'm sure you'll be able to afford a ticket to that. LOL!!!)

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18penguinswin(21 comments)posted 5 years ago

Lunch Time. CandyfromCanfield (BTW - I know who you are). Such venom and hatred. Your pretty little bottom should be fired. I live in Y-town, support the University scholarship annual fund drive, YSU theater, YSU planetarium, YSU Dana concerts and YSU sports teams - but not the scoundrel of a past president for ACE. In case you forgot, the majority of ACE people elected a new president! There is a danger in lumping everyone together. Get a life. This is so a waste of my lunch hour and your behind is toast if I tell your direct superior you are checking out Vindy.com during your work day which I am SURE is 24 hours long. Goodbye and Good Riddance, you aren't worth my effort any longer. Gotta cut your losses when the opposition is stupid and from Canfield to boot! You go girl! - Blah! Blah! Blah!

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