Money and Self-Esteem

Rae Nishi nishir at
Thu Sep 18 10:56:59 EST 1997

In article <5vpn98$3ac$1 at>
nishir at (Rae Nishi) writes:

> For example, in biomedical sciences, competitive salaries for
> asst profs (PhDs) are $50-60K.

Let me clarify some confusion regarding salaries (remember I'm speaking
from the perspective of biological sciences).  The number I gave above
is for full salaries over 12 mos.  For most medical schools you are
offered a 12 mo salary, and you are typically expected to pay for some
portion of it from a grant.  For example, 50% of my salary comes from
my grant.  If I lose my grant, my "tenure guarantee" is 75% of my
salary; in reality, unless we hit significant fiscal hardships, I will
probably still get 100% of my salary even if I don't have a grant (for
some unspecified, finite period of time).  Others in my medical school
have their full salary guaranteed by tenure.  At undergraduate
institutions, the salary you are offered is for 9 mos, and you are
expected to get a grant that will pay your summer salary (ie., 3 mos). 
Therefore, if your base salary is $40,000, you can add $13,000 from
your grant to cover the summer, bringing your actual salary to $53,000.

Many institutions that require you to get a significant chunk of your
salary from your grant will usually offer you a "deal" that covers your
full salary (hard + expected soft $$) for a period of time (eg., 3 yrs)
so that you can have time to get your grant funded.  This is part of
your "start up package".

For a med school those starting salaries for beginning level asst profs
is real.  I know, because I hit the ceiling when I found out that as an
associate prof I didn't make much more than that.  Starting salaries
are always competitive because schools have to compete with each other
for applicants.  Our starting level of $50K is actually rather low in
comparison to other, better known schools.  The problem is, if the cost
of living and promotion increases aren't adequate, the salaries "run
down" at the upper levels. 

Rae Nishi, PhD
Dept. Cell & Developmental Biology
Oregon Health Sciences University
Portland Oregon 
nishir at
**that's Orygun, NOT Ora-Gone**

More information about the Womenbio mailing list