Dr. Mildred Garcia is the current president of California State University at Fullerton.  Dr. Garcia is a leader within the Latino community and has held high position in education prior to her appointment at CSUF.  I believe having a minority as the president is better than the typical old white guy.  I’m sure if the president of CSUF was white, no one would be complaining.  I mean old white men are the image of executive jobs in this country.  Do old white guys do a better job?  It is safe to assume that we all believe so and would not investigate it even if we were skeptical.  In my opinion, I enjoy seeing minorities in executive jobs.  First reason is that it inspirer the younger generations to work hard.  Second reason is that I believe minorities in high position work harder than their counter-part.  Third reason is if someone is going to be paid $324,500 with living and car allowance, I sure as hell will side with the minority because it gives me hope that one day maybe I would be paid that much.  If I got paid that much, I’m moving to the coast.  The salary is properly not going to get my feet in the water but getting my feet in the sand is more than enough.

The majority the public disagrees with Dr. Garcia’s salary.  It is easy to see why they dissent.  A public employee with a six figure salary plus living and car allowance is insane.  Public employees serve the public; they are not supposes to take from the public especially when every dollar that goes into their pocket belong to tax payers.  The public is outrage.  The state is rolling back on admission to Cal State Universities.  The window of opportunity for students to pursuit higher education is closing. Tuition is increasing every year.  Students who pay for their own education are left with a dilemma.  Do I freeze my academic pursuit for the time being?  The question is quite hard to answer.  Many students come to campus and all they see is a gloomy atmosphere surrounding their school.  They question the policy and process of the educational system that function for so long, and yet, now seem to be like a broken cog.  The students have the right to be angry.  The sole purpose of the system was to serve them and it isn’t doing its job.  Change must come; however, anger, like a knife, must be aim in the right direction.

Dr. Garcia should not be blame for having a high paying job.  She was hired for a position with a set salary.  She did receive a 10% bump in salary and increase in living and travel allowances and she deserves it because of her academic accomplishments.  If we had put as much time and gotten as much degrees as her, we would want to be paid as much as her if not more.  She cannot simply give back money and even if she did where would that money go.  I can guarantee that it would not go to the students.  My guess is that it would go into the pocket of other staff or into some program that no one cares about.  The money can be turn into scholarship for a few students; however, it does not really fix anything.  A few students will be able to continue school.  What about the other students?  Will have to drop out?  Fairness comes into question.  Even if Dr. Garcia works for free, I do not think it will solve anything.  Since the knowledge of Dr. Garcia’s salary became public, everyone is pointing their fingers at her.  They blame her for taking a salary bump in this hard economic state.  Fixing the Cal State system needs to be done at the highest level.  The public needs to fix California before they start looking at the Cal State system.

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About ocbarrios

Professor for Cal State Fullerton's Barrio Studies class for Fall 2011 semester

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