J. Paul Robinson, chairman of Purdue University’s faculty senate, strode through the halls of a 10- story concrete-and-glass administrative tower.
“I have no idea what these people do,” said Robinson, waving his hand across a row of offices, his voice rising.
It's great to finally see faculty Proxmiring* the bureaucrats. All I can do is salute, and skip down to the meat:
Purdue has a $313,000-a-year acting provost and six vice and associate vice provosts, including a $198,000 chief diversity officer. It employs 16 deans and 11 vice presidents, among them a $253,000 marketing officer and a $433,000 business school chief.And of course, a link to the classic 2010 Goldwater Report , a quick tour of a few other colleges, and back to the land of Pete:
Professors also question Purdue’s brand spending, led by Teri Lucie Thompson, a former insurance executive who is the school’s $253,000-a-year vice president for marketing and media and chief marketing officer.
A recent campaign played with Purdue’s nickname of “boilermakers,” or factory workers who made steel boilers in the heartland. The marketing department came up with the slogan: “We are Purdue. Makers, all. What we make moves the world forward.”
The athletic department also tried to make over Purdue Pete, the school’s mascot, a muscle-bound, hard-hatted boilermaker with a hammer. Last year, football fans gave a chilly reception to a softer-looking Pete, produced at a cost of $25,000.
“He was booed off the field,” said Charles Bouman, a Purdue professor of electrical and computer engineering.
Not counting the Pete makeover, which was killed after two days, the rebranding campaign cost $500,000. That figure included $300,000 for broader brand research, which will be used for as long as a decade, said Chris Sigurdson, assistant vice president for external relations. Purdue said it uses donations, not tax or tuition money, for marketing.
Let's face it - dropping a shot in a beer is just nasty. The Marquette Margaritas have a much easier branding issue. As far as marketing?
Every time a Dean, Provost or VP slot is eliminated, a kitten gets its wings.
*For the kidz, Proxmire was a senator who liked to cut research funds by picking out studies with funny titles and waving them around in public.