Breaking Campus News. Launching Media Careers.
University of Florida has 1 administrator for every 4 undergrads

ANALYSIS: Administrative staff grew by 12 percent while enrollment barely budged

The University of Florida employs one administrator for every four undergrad students, according to an analysis by The College Fix.

The Fix analyzed data from the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System and found the public university in Gainesville added 1,000 new administrator jobs in the past 10 years.

In the 2022-23 school year, the university employed 7,376 administrators, or 250 per 1,000 undergraduate students, a 12 percent increase from a decade prior. By comparison, the university’s enrollment grew by just three percent during the same time period.

The University of Florida employed 6,745 administrators and support staff employees in the 2013-14 school year. This includes student and academic affairs divisions, IT, public relations, administrative support, maintenance, and legal and other non-academic departments. This worked out to 223 administrators per 1,000 students.

Florida State University is similar in size to the University of Florida – but FSU employs one administrator for every ten undergraduate students.

This administrative overhead includes the university’s public relations team, none of whom responded to multiple emailed requests for comment sent in the past weeks.

Director of Communications Brittany Wise did not respond to four emails and a voicemail left in the past six weeks that asked for comment on administrative growth.

Vice President for Communications James Wegmann and Associate Vice President for Communications Steve Orlando did not respond to four emails sent in the past month that asked for comment on the administrative growth. The Fix also asked if President Ben Sasse had plans to look into cutting positions and for any additional context on the data.

Some of this administrative overhead is related to the university’s “diversity, equity, and inclusion” initiatives, though this may be headed to reversal.

The latest data shows that UF’s DEI initiatives consisted of the equivalent of 24 full-time employees. DEI initiatives cost the university $5.3 million, $3.3 million of which is state funded.

Chief Diversity Officer Marsha McGriff made $300,000 per year as of November 2022, according to public records.

Last year, Florida’s university system announced its intentions to revise DEI initiatives.

More can be done, political scientist says

A political scientist who researches DEI said the public university is making some changes.

“UF has made progress, especially in building alternatives to DEI programming. It has invested significantly into the Hamilton Center, which appears to be a model academic center for classical education in the country,” Scott Yenor with the Claremont Institute told The Fix via email.

“The system is also changing its general education requirements to better rid core courses of obviously partisan left-wing academic departments,” the Boise State University professor said.

“UF’s central DEI office has also changed hands too,” he said. “Its former DEI Provost has left the university.”

Other changes are “cosmetic,” Yenor said. For example, the law school’s “Asst. Dean of Faculty Diversity and Community Relations is now Asst. Dean for Experiential Learning & Engagement,” he told The Fix.

He had similar criticism of the pledge by 28 Florida university presidents to cut DEI, calling it “quite modest.”

“Nothing in the statement cuts to the core of decisively ending wokeness in higher education,” Yenor wrote for Newsweek in February 2023.

“There were no promises to even trim the number of DEI administrators,” he wrote. “Neither are efforts to recalibrate curricula mentioned.”

“That such proverbial table scraps stir conservative hopes is a sign of desperation after decades of ineffectual reforms to higher education. For anything to actually change, a much bolder approach is needed.”

MORE: Northwestern employs 1 administrator for every 2 undergrads

IMAGE: Katherine Welles/Shutterstock

Like The College Fix on Facebook / Follow us on Twitter

Please join the conversation about our stories on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Reddit, MeWe, Rumble, Gab, Minds and Gettr.

About the Author
College Fix Contributor Emily Fowler is a student at The Master's University, where she studies music. She previously received an associate's degree in arts and sciences at Wabash Valley College. She also writes for Campus Reform, where she is a senior correspondent.