Analysis: State taxpayers spending $108K per Northeastern Illinois U. graduate
State taxpayers spend $40 million per year subsidizing Northeastern Illinois University (NEIU), but fewer than five percent of its students manage to graduate on time.
That’s according to Illinois Board of Higher Education (IBHE) and U.S. Department of Education (DOE) data analyzed by Chicago City Wire.
The DOE’s National Center for Education Statistics tracked NEIU freshmen starting in 2007 and 2009.
By 2011, just four percent of the 2007 entrants had graduated.
By 2013, just five percent of the 2009 entrants had graduated.
NEIU, 5500 N. St. Louis in Chicago's North Park neighborhood on its far north side, currently has 8,095 undergraduate students, or approximately 2,024 per class, according to IBHE.
$108K per four-year graduate
At the school’s historic rate of performance, just 323 of the NEIU students who entered the school as freshmen last August will graduate in May 2020.
Some 1,700 won’t.
That means state taxpayers, who pay about $4,300 annually per enrolled NEIU student, spend the equivalent of $108,000 per graduate.
The school spent $151 million on operations in 2015, including $39.8 million (26 percent) from state taxpayers and $36.2 million (24 percent) from the federal government.
Given six years to finish a four year program, 20 percent of 2007 entrants at NEIU got degrees.
Given eight years, 27 percent graduated.
The school’s federal subsidies have been the subject of scrutiny.
A 2012 report by the Illinois Legislative Audit Commission found that NEIU had problems tracking how many students it actually had enrolled, which inflated the amount of federal taxpayer subsidy it received.
“(NEIU) did not properly identify all students who withdrew from the University,” the report said. “(NEIU) did not determine or return the unearned portion of (federal) aid provided to students who withdrew from the University, resulting in inaccuracies in the amounts reported in their financial statements and noncompliance with federal regulators.”
“The university does not have adequate procedures in place to determine if a student began attendance in a payment period, “ it said.
The report also slammed NEIU for failing to require faculty and graduate assistants to file time sheets, as is required by state law.
“University procedures did not require time reporting documenting the time spent each day on official state business,” it said.
Enrollment down, tuition up
Since the 2011-12 school year, NEIU has raised undergraduate tuition 21 percent, from $8,397 to $10,138 for undergraduates.
Over the same period, the school’s undergraduate enrollment fell 15 percent, from 9,421 to 8,095.
Despite this, NEIU used eminent domain last year to seize private property adjacent to the school, where it plans to build dorms.
Before recently announcing it would layoff 9.5 percent of its workforce, NEIU had 1,887 employees, or one for every four students. That includes 787 faculty members who earned a collective $43.3 million in 2016, before taxpayer-funded benefits and pension payments.
NEIU's acting president, Richard J. Helldobler, says the school needs to cut another $1.8 million if it is going to open next year.
Salaries are the schools biggest line item.
Last year, NEIU had 112 faculty who earned more than $100,000, before pension and benefits expense, according to IBHE.
Helldobler earned $291,115 last year. His predecessor, Sharon K. Hahs, earned $291,115. She retired in July 2016.
100K+ earners at Northeastern Illinois University
Leaders at Northeastern Illinois Univ. say the school will close if it doesn't get more state subsidies. The school receives $40 million per year from state taxpayers.
How much does it pay its top faculty?
|Sharon K. Hahs||President||$291,114.91|
|Richard J. Helldobler||Vice President||$199,788.03|
|Alireza Dorestani||Associate Professor||$187,431.56|
|Victoria A. Roman-Lagunas||Vice President||$181,443.84|
|Michael J. Pierick||Vice President||$176,503.86|
|Melissa Reardon Henry||Vice President||$173,043.00|
|Jian Li||Associate Professor||$172,861.39|
|Sara Aliabadi||Assistant Professor||$165,347.44|
|Nont Dhiensiri||Senior Officer||$164,574.20|
|Michael D. Bedell||Senior Officer||$164,092.50|
|Sundaram Dorai||Unit Director||$161,378.58|
|Wamucii E. Njogu||Senior Officer||$160,921.56|
|Maureen D. Gillette||Senior Officer||$159,185.28|
|Charles A. Funk||Associate Professor||$158,111.05|
|Shubin Xu||Assistant Professor||$153,784.17|
|Marcelo O. Sztainberg||Senior Officer||$151,327.18|
|Daniel Lopez||Vice President||$149,142.72|
|Lidia Z. Filus||Unit Director||$148,392.73|
|Maria T. Garreton||Unit Director||$148,379.91|
|Azim Zanjani Haj||Assistant Professor||$147,654.62|
|Wendy M. Stack||Vice President||$147,094.74|
|Hong G. Chen||Associate Professor||$145,113.38|
|Conrad W. Worrill||Unit Director||$144,353.19|
|Essam Elshafie||Associate Professor||$143,376.09|
|Michael J. Stern||Senior Officer||$143,028.99|
|Peter G. Kimmel||Unit Director||$142,089.48|
|Mark P. McKernin||Vice President||$141,375.09|
|Dilek G. Yunlu||Assistant Professor||$140,970.80|
|Xiaohong Wang||Assistant Professor||$139,639.44|
|Stijepko Tokic||Unit Director||$138,669.57|
|Ai-Ru Yen||Associate Professor||$137,552.47|
|Rasoul Afifi||Associate Professor||$137,320.57|
|Charletta Gutierrez||Associate Professor||$134,304.14|
|Narendar V. Rao||Professor||$133,227.84|
|Chunwei Xian||Assistant Professor||$132,940.39|
|Judith D. Kaplan-Weinger||Professor||$132,232.06|
|Heung D. Kim||Professor||$132,086.50|
|Philip W. Gwanyama||Professor||$131,466.06|
|Craig Duetsch||Vice President||$130,124.58|
|Janice M. Harring-Hendon||Vice President||$129,826.47|
|Suresh Singh||Assistant Professor||$129,709.94|
|Nancy Medina||Vice President||$129,690.75|
|Carlos Melian||Senior Officer||$126,798.75|
|Liesl V. Downey||Vice President||$126,104.80|
|Robert B. Filipp||Vice President||$124,981.74|
|Emmanuel M. Nyadroh||Assistant Professor||$123,782.35|
|Pillai Deepa Anil||Assistant Professor||$123,639.97|
|Cynthia G. Moran||Professor||$122,102.47|
|Sargon J. Al-Bazi||Unit Director||$121,671.33|
|Ann M. McNabb||Unit Director||$119,600.43|
|Suleyma Perez||Unit Director||$119,393.58|
|Jean T. Potillo||Unit Director||$119,044.03|
|Michael M. Dizon||Senior Officer||$118,341.06|
|Francisco D. Iacobelli||Assistant Professor||$117,679.61|
|Erick J. Howenstine||Unit Director||$116,968.65|
|Blase E. Masini||Unit Director||$116,608.05|
|Richard Kilpatrick||Assistant Professor||$116,516.53|
|Timothy R. Libretti||Unit Director||$116,061.07|
|Brett Stockdill||Unit Director||$115,358.25|
|James L. Thompson||Unit Director||$115,170.53|
|Jade Stanley||Unit Director||$114,802.87|
|Moira E. Stuart||Associate Professor||$114,552.14|
|Huong T. Le||Assistant Professor||$114,048.56|
|Saba Ayman-Nolley||Unit Director||$113,680.47|
|Cris E. Toffolo||Unit Director||$112,492.23|
|F M. Specht||Senior Officer||$111,582.90|
|Louise A. Bohr||Professor||$110,753.14|
|Ozair Noor||Unit Director||$110,426.46|
|Jeffrey Hill||Unit Director||$109,882.65|
|Katrina E. Bell-Jordan||Senior Officer||$109,395.00|
|John W. Cappeck||Unit Director||$109,329.72|
|Nancy A. Matthews||Professor||$108,916.57|
|Brian Schultz||Unit Director||$107,887.80|
|John Kasmer||Unit Director||$107,711.85|
|Ellen S. Cannon||Professor||$107,376.62|
|Paul A. Schroeder||Unit Director||$107,035.11|
|Lawrence N. Berlin||Unit Director||$106,890.27|
|Patrick B. Miller||Professor||$106,216.48|
|Bradley R. Ginn||Unit Director||$106,210.50|
|Charles N. Pistorio||Unit Director||$105,733.14|
|Lynn H. Bush||Professor||$105,657.58|
|Rodney G. Higginbotham||Professor||$105,601.07|
|Lisa A. Hollis-Sawyer||Associate Professor||$105,577.32|
|Richard W. Hallett||Professor||$104,265.49|
|Sung D. Kim||Assistant Professor||$104,257.36|
|Steven M. Wolk||Professor||$103,977.62|
|Paulo H. Acioli||Unit Director||$103,452.33|
|Denise L. Cloonan||Professor||$103,159.05|
|Richard S. Cofer||Unit Director||$103,017.57|
|Sandra D. Beyda||Unit Director||$102,831.30|
|Jeanine Ntihirageza||Unit Director||$102,656.56|
|Fe L. Lenon||Unit Director||$102,433.50|
|Emina A. Stojkovic||Associate Professor||$102,169.57|
|Vicki F. Byard||Professor||$101,598.34|
|Gerald D. Green||Senior Officer||$101,439.00|
|Job E. Ngwe||Professor||$101,427.37|
|Kenneth T. Nicholson||Associate Professor||$100,915.48|
|Rachel Adler||Assistant Professor||$100,870.81|
Source: Illinois Board of Higher Education