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Students question UO president's possible $100K bonus

The bonus for President Michael Schill, who makes $720,000 a year, comes just weeks after graduate employees were fighting for basic benefits and a livable wage.

Posted: Dec 9, 2019 6:16 PM

EUGENE, Ore. -- The University of Oregon Board of Trustees plans to meet Tuesday to consider awarding a $100,000 bonus to president Michael Schill, but students are speaking out against the proposed bonus.

Chair Chuck Lillis and Vice Chair Ginevra Ralph are recommending the approval of the bonus based on Schill's performance.

"He's already making $700,000, why does he need that $100,000 bonus?" said student Daisy Caballero. 

Schill is actually making $720,000 a year, and the bonus would come just weeks after graduate employees were fighting for basic benefits and a livable wage. 

RELATED: UO GRADUATE TEACHERS PICKET, HOPE FOR AGREEMENT ON NEW CONTRACT

"With the GE's on strike trying to get basic benefits, I thought it was kinda interesting that he could get a bonus while they're still fighting for just minimum living standards I guess," said student Emily Wright.

This summer, the state approved the university's request for a tuition increase, increasing the in-state rate by nearly 7%.

The University of Oregon released a statement saying that if Schill does receive the bonus, he will be donating $75,000 of it into a scholarship fund named after his father, just as he did last year in his mother's name.

"Until that's guaranteed or not, I don't think the money should be given to him, in his hands, without knowledge, guaranteed knowledge, that that money is going to go towards students' education," said student Niyah Thomason. 

Thomason said the bonus comes at a strange time, when students all throughout the university are struggling financially.

"I think a lot of students today are struggling with student debt and worrying about if they can even go to college because of the chance of debt," said Thomason.

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