Baylor named on ‘Best Colleges to Work For’ list

by Jade Mardirosian
Staff Writer

The Chronicle of Higher Education recently named Baylor to its honor roll of great colleges to work for, for the first time. Thirty national universities categorized as large four-year colleges were named to the honor roll, among them Sam Houston State University and Texas Christian University.

“The benefits and the compensation that we offer our faculty and staff are very competitive, which makes it a great place to work,” John Whelan, associate vice president for human resources at Baylor, said. “In addition, one of the things we have found is that the family environment at Baylor is what draws a lot of people to come and work at Baylor. [Faculty and staff] enjoy the overall culture of Baylor and for that reason they want to stay for a long time.”

Honor roll status for four-year colleges was given to the 10 institutions in each size classification that were cited most often across all of the recognition categories.

“Baylor made our honor roll by being recognized in the top group in six or more categories,” Josh Fishman, senior editor at The Chronicle of Higher Education, said. “[Baylor] was in fact recognized in 10 categories, those are categories in which Baylor excelled, compared to the 300-odd colleges that participated in the survey.”

The 10 categories in which Baylor was recognized include: collaborative governance, confidence in senior leadership, supervisor or department chair relationship, compensation and benefits, job satisfaction, respect and appreciation, professional/career-development programs, teaching environment, facilities workspace and security and work/life balance.

Whelan cites the senior leadership at Baylor, which was a category the school was recognized in, as a key factor for why Baylor is a great school to work for.

“Under the leadership of Ken Starr, and Elizabeth Davis as well, they have really set us on a course to continue to improve as a university,” Whelan said. “With the new strategic plan coming out I think they are going to make Baylor even more exciting. Following their leadership is the best thing for Baylor to continue to improve.”

According to The Chronicle of Higher Education, this year’s survey is based on responses from nearly 44,000 people at 310 institutions. Each institution included in the survey was asked to submit a list of full-time employees who were then randomly selected across the three categories of administration, faculty, and exempt professional staff. Sample sizes between 400 and 600 people were taken from each institution.

The survey consisted of 60 statements where employees responded on a five-point scale, ranging from strongly agree to strongly disagree.

Fishman said the survey included statements such as: ‘I have a good sense of my institution’s mission,’ ‘My compensation level is fair’ or ‘All things considered, this is a good place to work.

The survey also asked respondents to rate their satisfaction with 18 benefits, answer 15 demographic questions, and respond to two open-ended questions.

This is the first time Baylor has been named to The Chronicle of Higher Education’s honor roll. Baylor was previously recognized as a great college to work for in 2009.

“Hopefully [being recognized on the honor roll] will draw prospective faculty and staff [to]see what a great place it is to work,” Whelan said. “People are really drawn to the mission of Baylor University and want to get here.”