Tragedy of the NIH Commons
January 23, 2013
From the San Diego Union Tribune:
…a fresh look under new Chancellor Pradeep Khosla. The discussions will last into next year and are likely to lead to expansion. Khosla has said that UCSD should be closer to UC Berkeley and UCLA when it comes to graduate student enrollment. About 30 percent of the students at those two schools are graduate students. The figure is roughly 20 percent at UCSD, and only about one-third of those students are Ph.D candidates.
Khosla told U-T San Diego that the campus probably could add 1,000 doctoral students at no additional cost because their tuition and stipends are paid from the research grants obtained by faculty. UCSD gets about $1 billion a year in research grants, ranking the campus among the top 10 nationally.
The part that I bolded tells the tale. The tale of our recent history during the NIH doubling in which all and sundry sought to increase their University standing and prestige “for free” on the Federal grant dime.
Khosla appears to be remarkably out of touch with current reality if he thinks this continues to be a winning strategy.
Perhaps he should survey his faculty and ask them who anticipates being able to swing more grad student positions (for 5-6 years) in the future based on their grants.