Written by Nicholas Vetrisek
After a massive scandal involving CSU San Marcos Dean Graham Oberem where he was documented spending university money on $500 chauffeured limousine rides and $110 steaks among other things, the university has apparently decided that he still deserves a paycheck.
Despite the fact that he no longer works as provost at the university, he’s still apparently being paid by them. The figures say he is paid $5,500 for “preparing to teach,” in addition to his six-figure pension. According to Margaret Chantung, Associate Vice President in the CSUSM Office of Communications Margaret Chantung, Oberem is doing research and planning to return to teaching in the fall.
The university appears to be accepting of his actions because even though Oberem has been retired since June 30 of last year, he is part of the Faculty Early Retirement Program (FERP), which requires approval by the university and can be rescinded if deemed necessary.
This shows the level of corruption that is tolerated by the university officials with someone who has blatantly wasted their money, yet they still choose to employ him despite the fact that they no longer have any obligation to. If anything, the university is obligated to not pay Oberem. Above all, this tolerance of blatant waste shows disrespect more to the students than anyone else.
As tuition and other expenses increase and students struggle to get by while taking on more and more debt just to get an education, university officials can waste the school’s money however they please. The problem with this situation is symbolic more than anything because it shows that the officials at the top can spend university money on $500 chauffeur rides and pay more for a steak than many students can afford for an entire week. All while the students are expected to just pay up.
It sets a poor standard for the university and if they want to rid themselves of this image, Oberem cannot be allowed to stay on the payroll.