An African American woman is currently the highest paid college president in the nation. The idea was to make the comparison between the pay of the POTUS and college presidents.

Here’s more about the subject of pay for college presidents by focusing on Dr. Shirley Ann Jackson, according to an analysis of the most recently available data published Monday by the Chronicle of Higher Education.

Dr. Shirley Ann Jackson, president of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, N.Y., earned nearly $1.6 million in total compensation in fiscal 2008. She was followed by David Sargent at Suffolk University in Boston, who made $1.5 million. However, one-third of his compensation had been reported as deferred compensation last year and counted as salary this year — an example of the difficulty of making straightforward compensation comparisons, reports the Associated Press.

Both are among a record 23 presidents who received more than $1 million in total compensation in fiscal 2008, according to the data. A record one in four in the study of 419 colleges’ mandatory IRS filings made at least $500,000.

Dr. Jackson holds a Ph.D. in theoretical elementary particle physics from M.I.T. and a S.B. in physics from M.I.T. Her research specialty is in theoretical condensed matter physics, especially layered systems, and the physics of opto-electronic materials.

Described by Time Magazine (2005) as “perhaps the ultimate role model for women in science,” President Jackson has held senior leadership positions in government, industry, research, and academe.

In April, 2009, President Obama appointed Dr. Jackson to serve on the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology. PCAST is an advisory group of the nation’s leading scientists and engineers who will advise the President and Vice President and formulate policy in the many areas where understanding of science, technology, and innovation is key to strengthening the economy and forming policy that works for the American people.

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