A psychology teaching fellow Tuesday rescinded his offer to pay students $50 to sign up for his class, citing negative reactions from University administrators.
Daniel P. Oran '87 had attempted to attract new students to Psychology 1320 to fill an extra section, which would have increased his salary by roughly $3000. Oran said that signs advertising the offer generated more than 30 phone calls and that a number of interested students attended the class Tuesday.
Oran said that he decided to retract the offer after speaking about it with several University officials, whom he declined to name. "Reaction from administrators was negative," he said.
Professor of Psychology Phillip T. Stone said that Oran took a few minutes early in the class to explain that the offer was rescinded and to apologize for the incident. The 12 students who had appeared for the class as a result of the advertisement then left, Stone said.
As a result of the confusion caused by the offer, there will be no additional enrollment permitted in the course, Oran said.
Oran said he had used "poor judgment" in making his offer. But he added that he hoped the incident had highlighted some problems with graduate students' financial support. "Clearly this was done out of need, not greed," he said.
Teaching fellows often do not know what their salaries will be until well after shopping period, since their pay depends on the number of sections they teach.
Oran said that he has spoken with many other teaching fellows concerned with salaries and sectioning. "Not all I talked to agreed to my approach, but no one disagreed with the need for a complete overhaul of the graduate financial system," he said.