The low income was confirmed by Vo Van Sen, president of the university, at a meeting with the press on the occasion of the 60th anniversary of the school’s establishment on September 12.
The school intended to give allowances to the lecturers, but 30 of them refused because they have extra income from family-run businesses. More than 30 other lecturers are still receiving low salaries.
VND4 million is the basic salary the state pays to university lecturers. Lecturers can get other income from extra teaching and scientific research projects.
According to Sen, the school has reduced the in-service training scale. It now trains 3,000 students instead of 8,000 in the past.
In-service training is considered a big source of income for schools and lecturers. A local newspaper reported that though some universities cannot enroll students full-time, they can survive well with in-service training.
In the case of HCMC University of Social Sciences and Humanities, Sen said the in-service training reduction has not affected lecturers’ income because they can earn money from extra jobs.
He admitted that many lecturers at the school teach at other schools as well, but said it is impossible to prohibit lecturers from doing so.
“We cannot prohibit lecturers from taking extra jobs to earn more money,” he said.
“We cannot ask our lecturers to devote themselves wholeheartedly to the school. Even the International University, where lecturers can receive over VND20 million a month, cannot prohibit its lecturers from taking extra jobs at other schools,” he said.
Therefore, Sen said, if lecturers fulfill their number of lecturing hours, scientific research and scientific articles published, they must be recognized as ‘fulfilling tasks’ and have the right to take extra jobs.
A university lecturer in Hanoi also commented that it is an impossible mission to prohibit university lecturers from teaching at many schools.
“The pay from the state is too low to cover their basic needs and they have to earn extra money,” he explained, adding that the money they earn from ‘extra jobs’ is far higher than the official salary.
The lecturers said the demand for qualified lecturers is very high now. Many private schools have been established in recent years, but the number of lecturers has not increased proportionally. Therefore, private schools have to ‘borrow’ lecturers from state-owned schools.