Port: NDSU has a toxic alumni problem, and the Legislature should look to fix it


MINOT, N.D. — Former NDSU president Dean Bresciani’s egregious golden parachute has become a political hot potato in Bismarck .

After years of scandals and petulance, not to mention a burgeoning financial crisis his successor, David Cook, is currently grappling with, the State Board of Higher Education fired Bresciani. But the board also gave him a cushy new gig collecting a big salary to teach classes about the job he was fired from.

Starting later this year, with the fall semester, Bresciani will, after enjoying about a year and a half of paid sabbatical, be teaching two classes as a tenured professor: one called the Modern College Presidency; the other on the History of Higher Education. If you believe that students will be flocking to take these courses, I’ve got some oceanfront property in Arizona I’d like to sell you.

For this nonsense, Bresciani is being paid $165,000 per year.

It’s a lot of money for not a lot of work, and now it’s becoming a sticking point as the state’s higher education leaders make their budget asks in Bismarck. The Board of Higher Education approved this payout as a part of NDSU’s budget, but an appropriations subcommittee in the state House has approved an amendment asking the North Dakota University System to reimburse NDSU.

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