Saturday, May 31, 2014

Saturday Links

The federal government wants to rate colleges and universities.  Here are the highlights of this New York Times article, at least for me.  When they travel to Washington, this is the reception they get.

"“It’s like rating a blender,” Jamienne Studley, a deputy under secretary at the Education Department, said to the college presidents after a meeting in the department’s Washington headquarters in November."
 First, I imagine these school presidents are used to being around the rich and powerful of their communities. In DC they get to talk with the employee one level above intern of a cabinet agency that nobody gives a shit about.  Then, they're insulted by that former intern.  HA!

I also like the protests about how nobody can distill all the intricate and complex aspects of education into a single rating.  I don't know why the are complaining.  It works so well for judging faculty teaching.  Maybe the Education Department could start a website like RateMyUniversity.com.  (Actually, that's already taken but it redirects to another site.)

OK, enough ranting.  Let's get serious and address some important news.

College just got a lot less funny for some students.  Kinki University changed its name.  This isn't the first time that a school has changed its name to avoid smirks and giggles.  What's up with you, Ball State?

As you probably know, Dr. Maya Angelou passed away this week.  Here are a few things you may not know about her. 

1.  She does not have a doctorate but uses the title "Doctor" based on honorary degrees.  (Apparently, there is a bipartisan annoyance with honorary titles.)

2.  Although lacking a doctorate, she was a professor at Wake Forest University.  Can you imagine getting to listen to Maya Angelou speak for three hours a week?  As somebody said in the American Conservative article linked above, she could read a grocery list and make it sound beautiful.  Anyway, think of how her students must have loved it.  Er, they didn't.

Finally, here's one for our friends up in the Great White North.  You would think that the cold climate would give university presidents tougher skin.  Poor guy!  I wonder how he would react if some low level government official compared his university to a blender.

Have a good weekend!

There was lots of academic-related news this week.  Tomorrow, we'll cover faculty crimes.


No comments:

Post a Comment