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  • Confessions of a Community College Dean

    In which a veteran of cultural studies seminars in the 1990s moves into academic administration and finds himself a married suburban father of two. Foucault, plus lawn care.

Friday Fragments
November 29, 2012 - 9:49pm

This did my heart good. Apparently, the academic major outside of STEM fields with the highest lifetime salary payoff is government. As a poli sci Ph.D., I say this news should be shared far and wide.  

(Let’s not focus too much on the “proxy for pre-law” thing.  Let me enjoy the moment...)

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Governor Scott, of Florida, is trying to jawbone community colleges into offering bachelor’s degrees for $10,000.  The story in the Orlando Sentinel is unintentionally hilarious.

The killer quote:

At issue is whether any real savings will be had. While Scott seemed to indicate costs of programs should be cut to come up with the $10,000 cap, proposals by Central Florida colleges instead called for tuition discounts to students who entered one particular program at each school.
Valencia's Bachelor of Science in electrical and computer engineering wouldn't be less expensive to operate, Shugart indicated, but would simply rely less on student tuition and draw more from the college's other revenues.


Sure, we can run some degrees cheaply!  We’ll just siphon money from the other ones!

*headdesk*

If we want real cost savings, we need to reinvent the model.  This is just political theater.

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The kids let me know that when I introduced myself and the rest of the family, I should have mentioned The Dog.  The Dog remained silent on the issue, which might have seemed classy if she weren’t hiding under our bed with her hind leg sticking out like a furry chicken leg.

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After a rough week on campus, it was restorative to attend an end-of-semester celebration for the service learning program.  I didn’t realize just how much I needed a reminder of the good that we do on a daily basis.  

Perspective sometimes comes from unexpected places.  This time, it came from local high school students pairing up with our culinary students and showing off the healthy cooking techniques they had learned.  I’ll take it.

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And sometimes perspective comes from less welcome sources.  My Mom is having heart surgery on Friday, so I’m heading down to Delaware to take care of her during the early stage of recuperation.  

Hearing your Mom say that she “got her affairs in order,” just in case, casts a rough week in a very different light.

Campus conflicts come and go, but Mom will always be Mom.
 

 

 

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