Provost Prose

Provost Prose

A provost examines the world on campus and in higher ed.

October 21, 2012 - 6:00pm
The Presidential Debate at Hofstra went off without a hitch and more importantly will clearly be a significant moment in terms of who will be the next President of the United States. 
October 7, 2012 - 5:18pm
In 2008, when Hofstra hosted the third Presidential debate, I received an e-mail from a person I attended high school with, many years earlier. This person was not a close friend and there had been no contact for all the years between high school and early October 2008. In the e-mail, the person indicated that he had been thinking about me for the last 40 years and, by the way, did I have a spare ticket to the debate. 
September 30, 2012 - 3:45pm
From my days in college, the only stress I remember is social stress and the stress of fitting in but that isn’t the stress being talked today. Today’s stress is financial stress and it is clearly manifesting itself on today’s generation of students.
September 23, 2012 - 3:30pm
The cheating scandal at Harvard which could involve as many as 125 students in a single class has gotten extensive publicity. And the impression given is that this is an unusual event.  For example, as quoted in the New York Times, Harvard’s dean of undergraduate education noted that this cheating incident at Harvard “is unprecedented in its scope and magnitude.”  This may be correct, given that it involves almost half of the class, but cheating and academic dishonesty are not unusual events and the “scope and magnitude” of what happens nationwide is certainly disturbing.
September 16, 2012 - 8:29pm
I’m watching our students, especially our 1st year students, walk around campus from class to class- with backpacks filled with books.  And I know from looking at course outlines that textbooks in paper format continue to dominate higher education classes as they did when I went to college.  There is even a feeling, still prevalent, that regardless of all the technological advances, textbooks, as we have always known them, will continue their dominance for at least another decade.  I don’t think that will happen.
September 9, 2012 - 8:07pm
I just returned from a family vacation week in the Netherlands spending time at the Floriade (which is the once every ten years flower show) as well as time in Amsterdam and th surrounding areas.  I thoroughly enjoyed the trip.  Certain observations and comparisons are inevitable and these observations may help us and our county in the years ahead.
August 26, 2012 - 6:25pm
With much of high education in a constrained situation, there are more and more discussions regarding how to operate in an ongoing environment of greater than historical constraints for much of higher education. I have talked about a number of possible alternatives to deal with these constraints in a relatively recent blog including larger class size, more adjuncts, etc.  Another important part of this equation are the choices that are provided and how extensive those choices are.  And here, I am writing about the choice of courses within a major as well as areas of major.
August 19, 2012 - 7:22pm
As I have noted before I am a car person and so last night I took advantage of an opportunity from a local dealer to take a preview firsthand look at the new 2013 Cadillac ATS.  The ATS is aimed at the Mercedes C class and BMW 3 class competition, a competition that BMW has dominated for a number of years. The luxury entry level cars are key bread and butter cars for the upscale brands and Cadillac has been absent from this market for many years. I actually remember when Cadillac first entered this market — the vehicle was the Cadillac Cimarron, a mediocre leather trimmed version of the Chevrolet Cavalier.
August 12, 2012 - 4:40pm
Part of my non-work identity is defined by three interests – Broadway musicals, chocolate and cars. In the cars category, I read virtually every car magazine and look at virtually all car related websites. I don’t claim this is in any way intellectual but growing up at the time that cars helped define the national and individual identity, and personified progress, made a tremendous impact.
August 5, 2012 - 4:27pm
I always enjoy a good laugh bit it rarely happens when I am reading economics. I’ve never thought of economics as the “dismal science” but likewise, it never seems to be a barrel of laughs. Two weeks ago, while reading one of the Sunday newspapers, I came across an interview by Mary Ann Gwinn of The Seattle Times with Yoram Bauman, Ph.D. who describes himself as “the world’s first and only stand-up economist.”

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