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December 12, 2007
This week I ran into another of those "the policies make sense, but the application is silly" scenarios. A wonderful, well-credentialed, hardworking, and well-respected leader of the full-time staff asked me about redefining her job so that it would include a half-time teaching component in her field of expertise. (It's a relatively specialized area, and her academic credentials are more than good enough.
December 12, 2007
This is a dirty little industry secret.In some necks of the woods -- moneyed ones, especially -- this is the time of year when we start to see a parade of young men and women with hangdog expressions and very angry parents. The students went "away" to expensive residential colleges in September, and partied their way to a GPA that starts with a zero. Come December or January, their parents drag them to the local cc as a sort of combination boot camp and purgatory, usually with some sort of "improve or else" mandate to the student.
December 11, 2007
In a story in yesterday's IHE about for-profit companies taking over nonprofit colleges -- the gist of the story was that the "trend" is tiny and unlikely to grow anytime soon -- a particular quote really jumped out at me.
December 10, 2007
It’s nearly finals time, and parents everywhere are worried for their children, who live so far away at university and are under such stress.
December 10, 2007
Bowing to the inevitable, I've spent far too much time lately shopping. Which means...The aural assault of cheesy Christmas music has begun.I'll admit, having been raised in a musically unfortunate household (Neil Diamond, Anne Murray, Rita Coolidge, Air Supply), I'm a little jumpy when it comes to awful music. Part of the reason I grabbed onto satellite radio the way drowning people grab onto life preservers was that it offered the prospect of escaping the tyranny of Lite Hits and NPR pledge drives.
December 9, 2007
This is the time of endless speculation about which division I-A college football team is the best in America. We have polls, computer rankings, conference championships, and the high profile BCS (Bowl Championship Series) program. Our experts (which include just about everyone who follows college sports) argue with great passion about which scheme is the appropriate method for anointing the “best college football team in America.” This controversy lives and repeats itself because we can never get it right.
December 7, 2007
I know that on the page “my pud” sounds nasty, but you should see it in person. Better yet, drop by and have a taste.
December 7, 2007
The Fall rubber chicken circuit is in full swing again. Lots of evening events, celebrating all manner of good things. Each one worthwhile in itself, though they add up.This morning, at home:The Boy (weakly): I didn't get to play with you last night.Ouch.I'm going in late today, so we can walk to school together.
December 6, 2007
"I go back to professional baseball and Alex Rodriguez making $25 million a year. Or to Julia Roberts and $20 million for one movie. Are those people worth it? Of course not. But if that's what the marketplace is and enough people are willing to watch Alex play or Julia Roberts in a movie, they have a right to get that."
December 5, 2007
When I enlisted in the Army years ago, I was offered half-a-dozen duty stations for my first posting. I chose Fort Campbell, Kentucky, home of the 101st Airborne Division. The Screaming Eagles were famed for their service in World War II, especially at Bastogne, where General McAuliffe made his famous retort—“Nuts”—to the Germans demanding surrender.

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