Colleges are at risk of losing some of the most talented young academics -- especially female ones -- if they don't make major changes in the faculty career path. That was the message at a briefing Tuesday for presidents attending the annual meeting of the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities.
Regulating diploma mills is a little like herding cats.
The institutions, which offer fraudulent degrees in exchange for cash and little or no academic work, crop up overnight and disappear nearly as fast, when consumer complaints rise or law enforcement officials catch the scent. State and federal lawmakers yearn to crack down on these "colleges," but because they're hard to define and hard to nail down, there's often little they can do.
It's rare for a publication to print letters to the editor about articles published more than 25 years ago. But a letter in the new issue of The New York Review of Books couldn't have been published back then.
The letter, "McCarthyism at Harvard," details the experiences of Robert N. Bellah, an emeritus professor of sociology at the University of California at Berkeley who previously taught at Harvard -- and ran into difficulties there in the 1950s because of his brief membership in the Communist Party while a Harvard undergraduate in the late 1940s.
"Rising Faculty Star" features e-mail interviews with up-and-coming young professors about their backgrounds, their work and their career arcs, among other things. Alison Farmer, a fifth-year graduate student in astrophysics at Caltech, was all over the Astrophysics Rumor Mill this winter; she received fellowship offers from MIT, Berkeley and Harvard.
Q: What drew you to astrophysics?