Rider University and its faculty union have agreed on a deal that will freeze professors' wages for two years so that the university can abandon planned layoffs and program cuts, NJ.com reported. The cuts would have included 14 full-time faculty positions, an unknown number of part-time adjunct slots and more than a dozen majors. Rider said that the two years of faculty salary freezes will free up $2 million.
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill on Thursday announced it had fired two more employees in a scandal over fake courses in which many athletes enrolled and received credit despite not doing any work, The News & Observer reported. The dismissals bring to six the number of employees who have lost their jobs in the scandal. A former associate dean was allowed to keep her job as a faculty member, but not to return to an administrative role. That official says the university's findings about her are unfair.
James Ramsey, president of the University of Louisville, has been much criticized (and through a spokeswoman apologized two weeks ago) for posing with his staff wearing stereotypical Mexican clothing and sombreros for a party last month (right). But on Thursday, in a time of heightened scrutiny of college leaders on inclusiveness, he issued a new, personal apology to students and faculty members. He pledged -- by raising new money, not by reallocating -- to provide more funds for financial aid for Latino students and to recruit more Latino faculty members.
He pledged to use his mistake to change the university to be more committed to diversity. "I deeply regret the Halloween costumes worn by my staff and me. We made a mistake wearing a costume that misrepresents the culture of Mexicans and Mexican-Americans and does not foster the inclusion and diversity efforts that we have worked hard to build over the past 13 years on our campus," he wrote. "I, and I alone, take full responsibility for this incident. I have prayed for God’s forgiveness, and I ask for your forgiveness as well. We now have an opportunity to use this incident to bring about meaningful changes that will strengthen us as a campus."
Teaching assistants at the University of Wisconsin at Madison are planning to protest next week over a proposed restructuring of their working conditions and compensation. The students say they were not consulted, but rather learned of the plans to cap their maximum workload at 20 hours from emails directed to faculty members and administrators. The Teaching Assistants’ Association alleges the changes constitute a violation of the university’s promise to uphold its labor contract even after 2011 legislation pushed by Governor Scott Walker challenging public employee unions.
“The proposal to restructure graduate student worker pay is a nonstarter,” association leaders said in a statement. “University administrators' calls for more ‘flexibility’ and a reliance on ‘market forces’ will actually translate into fewer positions and workplace protections for graduate employees. This means that graduate students are going to lose their jobs, along with their paychecks and health insurance.”
John Lucas, a university spokesman, said the student association is wrong in asserting that the changes -- which don’t take effect until 2017 -- will have any impact on their take-home pay or benefits. Rather, he said, the university’s plans relate almost exclusively to a change in the administrative process by which the graduate research assistant stipends are set. “The change will have no impact on the take-home pay or benefits” for research assistants, he said. Lucas said the proposed 20-hour cap applies to international students and is designed to comply with federal requirements.
David Geffen, the entertainment industry executive, is giving $100 million to the University of California at Los Angeles for the institution to create a school for grades 6-12. The effort is in part to create new options for education, with scholarships for low-income students. But a key motivating factor is to expand high-quality education options that would be available for the children of UCLA faculty members. Officials said the availability of affordable, high-quality education is a key factor in faculty recruitment efforts.
With this gift and others in the past, Geffen has donated a total of $400 million to UCLA.
The University of Missouri at Columbia announced Wednesday that police officers apprehended the person they believe made threats Tuesday via Yik Yak. “The suspect is in MUPD custody and was not located on or near the MU campus at the time of the threat,” said the alert from the university. Reports of online threats to kill black people at the university circulated widely Tuesday night and Wednesday morning. While the university has increased security on campus, the institution is operating on a normal schedule. Tensions at the university, where many black students say that they have experienced racist acts and a hostile environment, have run high amid protests that led to the ousters of the campus chancellor and system president. The university is encouraging people not to spread rumors and to report any security concerns.
Authorities identified the suspect as Hunter Park, 19, a sophomore at Missouri University of Science and Technology, and he was charged with making a terroristic threat.
Also charged Wednesday with making a terroristic threat on Yik Yak to kill black people was Connor B. Stottlemyre, a freshman at Northwest Missouri State University, The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported. Authorities said that this threat did not specifically mention the University of Missouri.