The shift from a subordinate learner as a grad student to a would-be peer on the job market is one of the most predictable traumas in an academic's life, inducing professional and emotional distress in almost everyone who encounters it, writes Tim Cassedy.
TIAA-CREF, which provides financial services and retirement planning to employees of colleges and universities, will shorten its name to TIAA, the company announced. The name change is part of a larger rebranding effort, which also includes a new website and logo design.
The rebranding is meant to capitalize on the company’s history -- founded by Andrew Carnegie in 1918, it was originally called TIAA -- while also highlighting its ability to innovate. The company was originally created to fund retirement plans for professors, but it has since branched out; now it also serves researchers, government workers and medical professionals, among others.
The company also hopes the rebranding will make its services easier to navigate. The name will be easier to say; the content will be easier to read. Website copy will be written more directly and will be accompanied by more images.
“When it comes to planning for the future, our research found that many people don’t know where to start,” Connie Weaver, chief marketing officer at TIAA, said in a press release. “The reimagined TIAA customer experience is designed to break through the fear and inertia that people may have when it comes to financial decision making.
Inver Hills Community College, in Minnesota, has placed Dave Berger, a faculty member in sociology, on leave and barred him from campus. The move is raising questions, The Star Tribune reported, because Berger is the grievance representative of the faculty union and the move follows a faculty vote of no confidence in President Tim Wynes. Berger said he hasn't been told why the college placed him on leave. The college says it cannot discuss details, but that the reason has nothing to do with Berger's union activism.
The University of Iowa saw a 36 percent jump in faculty resignations last year compared to a year earlier -- 66 resignations in 2013-14 versus 90 in 2014-15 -- according to a report from the Iowa Board of Regents. Over the same period, the number of resignations at Iowa State University and the University of Northern Iowa fell slightly, the Iowa City Press-Citizenreported.
Kevin Kregel, associate provost for the faculty at the University of Iowa, told the Press-Citizen that the institution is looking into what caused the spike, and regents are set to discuss the matter at their meeting later this month. Based on information from faculty exit surveys, part of the problem is faculty salaries compared to those outside academe, Kregel said. That's especially true in the medical school, from which a majority of last year’s resignations came. Bruce Harreld, university president, recently asked the Iowa Legislature to approve a $4.5 million increase in state funding, to be used to attract and retain top faculty members, according to the Press-Citizen. Twenty-five resignations across the University of Iowa came from minority faculty members, the highest among the state’s regents universities, though Kregel said that was comparable to other institutions as a percentage of total resignations.
Andrew Bournos, a controversial new member of the Board of Trustees of Mount Saint Mary College, in Newburgh, N.Y., has resigned. Faculty members objected to Bournos’s social media profile, in particular his tweet about a video that claimed Jews and Muslims have no faith. The college initially decided that because Bournos hadn’t “liked” the video, he hadn’t endorsed it. But in a brief email to faculty and staff members on Tuesday -- a day after Inside Higher Ed wrote about the controversy and various other faculty concerns about shared governance on campus -- Albert Gruner, board chair, said he had accepted Bournos’s resignation. A college spokesperson said via email, "All of us at the Mount remain committed to providing our students with an outstanding education steeped in the proud tradition of the Dominican sisters." The college's advocacy chapter of the American Association of University Professors said in a statement Wednesday that Bournos's departure is "welcome news for the entire college community, and we hope it is the first of many steps to be taken by the Board of Trustees in order to repair and restore a healthy working relationship between the administration and the faculty, staff and students[.]"