Higher Education Webinars

Confessions of a Community College Dean

In which a veteran of cultural studies seminars in the 1990s moves into academic administration and finds himself a married suburban father of two. Foucault, plus lawn care.

November 23, 2010 - 8:44pm
“Why them and not us?”Managing the different impacts of microbenefits is a surprisingly large part of my job. I’m still getting used to it, and still shaking off disbelief at some of the issues people will choose to fight about. This week brought that home to me yet again.
November 22, 2010 - 9:31pm
Anecdotally, it looks like the new Higher Education Act is doing a number on college bookstores, and on bookstores in college towns.
November 21, 2010 - 6:54pm
This weekend The Girl got hit by a nasty stomach bug, so nobody got much sleep and our Sunday plans were discombobulated. It brought back memories of those times when TW still worked outside the house, and we had to do the Sick Kid Shuffle.When your kid normally goes to daycare, a sick kid is a major crisis. Suddenly your first line of defense is down, since you can’t take a sick kid to daycare. (I’ve seen parents try it, though.) Most days, we had to choose among several imperfect options:
November 18, 2010 - 9:14pm
Since Thanksgiving is next week, nobody wants to have meetings next week. That means that this week was doubled up.On Tuesday I had 8 meetings. On Wednesday, 6. Yesterday, 7.By the end of yesterday, I’ll admit getting a little punchy. That’s dangerous, because punchiness leads to snark, which leads to drama.I’m pretty sure there’s something in the Geneva Convention maxing out daily meetings at 6.
November 17, 2010 - 9:55pm
In a discussion last week, I realized that the common denominator to so many of my personal hobbyhorses is fatigue with the climate of permanent austerity that seems to have settled upon public higher education.Off the top of my head, I can come up with several reasons why we seem to be stuck in permanent austerity mode..First, there's the basic open-endedness of mission. How much education is enough? How many programs should we run? How small should we let sections get? Which services should we provide? Whose salaries are too low?
November 16, 2010 - 10:10pm
Academic administrators get tired of hearing the “cross over to the dark side” line. It’s tired, it’s arrogant, and it picks the wrong villain. Darth Vader isn’t the real villain; Mini-me is.Fans of cheesy-bad movies will remember Mini-me as Dr. Evil’s sidekick/mascot in the Austin Powers movies. Dr. Evil had his share of great lines (“the Diet Coke of evil”), but his true awfulness shone forth in his creation of Mini-Me. Mini-me was exactly how he sounds -- a smaller, but recognizable, version of Dr. Evil himself.
November 15, 2010 - 9:54pm
Tenured Radical’s thoughtful post on elite presidential salaries got me thinking about the “run the college like a business” canard. Most of the people who use that phrase, whether approvingly or damningly, haven’t personally worked in a college that was actually a business. I have -- you’ve heard of it -- and I can report confidently that it’s the wrong metaphor for the community colleges I know.
November 14, 2010 - 10:10pm
A new correspondent writes:What constitutes “falling behind” on grading in a college classroom and what are the consequences?It strikes me that there are two parts to this issue:
November 11, 2010 - 9:56pm
Actual dinner conversation:TW: So-and-so is dumb as a rock.TG: Rocks aren’t dumb!
November 10, 2010 - 10:12pm
A new correspondent writes:

Pages

Back to Top