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.

April 24, 2011 - 9:27pm
For a few years in the mid-2000’s, I was a fan of satellite radio. I had a longish commute, and there was only so much NPR I could endure, especially during pledge drives. I loved the variety of music satellite offered -- I was a particular fan of “beyond jazz” on XM -- and was convinced that the business model made sense; although there may not be many fans-per-square-mile for any given genre of music, there are probably enough across the country to justify a station. It was the “long tail” applied to music, enabled by technology.
April 21, 2011 - 8:59pm
A perplexed correspondent writes:
April 20, 2011 - 9:52pm
A new correspondent writes:I am the library director at a small liberal arts institution. I have worked closely with the administration and also served on many standing and ad hoc faculty committees. Looking 10 years or so into the future, I feel very drawn to, well, jobs like yours. Community colleges particularly interest me because I started out in public libraries and still feel drawn to that broader public mission.
April 19, 2011 - 9:30pm
Over the past week, I've heard three separate discussions of invisible hoops in the job market that disfavor folks who are already disfavored. Since that describes the majority of cc students, it seems relevant here.
April 18, 2011 - 10:19pm
The Wife is Catholic, and I’m not. She’s raising the kids Catholic, though we’ve negotiated some boundaries on that.The Boy has a friend who is a Jehovah’s Witness, which occasioned the following discussion in the car on the way home from Mass. (I wasn’t there; this is according to TW.)TB: He doesn’t believe the same things I believe, but it’s still okay to be friends with him, right?TW: Of course! Good people believe all kinds of different things, and they’re still good people. Like I’m Catholic, and so are you, and so is TG, but Daddy is...
April 17, 2011 - 9:36pm
One of my colleagues calls this month “Hatepril.” It’s an awful time. With the academic year in the final stretch, nearly everybody is fried. The faculty are tired and cranky, and not at their best; the students are tired and scared; the administrators are overscheduled to within inches of our lives.
April 14, 2011 - 10:15pm
A new correspondent writes:I am a doctoral student at State University, a university founded on the principle that college and continuing education should be available to everyone. We began as a college for night students, students of color, and students returning to school in hopes of a better job; as a result, we are still known for being a teaching college and many of our students are public school kids or returning students. I have been a TA or instructor of record for my entire graduate career, and I enjoy teaching quite a bit.
April 13, 2011 - 9:20pm
- The Boy and The Girl both did science fair projects again this year. TB did one on paper airplanes, testing whether the number of folds in the design of the plane affected the distance it would fly. (It didn’t.) TG did one on whether all liquids weigh the same. She poured vegetable oil, water, and molasses into a jar, and noted that the molasses sank to the bottom while the oil rose to the top. We also discovered that molasses pours faster than the cliche would lead you to believe.
April 12, 2011 - 10:04pm
In response to yesterday’s post predicting huge personnel movement as soon as the market starts to thaw, a new correspondent writes:
April 11, 2011 - 10:04pm
In the next two to three years, we will see a level of personnel movement in higher ed that will dwarf anything we’ve seen since the 1960’s.I’m basing this on two observations. The first is the increasing median age of full-timers in higher ed, especially on the administrative side. The second is the extinction of pay raises.

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