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.

June 21, 2009 - 9:48pm
Last week was a three-hanky special. The Girl had two graduations: one from her gymnastics class, and one from her preschool. And I had my first Father's Day since Dad died.
June 19, 2009 - 3:56am
A new correspondent writes:With all this talk about green jobs and the more than usualuncertainty about the shape of the future job market, I've beencurious of late about how community college deans, departments, andcounselors cope with the issue of occupational forecasting.
June 17, 2009 - 9:07pm
Several commenters have recently suggested a Dean Dad reality show. It's not gonna happen – the pseudonym would be pretty much shot, and cameras don't do me any favors these days – but it's fun to think about. The pilot episode: Opening shot – the family at dinner. (Farting sound) TB, TG: DADDY! DD: I didn't do it. TW: Yes, you did. (Cut to individual interviews) DD: I really didn't. TG: Silly Daddy. TW: That's disgusting. TB: (guilty smile) montage, pop song, commercial break
June 16, 2009 - 9:34pm
Our summer enrollments are breaking records, and anecdotally, that seems to be a function mostly of two variables: a lack of summer jobs, and a more transfer-focused student body. Both of those variables largely track the recession.
June 15, 2009 - 9:19pm
We're pretty sure it'll be fiscal year 2011. This article struck a chord, since I've been hearing the exact same thing on campus.
June 14, 2009 - 10:02pm
The indefatigable Lesboprof has a thoughtful post up about whether salaries should be public information. She makes several great points in favor of publicity, including preventing discrimination and giving rookies a fair sense of the going rate. I agree, but will take it even farther.
June 11, 2009 - 9:23pm
Every summer, blog traffic slows down a bit, which usually occasions some musings on better marketing. So, some musings on titles... “The” is so much more powerful than “a,” or even a number. Compare: A List of Ways to Run Better Meetings Okay, it's clear, but I'm bored before I even get to the end of the phrase. 7 Ways to Run Better Meetings The '7' suggests at least some level of discipline (or finitude), but it still lacks a certain urgency. The 7 Secrets to Better Meetings
June 11, 2009 - 4:29am
Like Tolstoy's unhappy families, every bad meeting is bad in its own particular way. Some elements of lousy meetings are common enough to be recognizable from afar: domination by blowhards, poorly constructed agendas, leaders playing “guess what I'm thinking.” But even without the obvious hazards, meetings can go wrong in so many ways that those of us who endure more than most learn pretty quickly to lower our expectations.
June 9, 2009 - 9:53pm
This time of year brings with it the annual flood of program reviews, employee evaluations, and end-of-year wrap-ups. (Between the academic year and the fiscal year, we hit the 'reset' button on July 1.) That means that the second half of June becomes an exercise in speed reading and diplomacy.
June 8, 2009 - 10:24pm
The Chronicle and IHE each have articles about succession planning for college administrators. They're both relatively supportive of hiring internal candidates, and for many of the same reasons.

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