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 23, 2009 - 10:05pm
Many years ago, in one of those gender theory seminars, I remember a remark to the effect that men have the privilege of being able to choose to dress 'unmarked' in a way that women don't. The idea was that American culture had settled on several different uniforms for men, depending on the context, and that men have the option of wearing those uniforms if they want to fit in and not draw particular attention to what they're wearing.
June 22, 2009 - 9:46pm
Okay, I’m a little late to this one, but there’s a nifty exchange between Notorious Ph.D. and Historiann about the perversities of budget cuts at their respective institutions. The comments are worth reading, too.
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 MeetingsOkay, it's clear, but I'm bored before I even get to the end of the phrase.7 Ways to Run Better MeetingsThe '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.


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