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August 19, 2010
“So what can you do with a degree in Cultural Studies?” I felt the deer-caught-in-headlights look come over my face as I realized that I couldn’t easily answer the question in the ten words or less the situation required.
August 19, 2010
In this week's kerfuffle about the New Faculty Majority – from which other administrators seem to have learned that such things are best ignored, since engaging just brings flame wars – several commenters asked, with varying degrees of civility, what my answer was.It's severalfold.
August 19, 2010
Last week, I watched my daughter giggle as she made her way down the water slide at our public pool. She was floating on a mat that was pushed along by a stream of water until she was dropped, amidst laughter and delight, into the deep end of the pool. Ever the geek, I could not help but think of the concepts of “stocks” and “flows” in economics. Stocks are compared to the amount of water in the pool at any one time, while flows are the rate of change of that water, how much water is pumped into the pool minus the amount of water leaving the pool.
August 19, 2010
As semester schools begin their academic year, and quarter schools brace for the start of the fall term, what types of new technologies/technology projects are going to be implemented within your student affairs division, department or area? Academic affairs does a really good job of bragging about technology innovations. It's time for student affairs folks to share their stories, their best practices, and their "new" tech ideas.
August 19, 2010
A while back, I was excoriated for stating that a four degree centigrade rise in average temperature could render much of North America uninhabitable.Part of that reaction, I suspect, has to do with the nuclear-devastation image that the word "uninhabitable" brings to many minds, perhaps combined with the idea that things would be just as they are except a bit warmer. That's not the way the climate system deals with massive energy inputs (global warming, by a different name).
August 18, 2010
This is one of those “individually rational, collectively insane” moments. The New York Times reported that some of the federal stimulus money that was supposed to save the jobs of teachers, police officers, and other public employees is instead being squirreled away by states and school districts, in anticipation of even lower tax revenues next year. The quote that jumped off the screen for me was:
August 18, 2010
Dorothea Salo has an interesting post at the Book of Trogool. She wonders about the mission of academic libraries, and about one paradox in particular: Can libraries support the open access movement by reallocating funds from paying for content to providing support for open access publications, or does that somehow go against the library's mission to support its local clientele?
August 18, 2010
Much like new parking stickers, greetings from the dean, freshman orientation, long lines at the campus bookstore, and the reception to welcome new faculty and staff, the annual Beloit College "Mindset List" has become one of the back-to-campus rituals of American higher education. The Beloit List was launched in 1998 as a way to help academics understand the coming of age experience of the nation’s college freshmen.
August 18, 2010
Like many who enjoyed Elizabeth Gilbert’s travel memoir Eat, Pray, Love, I’m excited to see the film, but wary, since my pleasure in reading it derived less from the plot and more from Gilbert’s prose and her skill in interweaving personal with factual. I particularly enjoyed the first section of her journey, which describes her travels in Italy and the intense pleasure of eating as Gilbert let go of the usual restrictions white middle class American women impose on themselves.
August 18, 2010
In international higher education, we are judged by the company we keep. Thus, it is of great importance that universities choose their partners carefully, make sure that their “brand” and reputation is protected, and that the partnership provides benefits to all sides.

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