Quick Takes: Critic of Colleges Loses Primary, Calif. Regents Back President, Management Wins Career Ed Vote, Dartmouth Help for Grad Students, BU Bars Sudan Stocks, UNLV's Pick, FBI Raid, Doonesbury's College Poll, NCAA Rejects McMurry 'Indians'

May 19, 2006
  • Rep. Gibson Armstrong, who led efforts in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives to create a special committee to study higher education -- and then led that committee this year -- lost a Republican primary election on Tuesday to seek re-election. Armstrong charged that many colleges engaged in politically correct treatment of students and faculty members and his inquiries were sympathetic to David Horowitz's "Academic Bill of Rights" movement, much to the consternation of many academics in the state, who said that the creation of a special committee to investigate them was offensive. Armstrong was defeated on a primary day in which several Republican incumbents were ousted -- over issues having nothing to do with higher education. But Armstrong's opponent -- a conservative college student -- told the Free Exchange on Campus blog that he didn't see the need for the hearings Armstrong held.
  • A day after Robert C. Dynes, president of the University of California system, apologized repeatedly for problems and controversies involving executive compensation, the Board of Regents issued a statement backing him -- and also pledging more oversight. Prior to this week's meeting, there had been speculation in California that Dynes was vulnerable to losing his job. Dynes took responsibility for the problems in a "frank discussion" with the board, the statement said. "We are convinced that he understands the dimension of the problem, the context in which these problems occurred, and the institutional barriers that must be overcome to ensure lasting reform," the statement said.
  • Career Education Corporation's shareholders appear to have voted to endorse a slate of three board candidates put forward by the company's current management, rejecting a challenge from a dissident stockholder, R. Steven Bostic, the company announced after Thursday's annual meeting.
  • Dartmouth College graduate students who are primary care providers will receive their full stipends and health benefits for 12 weeks following the birth or adoption of a child, under a new policy announced this week.
  • Boston University has joined the growing number of institutions that will not invest in companies doing business with links to the government in Sudan. Institutions are adopting divestment policies because of the government's role in the genocide in Darfur.
  • The Nevada System of Higher Education's Board of Regents on Thursday unanimously selected David B. Ashley, executive vice chancellor and provost of the University of California at Merced, as president of the University of Nevada at Las Vegas. The candidate originally nominated by a regent search committee, Lieut. Gen. William B. Lennox Jr., superintendent of the U.S. Military Academy, withdrew last weekend amid faculty criticism.
  • Federal Bureau of Investigation agents raided a dean's office at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey Wednesday, acting on a tip that documents in an ongoing investigation of corruption were being shredded, The Star-Ledger reported.
  • After a brief moment when it looked like Cornell University had a lock on attracting the (fictional) Alex Doonesbury to its next class of freshmen, her choice remains undecided. More than 150,000 people have cast votes in an unscientific straw poll about where she should enroll. Massachusetts Institute of Technology is in the lead.
  • A staff review by the National Collegiate Athletic Association has rejected McMurry University's arguments on behalf of keeping the team name "Indians," despite the NCAA's objections to the use of Native American symbols and imagery. The Texas university had noted that the team name was intended to honor the Kaw Indian nation, but the NCAA found that "good intentions" do not negate the negative stereotypes promoted by such team names.
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