Higher Education Quick Takes

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Thursday, August 25, 2011 - 3:00am

A law professor who is 73 has sued the University of Pittsburgh, charging that he was passed over for a tenure-track opening because of his age. The university declined to comment, but The National Law Journal noted that Pitt is the fourth law school recently hit with an age discrimination suit. The others are at Michigan State University, University of Baltimore and University of Iowa.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011 - 3:00am

Bethany University in California shut down this year, but another Christian college in the state, Olivet University, is taking over its campus, The San Jose Mercury News reported. Classes will begin this fall.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011 - 3:00am

Facing a decline in student interest, Melbourne University may end or revamp its Australian studies program, The Australian reported. A review panel found that fewer students at Melbourne (and at other universities) are interested in courses built on "the national narrative.'' One idea under consideration is to focus more on Australian environmental history, a subject that relates to Aboriginal history and to historical geography.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011 - 3:00am

In today’s Academic Minute, Stanley Glick of Albany Medical College describes his work on a substance that could reduce cravings and clear a path to recovery for those addicted to drugs and alcohol. Find out more about the Academic Minute here.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011 - 3:00am

Princeton University announced Tuesday that it is banning freshmen from participating in rush for fraternities and sororities. Princeton's Greek system is not recognized by the university, and students live in campus housing. Eating clubs (to which students belong as juniors and seniors) have been the source of much debate at Princeton over the years, but fraternities have gained popularity recently. President Shirley M. Tilghman, in a letter to new students, explained the rationale for the new policy. "[T]he decision to prohibit freshman year affiliation and recruitment is driven primarily by a conviction that social and residential life at Princeton should continue to revolve around the residential colleges, the eating clubs, and the shared experience of essentially all undergraduates living and dining on campus."

Wednesday, August 24, 2011 - 3:00am

Bethany College in Kansas has suspended all 15 members of its men's golf team for three tournaments after learning that they had posed naked (with golf clubs covering certain body parts), The Wichita Eagle reported. (The photograph in question is visible with the link.) Jon Daniels, athletic director and golf coach, said: "I've been around a long time and I think this is a case of young people who just don't think beyond the moment and don't realize who they're hurting."

Wednesday, August 24, 2011 - 3:00am

Authorities in Idaho reported that they found Ernesto A. Bustamante, who until last week was an assistant professor of psychology at the University of Idaho, dead from an apparently self-inflicted wound. The Associated Press reported that he was the primary suspect in the murder of a graduate student in psychology. Officials did not say why Bustamante left the university or whether he knew the victim, Katy Benoit, who earned her undergraduate degree at Idaho last year.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011 - 3:00am

A $7.6 million bequest to the University of California at Davis School of Veterinary Medicine has been made not in the name of the late donor, but in that of her late cat, KSBW News reported. Maxine Adler, the donor, brought Du Bee, her cat, to the veterinary college for treatment for cancer 10 years ago. The cat died, but Adler appreciated the care provided. Under the terms of the bequest, any cancer treatment developed with the funds must include "Du Bee" in its name. Also, a Du Bee award will be made every year to researchers who make advances in cancer treatment for pets.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011 - 3:00am

Hazo Carter, president of West Virginia State University, announced that he would retire at the end of the academic year, a decision that follows a faculty vote of no confidence in his leadership, The Charleston Daily Mail reported. Faculty members complained about a lack of leadership, and until Tuesday, he indicated that he planned to stay on.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011 - 3:00am

A business law professor at the University of California at Los Angeles has set off a debate over the appropriateness of the UCLA law school accepting a $10 million gift from Lowell Milken to create a business law institute, The New York Times reported. Lowell Milken is the younger brother of Michael Milken and worked with his more famous brother in the junk bond business. Michael Milken pleaded guilty to securities law violations when the government agreed to drop criminal charges against Lowell, but the Securities and Exchange Commission barred both brothers from the securities industry. Lowell Milken never admitted wrongdoing in these cases.

Lynn A. Stout, a business law professor, wrote to senior officials saying: “The creation of a Lowell Milken Institute for Business Law and Policy will damage my personal and professional reputation, as I have devoted my career to arguing for investor protection and honest and ethical behavior in business." Many other UCLA professors, the Times reported, have no problem with the gift.

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