Higher Education Quick Takes
Although Joe Paterno was ousted as football coach at Pennsylvania State University last year, he is still giving to the university. The Centre Daily Times reported that Paterno and his wife donated $100,000 recently to the university to two non-athletic programs with the Paterno name. They donated $50,000 to the library and $50,000 to a fellows program in the College of the Liberal Arts.
Morgan State University on Sunday indefinitely suspended its head basketball coach, Todd Bozeman, after the president of South Carolina State University and a number of other people said they saw Bozeman punch a player during a late timeout in the road game Saturday. But, The Baltimore Sun reported, Bozeman, who is on paid administrative leave, has maintained that witnesses exaggerated the interaction, which he described as “accidental” and like “coming around a corner and bumping into someone." Now, Bozeman’s lawyer is accusing university administrators of violating the coach’s contract and the university’s discipline policies by refusing to allow an appeal of the suspension. Morgan State hired Bozeman after he emerged from an eight-year ban for National Collegiate Athletic Association recruiting violations at the University of California at Berkeley.
Protests and political battles are creating tensions and leading to evictions at Sri Lanka's universities, BBC reported. Students complain about a range of government policies and proposals to create private universities, a move they see as one that would end a tradition of free higher education in the country.
Vietnamese universities are pushing for more autonomy, Viet Nam News reported. The institutions want control over such matters as enrollment policy and administration. Government officials have said that some state control remains needed to assure quality.
Rick Santorum is accusing President Obama of "snobbery" for saying that all Americans need at least some higher education, The Wall Street Journal reported. "We are leaving so many children behind,” said Santorum, whose candidacy for the Republican presidential nomination has been gaining ground of late, in New Hampshire on Saturday. "They’re not ready to go to [college.] They don’t want to go to college. They don’t need to go to college. I was so outraged that the President of the United States [said] every student should go to college." Added Santorum: "I have seven kids. Maybe they’ll all go to college. But if one of my kids wants to go and be an auto mechanic, good for him! That’s a good-paying job." As the article in the Journal noted, it is increasingly rare for political leaders to express that view, given that some higher education is now becoming necessary for many manufacturing jobs that once would not have required it.
Sterling College, a Christian liberal arts institution in Kansas, has announced an unusual gift. Someone left a boulder with a sword's handle sticking out of it outside a campus building. There was no note, but the boulder is engraved with "SC Warriors" on one side. (The college's athletic teams are known as the Warriors.) A statement from Scott Rich, vice president and chief financial officer, said, "The gift is professionally done, and it is clear that a lot of time and effort have gone into the project. We would like to know more information about the gift to properly thank those who donated it."
Organizers have failed in their attempt to gather enough petition signatures to force a vote in California on whether to repeal the state's Dream Act, The San Francisco Chronicle reported. The drive needed about 500,000 signatures and was about 57,000 short. California's Dream Act allows -- in certain circumstances -- students who lack the legal documentation to live in the United States to receive state financial aid.
The annual meeting of the Modern Language Association has long been the site of hook-ups (and gossip about hook-ups, real, exaggerated and fictional). Craigslist personals for Seattle (the meeting location) provide an insight into the current status of the genre of the MLA pick-up line. (Historians and economists also held annual meetings last week, but only one related personal, from a historian, could be found from their meetings on Craigslist for Chicago, where both groups convened.) Among the MLA members posting on Craigslist, one wrote "Drop me a line and let's see what extra credit work we can come up with." Another listed his qualifications this way: "I'm attractive and a literary genius from the wrong side of the tracks." Yet another asked those replying to "include either the word 'De Man' or 'Derrida' in your subject line."
The American Economic Association responded to criticism that some economists were too close to businesses or the government by issuing a new set of guidelines last week at its annual meeting in Chicago, aiming to get scholars to disclose the supporters of their research when they publish in AEA journals. The new guidelines were approved at an executive committee meeting Thursday. “Every submitted article should state the sources of financial support for the particular research it describes. If none, that fact should be stated,” says one of the new principles. Another principle asks authors to “identify each interested party from whom he or she has received significant financial support, summing to at least $10,000 in the past three years, in the form of consultant fees, retainers, grants and the like. The disclosure requirement also includes in-kind support, such as providing access to data.” The additions come after years of introspection by economists, following the financial meltdown of 2008.