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Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Year End

As the semester winds (wines? whines?) to a close the good Dr. Tinkle has a few observations.
1. Arthur C. Clarke was right, "The future isn't what it used to be." Neither is our university.
2. Administrators live at one university, faculty in A & S live in another.
3. An administrator is always going to say there is no money to do what you want or need to do. They will spend it on what they want and think they need to do.
4. Administrators believe in words like efficiency, calculabilty and control. Faculty believe in quality. So, unless the administrator has spent a great deal of time in the faculty's world, he/she will have no real empathy for what we do. They might speak of quality, but will then turn around and hire visitors because they are "inexpensive" alternatives to tenure or tenure track, faculty. Hiring highly qualified lecturers becomes suspect. Visitors give administrators control over resources because the department has to return every year (or three at the most) and plead for resources. If the department has a history of bad behavior, the spot may be lost. Scott Scarborough has become god of the exchequer. He decides what resources you really need.
His decision will not be based on the quality of the educational experience you wish to provide. It will be based on the priorities of the administration. Quite frankly those priorities don't include us.

7 comments:

Bloggie said...

Bloggie never fails to be amazed at how much time and money UT administration spends on monitoring this blog and posting comments under various aliases. As soon as Dr. Tinkle posted this, several comments sprang up under different names, all apparently written by the same person, all amounting to the same administrative whine. Even if the posts are late at night, these comments appear within minutes. Bloggie deletes them as a rule, but shows enough of them so you get the idea. they have perhaps a dozen channels they use to pipe palaver, let them use them

Do they have a person full time assigned to this blog? Apparently. Why does it so bother them that they cannot control all information in the University.

The gossip network has it they are even monitoring emails now of people whom they suspect. Whose job description includes that function? Some VP or a flunky?

Good work, Tinkle. You have annoyed them again by stating something everybody knows but which we are not supposed to discuss.

backpocket542 said...

No wonder I always feel that the UT Administration just thinks of me in the form of a dollar sign.

Anonymous said...

Indeed, administrator priorities certainly are not ours. How is it that we have been waiting to hear about VAPs for the fall, but as soon as the softball coach is "released" from her position, UT announces a national search? This following the hire announced earlier this week of Greg Smith, also in athletics. Yet in a&s, searches don't culminate in hires. Since administrators continue to try to increase faculty workload, why are they not trying to increase the workload of coaches? Last time I looked, the mission of the university was teaching and learning, not pitching, catching and administrating.

Anonymous said...

Increase faculty workloads? You mean from 2 classes to 3? How will you manage?

Anonymous said...

I mean more classes on top of the independent studies, honors theses, masters theses, roundtable discussions, advising, section coordination, writing assessment reports, preparing for accreditation visits, service, and yes, research, even as we prepare our "boutique" courses.

Anonymous said...

The softball coach gets a national search but the president is jobbed-in through a backroom deal?

Anonymous said...

Everyone knows doctors think "MD" stands for "mostly deity." These folks have big egos and think they are the ONLY ONES who know the right course and can save the university and keep it from drying up and blowing away, even though it has existed for a hundred years before them and will exist long after they are forgotten. They are wanna-be CEOs who want to continue to apply the failed "business model" to universities, even though it is the same thinking behind this model that has brought our nation to the brink of ruin.