Search This Blog

Friday, December 20, 2013

New UT Educational Consultant Hired

 UT Administration Seeking More Visionary Ideas.  

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Now that this Fall semester is nearly over--only about 3-1/2 hours left to post grades--how was it for you all? How do you feel the quality of your teaching was under Scarborough's "maximum usage" plan? (I thought of it when I saw this picture.)

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Monday, October 7, 2013

UT Dammerung

You of course realize, Dear Reader, that the Jacobs' Era at UT parallels, frighteningly, Richard Wagner's operatic Ring cycle. Bloggie invites further comparisons, but here are some of the tragic essentials:

In the beginning the Rhinemaidens (faculty) who watched over the Rhinegold (the treasures of education) are swimming around at the bottom of the Rhine River (Maumee?) keeping watch over the Rhinegold, their eternal task.  They are scatter-brained but innocent creatures, and, we must admit, a lot better-looking than most faculty, but there they are, a'singing and a'swimming. This went on for a very long time.

From a fissure emerges Alberich, sometimes described as a slimy sulphurous dwarf.  He lusts after the Rhinemaidens and pursues them, each in turn.

The Rhinemaidens, who perhaps are a bit too artsy and pretentious for their own good, taunt and reject Alberich, who as a dwarf represents the so-called business or vocational model of education, as dwarfs manufacture things and have a very vocational outlook on life, that is when they can't get their hands on any hot Rhinemaidens, and especially after a humiliating rejection.  

Alberich, frustrated, denounces Love and steals the Rheingold. The Rhinemaidens sing "O Weh, Oh Weh, Oh Weh,"  which is about all they have been doing now for the past several years. 

Without attempting to summarize almost 20 hours of operatic entanglement, involving incest, cronyism, searchless hires, a dragon, giants and questionable spending, the stolen Rheingold empowers and justifies various mercurial administrative transmutations of what was once a higher educational mission. Eventually the Gods use it to finance and justify the building of Valhalla, a classy new refurbished administrative palace, a bureaucratic structure that houses at least 40 Gods and Vice Presidents and their minions.  The transmutations include The New Entity, The Cloud University and Strategic Planning for the Sake of Strategic Planning.   

There is even a nifty Rainbow Bridge over which the Gods commute to work.  A Rainbow Parking Lot is under construction. 

Provost and Vice President Loki  (Logi) urges the bereft Rhinemaidens not to worry, even though their Rhingold is gone: After a 72-slide Powerpoint prestentation, he assures them that henceforth they can bask in the newfound radiance of the Gods/adminstrators/BOT.  The  Rhinemaidens can be heard far off singing plaintively, in minor key, "Rheingold, Rheingold, Rheingold" as the glorious Gods pass over the Rainbow Bridge to administrative Valhalla. 

The Rhinemaidens fail at persuading VP Seigfried to return their gold. He refuses and comes to a bad end.

The end of course is Gotterdammerung, Twilight of the Gods, where the funeral pyre of Seigfried catches alight Valahala, and the Rhinemaidens get their gold back. This occurs through no fault of their own,it should be mentioned, and is owing entirely to general administrative incompetence.   

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

University Strategic Plan

 Incorporation of Student Centeredness into the University Strategic Plan 

Monday, August 26, 2013

Proposal Tanks

Tanks a Lot!
The Joint Committee wants to thank Bloggie and those readers who participated in the two “UT Degree Guarantee” proposal surveys. We have we have kicked around the significance of the survey results also have carefully have read over the many “Comments” in response to the proposal. The initial week-long survey showed that there was strong but far from unanimous support for the proposal. So the survey deadline was extended a week. In the second survey the proposal got hammered. 
The Joint Committee has concluded from the comments that opponents of the proposal shared a general animosity toward new proposals. Some of the Committee members conclude that opponents of the proposal rejected it on principle and are disappointed that there was no evidence and that they had bothered to study the merits of the proposal in any great depth.
The Committee acknowledges that there is a “new proposal fatigue” that presently prevails across campus. It is a rare day when the UT campus community is asked to vote on a significant new proposal. We observe, for example, that the decision to serve beer at football games was imposed from above and never a topic widely discussed or voted on prior to implementation.
That is the just way things are done around here and nobody seems to care. Oligarchy prevails. This “UT Degree Guarantee” proposal is now dead in the water. 

Monday, August 12, 2013

Public Comments Requested/Poll


Responding to deepening student and parental concerns about economic security and unsustainable debt loads consequent to higher education, University of Toledo’s Joint Academic Committee proposes a program innovation: The UT Degree Guarantee™.

The UT Degree Guarantee™ warrants the marketability of a UT degree. The University enters into a contract with the student whereupon, if the student satisfies the conditions enumerated below, in the event of being unable to find a job in his or her chosen educational field, the University will make the payments on the student’s educational loan indebtedness until such suitable employment is achieved.

The program offers a number of incentives designed to accommodate committed students. By selecting for highly motivated, productive students, the program assures its own long-range success:         
  •      Students must volunteer and sign a memorandum of understanding to demonstrate commitment, diligence, consistency, and compliance with appropriate levels of academic performance.
  •      The University must aggressively and in good faith seek meaningful, appropriate job placement locally, regionally or in-state for contracting graduating students.
  •      Guaranteed jobs must be local, regional or in-state, in this order of emphasis.
  •       Student educational goals, university coursework and labor market demand matches must be data-driven and transparent at the time the contract is signed. An agreed-upon plan of study reflecting these realities must be implemented and pursued.
  •     The student must maintain a 3.0 overall GPA with acceptable progress toward graduation (a record of completed classes and full time equivalence) 
  •      Students must, prior to entering into the agreement, undergo the Strengthquest aptitude process as offered by the Gallup firm, and which will be made available on the UT campus, as administered by certified UT faculty members, an aptitude metric now is use at a number of top rated universities and business schools.
  •      UT Degree Guarantee™ students must also make use of UT career services, specifically in the areas of resume writing, networking, and interviewing skills.  These include pursuit in good faith of internship opportunities posted at the department and other levels within the university.
  •       Graduates must demonstrate good faith efforts at obtaining employment. 
  •       Changes in contracted student career goals are grounds for mutual renegotiation or termination of the contract.
  •        Freshmen enrolled on the UT Guarantee™ track must negotiate the contract at the completion of 60 credit hours of progress toward the degree, if they have maintained eligibility
  •       UT Guarantee™-track students must meet regularly with special “guarantee” advisors
  •       Transfer students are not eligible to participate in the contracted job guarantee program

The program would be launched as an “experimental” program, and closely monitored via a formal formative evaluation process.   

Returns can be plowed back into costs and scholarships for contracted students in the program.

Owing to the highly motivated nature of the students (and their parents) involved in the program, providing the program is properly monitored in its formative stages, it is most unlikely that the UT Guarantee™ graduates will prove a financial burden to the University. Quite the reverse, would be expected.  Moreover it would incentivize students (and parents) by removing much of the anxiety partial to the inevitable costs of higher education in the U.S.  

The program would establish a reputation for UT, a unique market position, while enhancing the marketability of the UT degree.   

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Faculty Opinion Page

Assoc. Provost Barrett Should Resign

Pres. Jacobs assigned former law professor, John Barrett, the lead in enforcing the Board of Trustees demand that all faculty organizations should add the Supremacy Clause and the Delegation Clause to their constitutions. Not a single one voted to do so.

During the spring, Barrett appeared before the Senate and College Councils to demand this. His tone was threatening. Usually lawyers try to make a persuasive case, but he just seemed to want to rub the faculty’s face in the dirt. Because he could not persuade and could not intimidate the faculty, he was a total failure. He should resign this highly paid position. Alternatively Pres. Jacobs should fire him.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Professor Emeritus Responds

To:  Dr. Lloyd Jacobs, President
From:  Abid A. Al-Marayati, Professor Emeritus
Subject: Tenure Termination
Date:  May 19, 2013
I am writing to you with reference to your letter of May 16, 2013.  Within your letter, you are using the pretext of alleging bad health for terminating me.  I have been teaching for some 44 years at The University of Toledo and have not suffered a medical problem, except for the seasonal malady of the flu.  You cannot state that I am a bad teacher or that I am professionally inactive.
Your and Mr. Kevin West’s claim that there is something wrong with my health, is not true, as I have provided you with a statement from my medical doctor stating that I am competent to teach.  In fact, I question your health and that of Mr. Kevin West.  You and your staff (Dr. Mark Denham, Mr. Kevin West, Mrs. Janelle Schaller, and Dr. Jamie Barlow) are now resorting to health condition.
As a discredited official by the faculty, you are making new rules of procedures.  The faculty has already considered you alien to faculty relations.  In your short period with the administration, you have caused too many problems.
Mr. Kevin West has been making decisions without the support of the faculty.  Mrs. Janelle Schaller made false statements to the Ohio Civil Rights Commission, a state agency.  Dr. Mark Denham falsely stated that I have been absent for a long period of time, whereas I was absent for one class session.  Dr. Jamie Barlowe assumed the position of Dean without consultation with the faculty.
Please Dr. Jacobs go back to your medical profession.  You are not able whatsoever to deal with faculty affairs.
I am noted of being a faithful member of the faculty.  To my credit are many publications and being active professionally.
You provide your associates with large sums of money.  Mr. West receives $179,000; Mrs. Schaller $130,000; Dr. Denham $140,000; and Dr. Barlowe $220,000; all from hard-earned taxpayer dollars.  You have enriched your subordinates at the expense of students who mop floors and flip hamburgers to further their education.
You cannot terminate me as I have been appointed by the Board of Trustees.  Yet, you dismiss the Board of Trustees which has appointed you to your position. 
I believe that you are against tenure which is a basis for the foundation of the University which you seem to ignore.  You have no respect for the policies and procedures of the University and are lacking in conscience.  You terminated me without consultation.  You raise questions while I was not under contract, which reflects your hostility to tenure.
I invite you and your collaborators for a public meeting for the community to examine the style of your administration.
You resorted immediately to termination without giving me my rights or the opportunity to explain.  You have no respect for academic freedom or tenure.  Your actions are dangerous as you are putting an end to the profession of 44 years of a faculty.
Mr. Kevin West arbitrarily withheld the salary of a faculty member.  He even failed to provide me with a grievance committee though he informed me that he was working on restoring the membership.
You and your administration are unscrupulous and have brought a lot of grief onto the faculty and students.  An examination of your administration is very much needed.