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Saturday, March 30, 2013

The Day of Reckoning Approaches



Anonymous said...

The day of reckoning can't come soon enough. UT is assaulted daily by the Jacobs administration and a complicit BOT. It's all about the money, and money for THEM, not the students. Faculty, staff, students: just say no. No to stupidity, no to administrative excess. Say yes to real education, real student-centeredness.

Anonymous said...

This is systemic breakdown: first of all, K-12 provides little value and meaning to a person's education in the US. Hats off to the schools that are the exception. The higher education bubble will not compensate for the missed opportunity at the lower levels.

The point is that a strong K-8 education provides the foundation of strong 9-12 levels that allow students to prepare for trades and specializations.

And then there is the general education requirement in US universities that eats up half of student funds that could be better used for real competitive training in fields that need college education. True, we live in a democratic society, so all should have the opportunity to pursue dreams but those who do not belong, should be persuaded to consider other career options. General Education is a repetition of what high schools could provide. UK and other European universities do not have that because K-12 provides a strong foundation for that. Also, there is no coursework at the PhD level since the Master-level education provides the strongest foundation for the dissertation-writing stage. Some PhDs are based on publications since it is a ludicrous idea that one cannot have brains without the PhD, and there are a lot of biggots out there who hold this up at their universities (some faculty at UT included). A PhD by publication in the US should be available to those who actively presented and published in refereed and other recognized publications. This would cut down on debt while allowing candidates to stay in jobs they cannot yet afford to leave.

So, here is the worst: Many US students who succeed as undergrads will go into grad school to cover what they could have in the undergrad or at least in part.

Finally, no general education here, but do read on: if you go to a university that only offers a masters in a subject and wish to go on to PhD, the PhD-granting school will likely reject, not recognize, and refuse credit for all the work you have done at the previous school. This ego and territoriality has added significantly to student debt.

Question: What gives faculty in some schools the right to think that other schools do not provide quality education just because they are fortunate to teach at some places? Who the hell are they to validate some knowledge at reject others at the expense of students? Who the hell are they to tell the world that they are better professors than those teaching in schools that do not offer the same specializations?

Surely, those who are against tenure would like to see such faculty to disappear.


Yes -- US higher education (including some schools, their faculty and administrators) is responsible for the debt crisis; while it is faking its democratic principles, it plays into the hands of greedy lending institutions and their cronies in the Education Department who turn the blind eye and let this continue. In turn, this allows the lenders to feed on the dreams of struggling students while the rich students from other countries are streaming in with no financial concerns.

This degradation of the American Higher Education allows such unqualified administrators like Scarborough, Jacobs, and others to decide on the further degradation of schools like the New Community College of Toledo.

These rich foreigners come to the US not because it is the best, but because they might otherwise not make it through the tough selection process of their own universities. They have more opportunities here in the system that sold its original vision to educate Americans for money, and now seeks to attract those who reject US values once they go home.

Anonymous said...

The conclusion is not surprising considering the source of the magazine. However, it does not address all that is assaulting education and the middle class in general. The shift of paying for education has been greatly slanted toward students for the past two decades. Second, there is the artificial suppression of real wages and job growth in our nation. The financial elites have no vision for this nation or the people other than gathering as much money and power unto themselves as possible. For their lack of stewardship, their short-sightedness, lack of vision, and greed is our nation in trouble. They are the ones responsible for this mess and the issues we face. People like the Koch brothers are destroying our nation, not students or faculty.

Anonymous said...

To Anonymous 7:39,

The Reason Foundation (voice of Reason Magazine and of this article) is, as you suggest, partially founded by the Koch brothers who are aligned with the nut jobs at the Heritage Foundation that write the scripts for Hannity (rhymes with insanity), Beck and Limbaugh. All these voices want to run liberal professors out of higher education and seem to be succeeding nationwide as well as on the campus of the University of Toledo. Sure, let's privatize UT and sell off its assets all in the name of "extreme student centeredness." What BOT tripe. Too bad the students, faculty, staff, alumni and surrounding community have to swallow it in order to play ball with Jacobs Inc. It is the only game in town these days.

Anonymous said...

What's so "liberal" about the professors at UT?

Anonymous said...

Tenured liberal professors at UT advantage their relative job security and First Amendment protections to actively critique war, poverty and environmental degradation induced and perpetuated by endemic corporate greed. They object to the use and abuse of the business model in public higher education. They want Jacobs gone.

Anonymous said...

I have been a reader of this forum for several years. I have come to the conclusion that while the faculty has lost control of academics at the University of Toledo, the faculty are unwilling to fight for their academic freedom and thus do not deserve the controls that they once held.

"Freedom" has never been free.

If you are not willing to take the risks necessary to secure academic freedom, then you do not deserve freedom.

If you let the present administration take academics away from the faculty through a forced "University Council" and by restricting academic budgets for other priorities, then you do not deserve otherwise.

If you allow administrative priorities determine what courses are taught and how many students must be in each course, then you deserve the loss of academic quality that you reap.

If you are willing to work without a contract for more than a year, then you do not deserve a union and a valid contract.

You are sheep and cattle that are to be driven from field to slaghterhouse when the time is due.

You have already lost your freedoms but appear to be unable to take action. I agree with Bloggie in his rhetorical question, "Do you deserve the blog?"

Anonymous said...

"Tenured liberal professors at UT advantage their relative job security and First Amendment protections to actively critique war, poverty and environmental degradation induced and perpetuated by endemic corporate greed. They object to the use and abuse of the business model in public higher education. They want Jacobs gone."

Yet I am aware of many faculty members at UT who are not liberal but have the same views. In fact I know several personally who are conservative and even proud to call themselves Republicans who also feel the same about many of those issues including Jacobs and the corporate view taking over higher education in this country.

Anonymous said...

It's certainly true that brain trusts like the Koch Bros believe they can reshape America by rebooting the academy. However, I think what's happening around the country shocks all faculty who don't simply regard employment as professor or lecturer at a university as a paycheck - which is what this fight is really about, isn't it? The Jacobs reboot wants to take people who regard themselves as being well-educated and entrusted with an obligation to "teach" and publish and assist in the running of their departments and universities and turn them into worker drones. And what Jacobs and his kind are saying now is: 'No, forget the professional stuff, if it doesn't help pay admin bonuses, unless you want to do it on your own time of course and pay for it yourself. And yes, thanks for helping out with all the committees and such, but we'll mostly take care of all the important decisions now. And as far as teaching goes, well, your really working stiffs and you should just be happy to have jobs and if you don't like teaching more students and more classes and being told all that education has just turned you into well educated drones then there's the door - after all, it's not like we can't replace you with someone who will be thankful for a job.' Didn't one of the top admins state this explicitly - 'if you don't like the changes at UT, LEAVE, and we will find someone else?'

And as far as faculty - just what EXACTLY do people who post their attacks propose faculty do? Grievances are filed, they are won in arbitration (after 2-3 years), and the admins then take them to court (another 2-3 yr process). And in the last court decision, which the union won, the judge essentially said to UT 'Don't do it again.' Faculty DO have a contract- under the provisions of the contract the old one remains in force until a new one is negotiated. UT is doing nothing to seriously negotiate a new contract, and so the old one has been in effect for almost 2 years now (which bye the way means we still have the same terrific health benefits). Again, what does anyone here propose faculty do about things happening at UT? Legally, as far as I know, there is nothing faculty or the union can do except file grievances, attempt to schedule new contract negotiations, send the check to the lawyers every month, and wait for the next shoe to drop...

Anonymous said...

We can picket. (We cannot go on strike until the BOT tries to impose a contract on us.) We can refuse to recognize the University Council. We can vote down amendments to our constitutions with language dictated by Jacobs. We can stand up for our rights. We can show that true loyalty to UT includes speaking against poorly developed reorganization plans and initiatives that harm our students. We can push back against administrators who put their interests ahead of our students needs.

Anonymous said...

Let's be modest, you could take a monthly vote of no confidence!

Anonymous said...

You can have sit ins, You can organize protests ala the Vietnam Era type. You can write letters to the editors of the Blade and Plains Dealer. You can write letters to national newspapers and publications. You can write op ed pieces. You can create and publish your own newspapers/newsletters for wider circulation. You can make the UT-AAUP newsletters more effective by contributing articles rather than relying upon the two or three regular authors.. You can write to your state legislators. You can vist your state legislators.

It is pathetic that the faculty are not doing this already. You have no future with the current administration and Board of Trustees. It is nice to get your fat paycheck and great health care benefits now but how long do you think these will last? You cannot out wait this administration unless you are willing to rebuild a burnt shell if that much remains when this administration passes on. The time to act is long overdue. The longer you wait, the less resources you will have when you do act. [Remember the Catholics in Nazi Germany]

Anonymous said...

Why don't they demand K12 and K9 to operate as business? Many classes could be eliminated. The entire world operating as business and giving them money? They don't have imagination enough to understand that not everything has to operate as business and investments in the future are necessary. Operating as business is not even consistent with UT mission statement.

Anonymous said...

Day of reckoning perfect storm

Add to the higher ed day of reckoning discussed in the article the coming $1 trillion student loan bubble collapse and the coming collapse of the Fed's artificial QE Keynesian counterfeiting Ponzi scheme scam stock market bubble - all on top of an ailing Obamacare economy that is already on life support and we're looking at an across the board economic and higher ed perfect storm nightmare.

We're going to the (cash in the) mattresses.

"Leave the gun... take the cannoli."

Stockman says get out of stocks now!

Anonymous said...

Owens cutting 30 administrators

Campus graffiti:

"Put Ben and the Gang of 12 back in among the regular inmate population…

…and let the chips fall where they may…"

Expanse scientific said...