Monday, November 28, 2011

This is Unconscionable

One of our new Watson-era administrators is Cheri Sidney, currently (I believe) the Assistant or Associate Vice President of Enrollment Management, a bastion of former City College administrators. Ms. Sidney earns $95,004 per year in this position, a position that seems rather critical to our continuing accreditation given the problems with graduation and retention we have experienced in recent years. Given her nearly $8,000 per month salary, I think it is fair to ask what qualifications she possesses for a job of this importance.

Some time ago, one faculty member attempted to ascertain her educational qualifications. When the administration returned the FOIA, the administration had redacted the information in the section on "highest degree attained." Of course, information available in the public domain provides an alternative to information produced by an administration that is apparently unwilling to respond forthrightly to a legal request. Here is the answer to the question of Cheri Sidney's educational qualifications.

On June 9, 2006, she received a Bachelor of Arts degree in the DePaul University School for New Learning Degree Program. A description of the program follows:

Undergraduate Programs
School for New Learning
If you’re 24 or older and looking for the best way to earn a Bachelor of Arts degree, DePaul's School for New Learning might be the ideal approach. This customized degree program is available via online classes, allowing you to complete your degree at a time and place convenient to you. But a remote location doesn’t mean you will be on your own—you will be regularly connected with faculty, professional experts, and classmates, receiving individualized attention and support throughout your academic program. You will also have access to DePaul's extensive resources, including library, academic and student support services. Here is the website: http://www.depaul.edu/academics/Pages/online-learning.aspx.

On November 9, 2009, the Chicago State administration hired Ms. Sidney for her first job at the university, or at any college as far as I can determine: The Associate Director of Human Resources, at a salary of $90,000 per year. Since she landed the CSU job, Ms. Sidney has only two years of experience in any kind of university management, all at Chicago State.

So, this is what we deserve. I can scarcely imagine anything more insulting to the students, our faculty, our alumni, the taxpayers of Illinois, accrediting agencies, and the Board of Trustees than to have someone with an on-line bachelor's degree and no previous management experience, in a top administrative position in our graduate degree granting institution.

Given the administration's apparent desire to keep this information from the faculty, it seems safe to assume that they know about Ms. Sidney's spectacularly unqualified c.v. If our president is really concerned about this school, its students, its public image, and its continued existence, he will dismiss Ms. Sidney immediately and determine who was responsible for this outrage? Any administrators who, knowing of her inadequate qualifications, participated in her hiring should be subject to disciplinary action.

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