I know that the real issue this week is how low will CSU enrollment go. The night of the long knives will take place on Thursday—I think we can anticipate our classes being decimated by course cuts. Everyone is keeping watch on the numbers. How low can we go? Kudos to Prez Watson and his "team." Huzzah CSU Trustees for championing them so faithfully.
In the meantime, did you know about this? Seems the great presidential search at CSU is moving along in spite of the constipated bits of information available on the big-deal CSU presidential search website. On Friday, the Board conducted “airport interviews” (very corporate) of some candidates for prez of CSU. You were not invited. This is a corporate thing. “Privacy” (read: “secrecy”) is paramount. Members of the committee have also been sworn to secrecy—no talking to the constituents they supposedly represent about what the committee does. But of course, the committee represents so few faculty.
Well, so much for all that blather Anthony Young and Nikki Zollar puffed and preened about that this search would be “transparent.” Next thing you know they’ll claim that they believe in “shared governance,” LOL. When was the last time we discussed that seriously here? Rule by fiat from the CSU big house has been the norm since the HLC left campus.
This morning a friend pointed me in the direction of this article and a propos of the secret presidential search it is worth sharing if you haven’t seen it already. Something to think about as we add another president (oh please, please let it be someone with an academic credential of note) to the illustrious line of CSU leadership.
“New Analysis Shows Problematic Boom In Higher Ed Administrators” by Jon Marcus in the Huffington Post.
“At the very least, they say, the continued hiring of nonacademic employees belies university presidents’ insistence that they are doing everything they can to improve efficiency and hold down costs.
“It’s a lie. It’s a lie. It’s a lie,” said Richard Vedder, an economist and director of the Center for College Affordability and Productivity.
“I wouldn’t buy a used car from a university president,” said Vedder. “They’ll say, ‘We’re making moves to cut costs,’ and mention something about energy-efficient lightbulbs, and ignore the new assistant to the assistant to the associate vice provost they just hired.”
Among the comments to the article:
What do all these administrators do all day? They go to meetings with other administrators at which they try to coordinate the crazy quilt of services they represent. They design and implement new technologies that invariably fail because the people who create them have no understanding of the environments in which they will be used. They draft new policies and procedures that no one in the academic departments has the time to learn or follow. If we were starting from scratch who in their right mind would create a system like this?
Bart Grossman · Albany, California