"I know no safe depository of the ultimate powers of the society but the people themselves; and if we think them not enlightened enough to exercise their control with a wholesome discretion, the remedy is not to take it from them, but to inform their discretion by education. This is the true corrective of abuses of constitutional power." - Thomas Jefferson 1820

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Monday, September 12, 2011

What's the Purpose of University Today? Academic Learning or Learning Identity Through Diversity? UPDATED.

Parents send college for advanced learning, right? Check out Althouse on an interesting meeting at the University of Wisconsin:

"This afternoon a troubling communication was brought to my attention that involves a threat to our diversity efforts."

"I invite you to an urgent meeting this evening at 8:00 in the MSC Lounge in the Red Gym to discuss this matter. While last minute, I urge you to participate so we can be in community regarding our response."

What's going on?!

A reader had an idea:

Horrors, the Center for Equal Opportunity is going to have a PRESS CONFERENCE at 11am and a DEBATE at 7pm. That's what they're afraid of: advocacy.

Beware: "Students' sense of identity may be threatened. Be prepared."

9/12/11 10:01 PM


Why should students be worried their "sense of identity" might be threatened?

From "The Young Progressives" Facebook information page:

The Young Progressives, a University of Wisconsin-Madison political organization and the official Organizing for America team on campus, is a community coalition devoted to increasing political awareness in our local communities. We are college students, we are informed citizens, and we are future leaders ready to take on corporate interests and fight corruption within our government.

BREAKING: A radical right-wing think tank, the "Center for Equal Opportunity," will launch an attack on UW-Madison's diversity programs tomorrow. Their attack will begin with a press conference at 11 am at the Doubletree Hotel, where they may file a lawsuit against the university. At 7 pm, their president will participate in a scheduled debate against a UW law professor re: ending affirmative action. Students' sense of identity may be threatened. Be prepared

Maybe that's the "troubling communication" that threatens the university's diversity efforts. I wonder if it gives as much attention and call to action to student academic achievement as it does to student diversity programs. What is the purpose of a university? To prepare students to be STEM ready or focused on "sense of identity" based on race, gender or sexual orientation?

From Althouse:

UPDATE: Well, it's not that we fell in the U.S. News rankings. Last year:
The University of Wisconsin-Madison ranked 13th among public institutions in rankings released today (Tuesday, Aug. 17) in the U.S. News & World Report's 2011 Edition of America's Best Colleges.

UW-Madison also tied for 45th among 262 national doctoral universities. In the 2010 edition, the university ranked ninth among public institutions and tied for 39th among national doctoral universities.
This year, we've gone up to 10th among public institutions and 42d among national universities.

Maybe that's the point the university is missing: focusing on "who you are" (identity) vs. "what you know" dilutes the academic reasons to obtain a higher education degree. Let's go back to the title of the meeting of the university's message:

"This afternoon a troubling communication was brought to my attention that involves a threat to our diversity efforts."

Falling rankings involves a threat to "our diversity efforts?" What does the university mean by this statement?

1 comment:

  1. " Students' sense of identity maybe threatened. Be prepared"

    That is just so incredibly sick. No better word for it. Sick.


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