Winston-Salem State tries the Hail Mary pass

In football, the Hail-Mary pass is a last-second, desperation play that has a chance of winning or tying the game, but has a very low probability of success.
Colleges and universities try something like the Hail-Mary when they attempt to use success in athletics as a means of improving their academic reputations and finances. The idea is that winning at sports will transfer over to the institution as a whole, boosting applications and funding. Like the Hail-Mary pass, it’s unlikely to succeed, but college administrators keep trying.



Is America’s College Graduation Rate a “Huge National Problem?”

A recent report published by The Education Trust entitled “A Matter of Degrees: Improving Graduation Rates in Four-Year Colleges and Universities” argues that we ought to be deeply concerned over the fact that only about 60 percent of the students who enroll in four-year institutions in the U.S. earn a bachelor’s degree within six years.


Is America’s College Graduation Rate a “Huge National Problem?”

A recent report published by The Education Trust entitled “A Matter of Degrees: Improving Graduation Rates in Four-Year Colleges and Universities” argues that we ought to be deeply concerned over the fact that only about 60 percent of the students who enroll in four-year institutions in the U.S. earn a bachelor’s degree within six years.



UNC-Chapel Hill suffers from a “raid”

It’s a UNC ritual. Whenever a professor decides to take a better offer at some other university, usually a private one with a vast endowment and enormous alumni contributions, the administration will bemoan the “loss” and express fear over a “crisis” if the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill can’t spend enough money to compete with the top-tier schools. When the little drama is over, the administrators will go back to their offices and hope that they’ve convinced a few more politicians that UNC-CH’s budget must be increased.


Inquiry #16: General Education Requirements at NC Public Universities: What Do Students Get in the Core Curriculum?

Colleges and universities ought to provide their students with a well-rounded education that will equip them for good citizenship and a productive life. Historically, many schools have done that by establishing a core curriculum of courses covering the fields of knowledge that an educated person should be familiar with: American history, the classics of our literature, natural science and mathematics, logic, fine arts, and the social sciences. Throughout the UNC system, few schools insist that their students take courses that would be regarded as crucial components of a sound education.


UNC schools promise strong general education, but do they deliver?

Suppose that you have dropped your son or daughter off at one of the campuses of the University of North Carolina system. You have plenty to worry about: housing, roommates, clothing, money, and so forth. It’s quite a load.

At the risk of further depressing you, there’s one more thing that you should be worrying about, but probably aren’t. That is the college curriculum.


Another Dud for UNC’s Summer Reading Program

Last year, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s summer reading program managed to stir up controversy and even litigation by choosing Michael Sells’ book Approaching the Qur’an as the book incoming freshmen were expected to read. The problem with that book, which overlooks Islam’s propensities toward intolerance and violence, was not that it was promoting religion, but that it was a waste of the students’ time. This year’s choice is no better, and arguably it’s worse. Incoming freshmen are assigned to read Barbara Ehrenreich’s Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America.