Incentivizing Quality Education: UNC System Proposes New Funding Strategy

At the UNC system Board of Governors meeting on January 18, a new funding model was proposed, with some adjustments and feedback discussed at a follow-up meeting on February 23. Since the current funding model is outdated in many ways, a new system has been presented with the hope of encouraging educational quality rather than … Continue reading “Incentivizing Quality Education: UNC System Proposes New Funding Strategy”


Did You Know? Governors Question Transparency, Oversight of Project Kitty Hawk

Project Kitty Hawk, Inc. is a nonprofit ed-tech startup that will partner with UNC System universities to serve adult learners. The idea has great potential. According to the project’s website, it will help universities design workforce-aligned online programs, facilitate improved collaboration among campuses, and develop relationships with North Carolina employers. But at the last meeting … Continue reading “Did You Know? Governors Question Transparency, Oversight of Project Kitty Hawk”


Complete an Online Ph.D. in Under a Year—Too Good to be True?

In the last few years, the higher ed landscape is seeing a steady rise in the number of institutions offering online degrees. Schools like Western Governors University and Grand Canyon University have stepped in to make degrees affordable and attainable for both lower-income students and students for whom traveling to a traditional classroom is seemingly … Continue reading “Complete an Online Ph.D. in Under a Year—Too Good to be True?”


Surprise: The UNC System is Moving!

Last week, the UNC Board of Governors met at NC State’s Hunt Library for its November meeting. In meeting at one of its constituent institutions, the Board is returning to a tradition that was put on hold during COVID: occasionally traveling to each institution in turn in order for Governors to engage with each campus. … Continue reading “Surprise: The UNC System is Moving!”


Sheep No More: the Alumni Rise

In my nearly 15 years as a higher education journalist and analyst, I have, unfortunately, witnessed too few victories for the reform movement. In that time, and certainly for several decades before, academia has continued moving in bad directions. On one hand, it has increasingly submitted to the “alphabet soup” mentality —CRT, DEI, AGW, LGBTQ…,  … Continue reading “Sheep No More: the Alumni Rise”


Did You Know? Some UNC Institutions Are Inefficient

At the September meeting of the UNC Board of Governors, the Budget Committee received an important presentation: UNC System Workforce Trends Part II. The report included detailed data about the growth of university personnel expenditures compared to changes in enrollment and degree completion. Overall, the UNC System spent 18 percent more on salaries in FY … Continue reading “Did You Know? Some UNC Institutions Are Inefficient”


Is it Time to Rethink Tenure?

In a recent article for the Martin Center, Duke professor Mike Munger asked an important question: should “a political board composed of nonacademics…be empowered to evaluate faculty proposals on hiring and curriculum in the first place?” He argued that, in practice, boards have already ceded that authority. For many years, shared governance, at least on … Continue reading “Is it Time to Rethink Tenure?”


Did You Know? New UNC Board of Governors Members

In March, the North Carolina legislature appointed five new members to the University of North Carolina Board of Governors. The new members will start their terms on July 1 and will attend their first full round of meetings on July 21 and 22.  The new members are: John Fraley, House appointee Kirk Bradley, Senate appointee … Continue reading “Did You Know? New UNC Board of Governors Members”


It’s Not About ‘Politics’—The Brouhaha over Nikole Hannah-Jones

Last week, the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill Board of Trustees came under fire for “viewpoint discrimination” over its decision not to offer tenure to Nikole Hannah-Jones, who will join UNC’s Hussman School of Journalism in July. An anonymous source reported that the decision was “a very political thing.” But politics needn’t have come into … Continue reading “It’s Not About ‘Politics’—The Brouhaha over Nikole Hannah-Jones”


UNC’s 1619 Project Hire: A Case Study of Failed University Governance

The recent hiring of New York Times columnist Nikole Hannah-Jones as a faculty member in UNC-Chapel Hill’s Hussman School of Journalism raises serious red flags about how the university is being run. Last week, the Martin Center’s Jay Schalin reported on Hannah-Jones’s appointment to the Knight Chair in Race and Investigative Journalism at UNC. Hannah-Jones … Continue reading “UNC’s 1619 Project Hire: A Case Study of Failed University Governance”