How Not to Recover from a Crisis, Mizzou Edition

The University of Missouri, where I teach and which I dearly love, is in crisis. Freshman enrollment at the university’s Columbia campus (Mizzou) is down by a whopping 35% from two years ago. Missouri’s governor and legislature slashed Mizzou’s state appropriation by $22 million this year. Administrators have responded by cutting Mizzou’s operating budget by … Continue reading “How Not to Recover from a Crisis, Mizzou Edition”


The Chinese Don’t Like Academic Freedom, So American Schools Should Avoid Their Confucius Institutes

Academic freedom has long been a guiding principle for American colleges and universities: Neither faculty nor students should be told what to say or punished for saying whatever they think. That principle has been under attack in recent years as militants try to drive out those who dissent from their beliefs, but for the most … Continue reading “The Chinese Don’t Like Academic Freedom, So American Schools Should Avoid Their Confucius Institutes”


Grade Inflation Just Got Respectable: The New Eligibility Rule Governing Georgia’s HOPE Scholarship

Georgia’s HOPE Scholarship is now in its twenty-fourth year of existence. Originally the brainchild of then Governor Zell Miller, since 1993 this merit-based scholarship program has distributed in excess of $9 billion in lottery proceeds to about 1.7 million qualifying recipients. In order to be eligible for HOPE, which covers about 80% of tuition at … Continue reading “Grade Inflation Just Got Respectable: The New Eligibility Rule Governing Georgia’s HOPE Scholarship”


Secretary DeVos Begins to Rectify the Title IX Mistake

It is very rare for a federal agency to admit having made a mistake and rarer still for the secretary of a cabinet department to announce a U-turn in policy in a heavily publicized speech. But that is exactly what Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos did on September 7. Speaking at George Mason University, Secretary … Continue reading “Secretary DeVos Begins to Rectify the Title IX Mistake”


Closing the Gap at North Carolina’s Historically Black Universities

Earlier this month, the Triangle Business Journal revealed that graduates from North Carolina’s Historically Black College and Universities (HBCUs) are lagging their peers in terms of median salary after graduation. As the state bolsters its efforts to attract more students to its public HBCUs, it’s especially important to discover the cause of such disparities and … Continue reading “Closing the Gap at North Carolina’s Historically Black Universities”


Contra the “McDonaldization” of Higher Education

The term “McDonaldization” was coined by sociology professor George Ritzer in 1993. He meant for it to describe “the industrial process of rationalization that [was] expanding beyond industry into the cultural and educational spheres.” Ritzer’s term caught on and in 2002, Dennis Hayes and Robin Wynyard applied it to higher education in a book they … Continue readingContra the “McDonaldization” of Higher Education”


It’s Not Just Students Who Suffer Under Title IX’s Unfair Procedures

Most people working within the halls of academia are at least somewhat familiar with the excesses having to do with infringement of due process, free speech, and basic rights under the current Title IX regime. The cases that have made headlines and filled books have mainly involved male students who have been falsely accused. But … Continue reading “It’s Not Just Students Who Suffer Under Title IX’s Unfair Procedures”


Segregated Student Housing: Exclusion in the Name of Inclusion

Irwin Holmes was in his living room, a laptop computer in front of him, a pile of reading materials stacked next to him, and his wife seated nearby when he heard the news. North Carolina State University might create segregated student housing for African American women. When he learned his alma mater already had exclusive … Continue reading “Segregated Student Housing: Exclusion in the Name of Inclusion”


Should the Confederate Monuments Stay or Go?

It’s been more than two weeks since white nationalists gathered in Charlottesville, Virginia, to march against the removal of a Robert E. Lee statue and chant racist slogans. Social media captured the ensuing chaos and violence in real-time: a white nationalist terrorist rammed his car into a crowd of counter-protestors, killing one woman and injuring … Continue reading “Should the Confederate Monuments Stay or Go?”


Higher Education’s Diversity Obsession: A Bad Bargain

The obsession with diversity is so widespread among American colleges that it has become a normal part of campus life. Just what “normal” looks like is revealed in a new book based on extensive interviews with “whites” and “students of color” at Harvard University and Brown University, The Diversity Bargain: And Other Dilemmas of Race, … Continue reading “Higher Education’s Diversity Obsession: A Bad Bargain”