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The Veil of Perfection: Academic (In)Vulnerability

In light of the blog I posted last week, I started to think about constructive ways to think about talking about race, racism, and seemingly difficult topics. I want to be clear, I’m not writing this as a pundit on race or Black Studies, because I’m not—I’m writing this simply as a Black man. There […]

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A Tale of the Undocumented (Part 1): A 2000 Mile Journey Across the Border

Nineteen-ninety marked the beginning of a new journey.  My family decided to cross the Rio Grande into the United States. I do not remember much of the journey, since I was only two years old, but my brothers were more aware of the situation at the time. Mexico was facing a recession.  Coming from a […]

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Summing Up III

There is certainly still a lot to write about:  Just recently I saw Happy Valley which is a documentary about the Sandusky Case at Penn State University (tragically illuminating).  I just finished Orlando Patterson’s 700 page text The Cultural Matrix: Understanding Black Youth (an epic tour de force).  This year I’ve been an expert witness […]

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Summing Up II

I noticed a few weeks back that Marquette University, to its considerable credit, has raised its minimum wage for workers to $16.00/hour.  I weighed in on this last year and suggested that USC do something similar.   I also have written about “college for all” and over time have come to see it with mixed emotions.  […]

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Melting in Summer

In the summer after high school graduation, many college-intending students often discover themselves to be without the crucial knowledge, resources and direction necessary to smoothly transition to college.  Though they’ve completed all the high school requirements, been accepted to at least one college, applied for financial aid, and indicated their plans to enroll in postsecondary […]

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Race, Terror, and Tenure – On Collective Outrage

There’s been a lot of talk, criticism, and collective outrage about the decision to weaken tenure and shared governance at University of Wisconsin at Madison. The anger is well founded. Scholars from institutions across the nation and across disciplines expressed their opinions and often harsh criticism of the decision. The widespread response is not a […]

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Summing Up – I

I’ve been doing this blog for over half a decade.  At some point what was irregular in the writing of it, became regular; rather than write a blog every now and then we put out a blog a day.  Various folks in the Pullias Center helped staff and write for it.  We cooked up special […]

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Marketing the College Experience: A Problem for the Online University?

Recently, over 3,000 students who applied to the University of Florida for their undergraduate education received welcome news of their acceptance… with a single caveat: they had to take their entire first year of classes online. Back in September 2013, Florida Governor Rick Scott authorized the creation of UF Online, allocating $35 million over five years […]

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Higher Education in Hong Kong

For the last month I have been in residence as a Fellow at the University of Hong Kong.  The Fellowship is a three-year interdisciplinary arrangement where I am in residence.  My obligations are relatively minor: we outlined a plan over a three year time horizon that involves offering a lecture or two every time I […]

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Alice Goffman, Ethics, and Advising

A few years ago, as a graduate student at USC, I visited the American Sociological Association’s website. A name grabbed my attention. “Goffman,” I thought, “She can’t be related to the Goffman.” Alice Goffman, as it turns out, is the daughter of renowned sociologist Erving Goffman. I hurried to Google. She received her Ph.D. from […]

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