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I Don’t Give Shots…

I’ve found that a lot of folks don’t really understand what someone with a Ph.D. in education does.  They grasp that I teach, but not what I teach.  They somewhat get that I do research, but the fact that the research doesn’t take place in a lab is perplexing.  They are confused by the perpetual […]

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Social Media: Academic Freedom for Whom?

One of my professors recommended that I meet with one of her undergraduate students because we shared similar research interests. I met her at a coffee shop on campus.  It seems natural– the second year PhD student sharing experiences with an undergraduate student planning to apply to a doctoral program. We indeed discussed our similar […]

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Mergers and Aquisitions

It’s March 2011. California’s next governor calls a morning news conference to make a stunning announcement: The Apollo Group’s University of Phoenix will pay $2.3 billion to buy the California State University system. “The previous administration left us with few alternatives,” explains the new governor, who won election on a campaign pledge to end California’s […]

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When Entrepreneurialism “Disrupts” Academic and Artistic Rigor

Imagine, for a moment, the following scenario: A department of economics, with an internationally-respected, highly-selective graduate program that provides full funding for PhD students, receives a $70 million donation from a capital venture fund.  The donation, introduced by prominent figures from the financial investment world (perhaps Robert Kraft or James Dimon), is earmarked for the […]

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What’s in a Title: Non-Profit or For-Profit Colleges

If you’re going to make money as a for-profit college, fair enough.  I understand the strengths and weaknesses of for-profits probably as well as anyone.  I’ve supported them when they are doing what they are supposed to do, and I’ve criticized them when they fall short. My friend and colleague, Bob Shireman, with whom I […]

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Using Qualitative Research to Contest Stereotypes

How are black men portrayed? After Freddie Gray’s death due to the brutality of six Baltimore police officers, newscasts focused on Gray’s criminal record and suspect behavior. When city residents protested, the media became more interested. Reporters searched for provocative stories and trolled for increased viewership. They showed dehumanizing videos of wild mobs looting and […]

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Escaping the Digital

“What’s the Point of a Professor” was a New York Times opinion piece by Mark Bauerlein that has generated wide response and conversation about the role of the professor in the 21st century. Bauerlein argues that professors are becoming more like “accreditors” and fail to inspire and invest in students like the professors of old. Although […]

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What’s in a Name?

A funny thing happened on the way to writing this blog.  I was going to write about the danger in naming buildings after individuals.  Apparently Clemson University won’t rename a building that honors its racist past.  Tillman Hall is named after a white supremacist who boasted of participating in the killings of black people.  The […]

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Creativity: The Key to Future Employment?

This week, while canvassing for research that might help my end-of-semester papers, I came across a recently published report filled with interesting accounts about the difficulties Millennials in California are facing on the job market.  Seemingly every month, similar reports lament the perceived inadequacies of the U.S. workforce.  Many narratives promote a greater investment in […]

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The Demise of Small Liberal Arts Colleges

(Written with James Dean Ward) The small private liberal arts college may soon be an endangered species. About one-third of the nation’s approximately 4,500 private nonprofit and for-profit institutions have student bodies of 1,500 students or less. Of these, roughly half, or 750, are experiencing financial pressures because of bond indebtedness, according to a recently […]

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