Tag: professors

Are We Caving in to the Mob–or Not?

 

Last week I was delighted to hear that Charles Negy, an Associate Professor at the University of Central Florida won his job back in an arbitration battle with the university, including back pay and benefits. His “crime?” A tweet he posted about African Americans:

Sincere question: If Afr. Americans as a group, had the same behavioral profile as Asian Americans (on average, performing the best academically, having the highest income, committing the lowest crime, etc.), would we still be proclaiming ‘systematic racism’ exists?

As a result, he became the subject of a petition signed by 28,000 people, and 300 people were interviewed for the university’s investigation, yet the arbitrator made the following points:

What I Have Seen at Public University

 

Max (not his real name) was worried. “I just don’t know if I’m a good enough writer. I don’t have any confidence that what I have to say makes sense.” It was a private conversation between a student and a professor. I pointed at the projection screen. “Whose paper did I just show to the class?” A few moments earlier, with his permission, I had shown his written work as an example to everyone. My voice conveyed serious generosity. I did not give him the opportunity to respond. I clapped him on the shoulder and announced, “You got chops, man! Hear me when I say, ‘You’re a good writer!’” A sheepish smile spread across his face. Max just needed encouragement. No matter what a student writes about, my job is to come alongside to inspire.

One undergraduate wrote about race cars, another about near-death experiences. Someone else regaled the benefits of “man’s best friend,” still a different student reported being a victim of a DUI. A critique of Barbie dolls was the premise that questioned artificial beauty standards imposed on young women. Defending and uplifting the art world was accomplished by a masterful dialogue paper where promotions and objections were all considered. “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle” was well presented. Getting children outside to play, removing the constant use of “screens” by primary ages, warned against electronic stimulation on a child’s brain. BDSM used as a therapeutic tool was the resource promoted by a person who seemed to speak out of personal experience. Social stigmas related to masculinity, specifically, how men could dress in dresses, was a paper that spoke to the subject carefully while giving examples from his own personal life. Should “one nation under God” be in the Pledge of Allegiance? Should church leaders be celebrated? Interests span a wide range in a public university freshman class.

The subjects are as varied as my students. One young man, a Chinese American, recounted the diligence of his parents to work 14-hour days so that he might have a better life growing up in America. One young woman, a Mexican American, berated her parents, loathing her life, for the expectations placed on her by a couple who worked long hours so that she could go to college. Another woman struggled with the negative, repressive teaching she received from her church about sex and her slide into sexual freedom that caused her great pain. One more teenager spoke out about the imposition employers laid on young workers, requiring additional hours of labor for substandard pay. A young man gave acclaim to his father who had taught him the wonder of caring for wildlife. Another man questioned the overriding, negative impact that virtual reality could have on perceptions of the real world. And a young woman, obviously hurt by flippant words, reprimanded her own generation’s use of “texting” as a communication tool.

Encouraging and Caring for Public University Students

 

There was a line of students to see me after my “Reading, Writing & Inquiry” class had ended. I had been commending the class’s written assignments and half a dozen college students wanted further comment on their work. The group had been given an assignment to discuss their favorite book, writing, or activity. One young man had contributed a tremendous piece on race car design. Showering encouragement on his work, I suggested that his input demonstrated a care for human life. Some students wrote about overcoming trauma. Others wrote about their deepest care for others.

One young woman wanted a bit more of my time. She asked to see me after class. We found a table outside the classroom.

Sitting across from me, she gushed, “I just have so many ideas for the next assignment, I just don’t know which one to pick! Would you help me?!”

At the University of Tulsa in Oklahoma, Professor Jacob Howland writes in City Journal, “a new administration has turned a once-vibrant academic institution with a $1.1 billion endowment and a national reputation in core liberal arts subjects into a glorified trade school with a social-justice agenda.” Speaking with Seth Barron, Howland describes how, in early April, TU’s new administration announced a wholesale reorganization of academic departments, including the elimination of traditional liberal arts majors. Students and faculty have responded by organizing protests and launching a petition to “save the heart and soul of the University of Tulsa.”

Member Post

 

I have mentioned before that I decided to go back for a Master’s degree after receiving my Bachelor’s 13 years prior. My program is made up of about 25 students; only five of which (including myself) are over 35 and have careers. I am a lifelong Conservative, and remember back when I was in undergrad […]

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