Thursday, July 2, 2009

UC San Diego Faculty Statement on Budget Crisis

June 15, 2009
Dear

I write on behalf of an array of departmental chairs from all parts of the campus – the physical and biological sciences, the social sciences, engineering, the humanities, and the arts, plus the chair of the department of the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, to express our collective sense of dismay, frustration, and anger at what is being done to the University of California. For years our budget has lagged behind our needs, and the university has suffered from a slow degradation in its quality, and in the quality of education it offers to the citizens of California. The cuts to our operating budget have essentially been spread equally across campuses and units, without much pretense at selectivity, depriving the excellent along with the less so, damaging morale and the very fabric of an institution that makes extraordinary contributions to our state and nation. The plans we have heard outlined for 2009‐10, 2010‐11, and the next five years, go far beyond what we have experienced so far. We believe that if these plans are implemented, the University of California as we know it will be dead – reduced to a mediocre shell of what it once was. If we are lucky, we will end up as just one of many mediocre state university systems.

The proposed actions presented to us at the June General Campus chairs’ meeting essentially amounted to throwing in the towel. Rather than discussing entrepreneurial solutions that might mitigate the budget damage, coupled with intelligent and selective cuts designed to protect the core mission of the university, these proposals continued the policy of incremental pain under the guise of “everything is on the table”, ratcheted up to the point where excellence will vanish at the university. These proposals guarantee that as soon as the economy improves private universities will take our very best faculty, save those close to retirement, and those contemplating retirement will do so. That will, of course, have permanent and catastrophic effects on our academic reputation, from which we shall never recover. To recover from this blow would require, in the first instance, attracting the best people to what will (rightly) be seen as an inferior institution, which will require paying over the odds (financially and otherwise) – and we know that will be impossible. In any event, the plans to shrink permanent faculty by almost 25 per cent to balance the books means that these people will simply not be replaced.

Such an outcome will produce a steadily tightening vicious circle, because we shall simultaneously be experiencing a reverse multiplier effect: our best and brightest will take their major grants with them, so indirect cost recovery will diminish sharply, which will further exacerbate both the reputational and budgetary problems, which will further the exodus of the next tier of faculty. That problem will intensify as services on campus are cut, damaging the necessary support for research, affecting our teaching mission, worsening the day‐to‐day environment, and impelling those of us who have choices to bail out. It does no good to point to others’ current misery, and suggest that as a result all will be well. The depressed state of the economy and the stock market is not permanent, but our losses will be. As soon as we see an economic rebound, the exodus will begin . And the excellence that has always characterized the University of California will slowly (or not‐so slowly) erode into mediocrity.

The first option that was laid before us was a possible 5 per cent pay cut, which, so we were told, would net the campus $20million, and Academic Affairs half that, or $10million, out of $90million. (Today, rumors suggest that cut may be as much as 10 per cent.) It is well known that UC faculty are already 20‐30 per cent behind our peers in compensation even before such a cut, and will take a 2 per cent pay cut soon when contributions to our unstable pension system resume (another reason to leave). More importantly, as was pointed out at our meeting, to begin at pay cuts as the first solution is to admit defeat and invite the vicious circle. Add in the proposal that the faculty/student ratio decline by a third and the prospect of increasing numbers of graduate students will disappear and our predictions of faculty departures probably err on the low side.

We know the response to all this will be “we live in hard times, and politically difficult times, so what do you propose instead?” We propose that we engage in some radical rethinking. What follows are a few such ideas, some of which may require refinement or could be replaced by better ones.

1. Immediately enroll 500 more out of state students per year for the next four or more years. The increased tuition money would stay on this campus, and four years out would amount to $44 million per annum, almost half our deficit. This step should not be done stealthily. It is very important, to the contrary, that we proceed transparently. We must explain to the California taxpayers why we are forced to take this step, and educate them about the magnitude of the cuts we have taken in state support over the last decade; the potentially fatal impact of these new rounds of cuts on the very thing that makes a UC education special for their children, the opportunity to be taught by world‐class research faculty; and the contributions such a step can make to keeping the university in the forefront of knowledge creation and in preparing the highly educated workforce that is the state's ultimate salvation. We note that in fall 2008 only 5.9% of our undergraduates were non‐resident, compared to 9.7% at Berkeley and 9.5% at UCLA.

We also note that in fall 2008 at the well‐regarded University of Michigan, 35% of undergraduates were non‐resident. Admitting more out‐of‐state students will cross‐subsidize California residents by helping to maintain professor‐to‐student ratios and to reduce or eliminate the planned cuts to teaching assistant and temporary (lecturer) funds. Admitting more students from other states would also enhance UCSD's national reputation and it will benefit California in the long run since a significant number of American students who go to university out of state end up settling in the state where they attended university. It is in California's interest to attract some of the best and the brightest high school graduates from around the country, to provide them with a world‐class education and then to reap the tax revenues that result when these university graduates enter California's workforce. We recommend that over the summer you convene a committee to develop a plan to enroll significantly more out‐of‐state undergraduates next year.

2. Generate defensible estimates of our strictly economic contribution to the state’s economy, via an educated workforce, spin‐off companies, federal funds attracted, etc, etc, and repeat that number relentlessly to force it into the consciousness of the public and the politicians. That is the golden egg that is in jeopardy. We find it surprising that this has not been done already. Every official in the UC system, every media report, every media release should have included this same number over the last year. To drive home the point the numbers begin to make, the campus could also compile a list of 5‐10 pieces of faculty research in the past decade that have transformed our knowledge and improved human welfare, and supplement that with a similar list of spin‐off corporations and technologies (Qualcomm obviously prominent among them) that have transformed the economy of the region and the state. Again, these lists must be hammered home over and over again, like an annoying advertisement that enters everyone’s consciousness.

3. Establish different budget priorities for the profiles of different UC campuses. Every state system of public education save California manages to sustain (at best) one flagship campus. Many, including such states as New York, New Jersey, and Massachusetts, do not manage even that. We pretend we have ten such campuses. In better times, there were in reality four flagships (Berkeley, UCLA, UCSD, and – in its highly specialized way, UCSF). Rather than destroying the distinctiveness and excellence at Berkeley, UCLA, and UCSD by hiring temporary lecturers to do most of the teaching (and contribute nothing to original research, nothing to our reputation, nothing to the engine of economic growth a first rate research university represents), we propose that you urge the President and Regents to acknowledge that UCSC, UCR, and UC Merced are in substantial measure teaching institutions (with some exceptions – programs that have genuinely achieved national and international excellence and thus deserve separate treatment), whose funding levels and budgets should be reorganized to match that reality.

We suggest, more generally, that in discussions systemwide, you drop the pretence that all campuses are equal, and argue for a selective reallocation of funds to preserve excellence, not the current disastrous blunderbuss policy of even, across the board cuts. Or, if that is too hard, we suggest that what ought to be done is to shut one or more of these campuses down, in whole or in part. We have suffered more than a 30 per cent cut in our funding from the state, and we can thus no longer afford to be a ten campus system – only a nine, or an eight (and a half) campus system. Corporations faced with similar problems eliminate or sell off their least profitable, least promising divisions. Even General Motors, which for decades resisted this logic, to its near‐fatal cost, is lopping off Hummer, Buick, GMC, Opel, Saab and who knows what else.

On a systemwide level, more substantial sums could be raised, though not immediately, by expanding an existing resource: the UC Education Abroad Program has been highly successful academically, and study abroad is increasingly attractive to this generation of students. Yet this asset, built up over decades, now seems increasingly neglected and run down. It could, with a modicum of entrepreneurship, be translated into a source of revenue. Syracuse University, for instance, which opens its programs to outside students, charges very profitable fees to those it enrolls. Why can’t UC do the same? We suspect that, if the ingenuity and knowledge of the faculty were tapped, other sources of raising revenue or cutting costs could be uncovered. Why not ask for ideas, and actively investigate those that seem promising? We are, after all, in this together, and collectively the intellectual resources of this university are almost unmatched. Some final remarks: when the previous budget cuts were announced, we were told that priority was being given to protecting the core academic mission of the university. That presumably is the faculty, teaching, and the necessary library resources that are the domain of Academic Affairs (plus Scripps). Yet it transpires that Academic Affairs, which accounts for 49 per cent of the campus budget, absorbed 49.5 per cent of the previous rounds of cuts. This is clearly not protecting the core academic mission of the university! Specifically, we recommend that the percentage of cuts to academic affairs (including the department of the Scripps Institution of Oceanography) be decreased significantly to protect the core academic mission of the university. If this does not happen, talk of protecting the core is essentially meaningless. We would also like a better understanding of why this decision was made in the first place.

We suggest that all professional schools have to stand on their own, raising fees as they need to and can, with no subsidy from Academic Affairs. We know that, despite assurances to the contrary, both Skaggs pharmacy and the Rady business schools had to be funded in part by subventions from Academic Affairs. However desirable and worthy those enterprises are, they cannot be regarded as the central mission of the University of California, and they ought, if necessary, to charge market rate tuition to fund their operations.

In sum, we urge you to break from the pattern of across the board, incremental cuts. Politicians typically choose this option to avoid complaint. It is far easier to announce a certain percentage cut across units rather than to make the hard decisions of eliminating something completely. It is simply not the case that all campus entities are of equal value to our goals. But such an across the board strategy strikes a mortal blow to a university. The core – not 65% of everything ‐‐ must be saved at all costs; without it, the University of California as we know it, will die.

We respect the fact that dozens if not hundreds of University employees have been working hard to create solutions to this crisis. We also know that many discussions may have centered on the ideas that we have expressed here. But the actions we have seen implemented and proposed to date are extremely troubling to the faculty. We are told that “everything is on the table” but that is only a half truth: what is on the table seems to have already been prioritized, and simply awaits to be implemented in an order that the faculty are kept in the dark about, and to which we have no input.

The faculty knows that the fiscal crisis is real. The faculty knows that things cannot move forward as before. And the faculty knows that they will be required to make some difficult choices in their own institutions. But the faculty do not know the overall strategy being implemented by the University, and are deeply troubled by positions and actions that do not seem to protect the core mission of the university, despite assurances of the contrary. What they see is that the future of this great institution is in peril, and that this institution is likely to die a slow death from a thousand cuts, the inevitable result of continuing down the pathways we have heard outlined to date.

Instead, we must genuinely make it a priority to maintain UCSD (and UC) as world class institutions; explore ways to generate new resources, which obviously will not be forthcoming from the state and taxpayers; and insist that cuts must be targeted rather the result of a meataxe approach, focused on sustaining the things that make this an institution to which many of us have devoted our careers. It is time to fight for our future.

Yours sincerely,
Andrew Scull
Distinguished Professor and Chair, Sociology

Supported and endorsed by the following General Campus chairs:

Rand Steiger
Chair, Department of Music
Anirvan Ghosh
Chair, Neurobiology Section
Director, Neurosciences Graduate Program
Paul Linden
Chair, Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
Clark Gibson
Chair, Department of Political Science
Director of International Studies
John Wixted
Chair, Department of Psychology
Lawrence Larson
Chair, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Kenneth Vecchio
Chair, Department of NanoEngineering
Robert Continetti
Chair, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry
John Moore
Chair, Department of Linguistics
Rick Firtel
Associate Dean for Operations
Division of Biological Sciences
Gilbert Hegemier
Chair, Department of Structural Engineering
David O. Brink
Chair, Department of Philosophy
Shankar Subramaniam
Chair, Department of Bioengineering
Julian Betts
Chair, Department of Economics
John Marino
Chair, Department of History
Stephen Hedrick
Chair, Section of Molecular Biology
Brian Maple
Chair, Department of Physics
Dan Hallin
Chair, Department of Communication
Marta Kutas
Chair, Department of Cognitive Science
Douglas Bartlett
Chair, Scripps Institution of Oceanography
Keith Marzullo
Chair, Department of Computer Science and Engineering
Amanda Datnow
Professor and Director, Education Studies

30 comments:

xicano said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
xicano said...

Although the tone of Professor Scull's letter gives the impression that he is contesting the current regime, in many ways the logic of what he proposes coincides perfectly with where the UC was heading long before the economic crisis.

If privatization of the UC is to continue, more out of state students and more international students will be admitted. This has been a shift desired by some for several years now. The mission of the UC that says we should be serving the people of California is sacrificed on the altar of revenue flow.

Once the UC becomes a private school working class and minority students will slowly disappear. Again, this is already happening due to increased tuition (which Scull supports) and enrollment caps. But if UC were to adopt Scull's plan and wipe out the campuses with the most underrepresented students--Riverside and Merced--you accelerate the process. Of course, this has already happened at the professional schools where blacks and chicanos can be counted on one hand. In Scull's scenario, by 2030 when Latinos will make up a majority of the state not just the professional schools but the entire UC will be closed to all but a very few of them.

Scull is basically proposing a "disaster capitalism" solution in which the crisis allows those at the top to maintain their privilege, e.g. faculty, facilitates privatization, and further fetishizes the notion of "excellence." It's disappointing to see that so many department chairs at UCSD (many well meaning liberals) signed on to the letter.

I don't think Yudof or anyone else at OP would have a problem with Scull's proposals if they thought they could get away with them politically.

Jorge Mariscal
UC San Diego

Kirsten said...

De acuerdo, Jorge.

And what do Scull et al suggest we do with all the faculty now holding tenure at the three "teaching" campuses? Following the Swiftian logic of the letter, we could appoint a special systemwide CAP to come up with a metric for overall research impact, teaching effectiveness at the undergraduate and graduate levels, and contribution to stated UC-wide goals (not excluding diversity). Everyone in the system would be measured by it. Those who scored highest would get reassigned to one of the 'flagships'; the rest, left to sink. You can bet that a not insubstantial number of faculty at Berkeley, UCLA, and UCSD wouldn't make the cut, and some of us lowly "teachers" would.

Seriously, you cannot imagine how incredibly demoralizing and painful it has been to see fellow UC faculty members undercut each other so savagely in the name of survival. It would have been one thing to have a letter signed by one or two cranks, but to have all these department chairs--including those from fields in which UCSC has a very strong national reputation, such as linguistics and marine science--lend their names publicly to such a proposal is shocking and sad. I speak only from my local case, but I can't imagine this is going down well at Merced or Riverside (or Davis, Irvine, and Santa Barbara) either.

Kirsten Silva Gruesz
Professor of Literature
UC Santa Cruz

Lisa Hajjar said...

I finally read this letter, about which there has been so much negative discussion. Indeed, there is much to criticize and the item that has earned the most righteous scorn is the suggestion (# 3) to cut out Merced, Riverside and Santa Cruz.

However, I find the argument about the multiple benefits of admitting more out-of-state students to be clear and compelling, and I agree. At this moment, we are facing a choice: save "the university" (which requires MORE revenue, LESS cuts) OR the desirable but impractical stance of simply fighting cuts.

I urge people to read the section about out-of-state students. I reproduce it here:

Immediately enroll 500 more out of state students per year for the next four or more years. The increased tuition money would stay on this campus, and four years out would amount to $44 million per annum, almost half our deficit. This step should not be done stealthily. It is very important, to the contrary, that we proceed transparently. We must explain to the California taxpayers why we are forced to take this step, and educate them about the magnitude of the cuts we have taken in state support over the last decade; the potentially fatal impact of these new rounds of cuts on the very thing that makes a UC education special for their children, the opportunity to be taught by world‐class research faculty; and the contributions such a step can make to keeping the university in the forefront of knowledge creation and in preparing the highly educated workforce that is the state's ultimate salvation. We note that in fall 2008 only 5.9% of our undergraduates were non‐resident, compared to 9.7% at Berkeley and 9.5% at UCLA.

We also note that in fall 2008 at the well‐regarded University of Michigan, 35% of undergraduates were non‐resident. Admitting more out‐of‐state students will cross‐subsidize California residents by helping to maintain professor‐to‐student ratios and to reduce or eliminate the planned cuts to teaching assistant and temporary (lecturer) funds. Admitting more students from other states would also enhance UCSD's national reputation and it will benefit California in the long run since a significant number of American students who go to university out of state end up settling in the state where they attended university. It is in California's interest to attract some of the best and the brightest high school graduates from around the country, to provide them with a world‐class education and then to reap the tax revenues that result when these university graduates enter California's workforce. We recommend that over the summer you convene a committee to develop a plan to enroll significantly more out‐of‐state undergraduates next year.

Greggor said...

I also read this letter after first hearing much criticism.

I appreciate the desire of Scull et al to improve the quality of excellence in the UC System. I even trust that several ideas, including the one concerning increased enrollment of out-of-state students, are worth examining further for practicality and worth. We are indeed fortunate to have faculty in this system that seek to play an active role in addressing the financial dilemma at hand.

This said, I am appalled by the suggestion to shut down UC Merced, UC Riverside, and/or UC Santa Cruz. As many of us have observed already, there are quite a few difficult -- perhaps unsettlingly difficult -- decisions that must be made to preserve the functionality and excellence of the UC system. Yet the mere thought of closing a campus to make up for our financial shortcomings had never crossed my mind as a likely, feasible, or humane option. I reserve the right to speak only of UC Santa Cruz, but I must say that programs such as the genome sequencing project have been largely important in forming the reputation of not only UCSC, but the UC system as a whole. Cutting back funding on research is an unavoidable outcome of this financial crisis. However, curtailing funding especially for UCSC in particular, simply because it lacks the prestige of some of our older campuses, would be an astounding lapse of judgement. Closing the campus entirely would be inexcusable.

Call me naive, but I believe that what Professor Scull and these twenty-two department chairs have done here is monstrous, and it sets the precedent for such proposals in the future. Frankly, it's disgusting. I think that nothing short of a letter of apology, signed by Scull and twenty-two specific department chairs, directed to the students and faculty of UCSC, UCM, and UCR would be adequate reparation for the outrageous and shameless insults we have endured today.

Alex Rovnyansky
Student, Department of Computer Engineering
UC Santa Cruz

Sidney Carton said...

As both an employee and student at UCR, might I humbly suggest that the next time Professor Scull and his colleagues wish to volunteer someone's head for the chopping block, they start with themselves.

ubergeek said...

...just proves the snobbery and elitism present in a PUBLIC institution like UC.

And these people call themselves peers, scholars and researchers?

Goes to show, when the cash dries up, everyone turns on each other.

Oh, and fuck that theory about cutting costs. These turds don't propose to cut costs, just "re-allocate" these to their personal wallets.

A most endearing and heart pounding "FUCK YOU" from UC Santa Cruz. You can take the School of Engineering from my cold dead hands.

Slade Villena
Student, Computer Science: Game Design.

Brynn said...

I agree, Jorge, Kirsten, Alex, and Sidney.

As a staff member at UCSD, may I just add that after reading Professor Scull's letter, you'd think the university functioned solely on the efforts of faculty and upper management. Staff--seemingly invisible to Prof Scull, and whose salaries have been falling behind the cost-of-living for decades--are due to suffer salary cuts starting at 4% and going up. Rumors abound of parking fee hikes, cuts in alternative transportation, and the loss of other perks that lure employees to UC despite the low salaries.

The looming cuts are being decided primarily based on the “bottom line,” ignoring intangibles like quality of education, diversity of students, transportation and its effects on the environment, a mandate to teach California residents, etc., etc. What is cut will be determined by the rich and powerful, who will be sure to protect their own. The poor and disenfranchised can console themselves with fantasies of one day winning the lottery, being drafted into the NFL, being picked for the latest incarnation of “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire,” or working one day for the likes of Goldman Sachs.

Mark said...

Intra-UC fighting of that sort doesn't seem like a particularly good can of worms to open up. How do we determine flagshipness? Is UCSD actually a flagship, to begin with? As a non-Californian academic, I was somewhat surprised to see the flagships listed as Berkeley/LA/SD: my personal evaluation of consensus would've put Berkeley and UCLA as the two flagships, with the rest being only flagship in specific areas (UCSD's computer science is good; UCSC's astronomy is good; etc.).

sadako_hime said...

Is Professor Scull proposing a "blame-storming" session?

Sam said...

I agree with much of what you said, but you're joking if you think UCSD comes anywhere close to being a flagship school. Santa Barbara and Irvine have passed you up in recent years.

Jason said...

I live in Fresno and we're going to have our city's funding (along with every other California city) cut by 5%. I'm of the mind that instead of having my city's funding cut we completely destroy another city, maybe more if that ensures my city's funding isn't cut!

Here's an idea: give the city of San Diego back to Mexico and focus on California's "Flagship" cities of Los Angeles, San Francisco, Fresno and - in it's highly specialized way, Sacramento.

When will the state realize that not all cities are created equal? We the people of Fresno propose that San Diego is in substantial measure a comic convention city.

So save the city in California EVERYONE goes to visit, Fresno, from any cuts by redrawing the border of California to be just above Escandido! I mean GM did it or something, I don't know we're Fresno, FRESNO! We rock!

Signed by:
The entire populace of the most world famous, most flagship, most AWESOME city of FRESNO!

adrienne said...

I don't think it's a good idea to shut down schools, but uneven budget cuts based on performance make sense to me. Why ruin flagship institutions when there are other schools with less reputation and fewer top-notch faculty to lose? I feel like there is ground between "shutting down universities" and "everyone gets cut evenly."

UC Berkeley graduate student

Greggor said...

Perhaps, Adrienne, we should take care which institutions we call "flagship" campuses. I chose UCSC over UC Berkeley and UCLA, both of which accepted me directly into my major field of study.

Berkeley and UCLA excel at maintaining time-honored traditional education and prestigious faculty, but UCSC has one of the most rapidly improving computer engineering programs and by far the most beautiful campus. ;)

Alex Rovnyansky
Student, Computer Engineering Dept
UC Santa Cruz

Danius said...

A comment from Prof. Krossbeaunes, UCSC

To Prof. Scull, I say, “Arrrrgghhhh!!!” He and his 22 fellow pirates are on sinking flagships, so of course they are trying to claw their way into lifeboats. I propose precisely the opposite solution. The flagship campuses Prof. Scull refers to are listing badly to port. It’s time for them to let younger, vigorous campuses lead the way into the future: UC Merced, Riverside, Santa Cruz, Santa Barbara and Davis. This modest proposal to turn four old leaky flagships into teaching institutions would swiftly resolve UC’s financial problems.

Steve said...

I feel as though many of the comments are missing what I see as the main point of this letter. Professor Scull offered three suggestions, with varying levels of specificity, as a first attempt at handling the budget crisis without UC becoming one of the "mediocre state university systems." The merits of these three proposals can be debated and they can be implemented, modified, or rejected, as is appropriate for the proposal. In Professor Scull's own words, the proposals "may require refinement or could be replaced by better ones."

The authors of many—but not all—of these comments seem to be taking objection with proposal 3 and thus declaring that Professor Scull's entire idea is morally bankrupt using adjectives such as "monstrous."

Wouldn't the whole of UC be better served by input from the affected faculty and staff rather than the current opaque process? These ideas, and many others, could be discussed and, with any luck, a better solution than the current uniform cuts could be implemented.

Stephen Checkoway
Ph.D. Student, Department of Computer Science and Engineering
UC San Diego

Greggor said...

Steve,

I suppose you are referring to my comment, for using the word "monstrous".

If you read the first paragraph as well as the last one, you will notice that I first commended Scull and his co-signers for having the drive to make such a proposal in the first place. The parts that recommend different courses of action are interesting and should be judged by individuals and groups that actually have the power to make such decisions.

I'm sure you understand that the reason I posted my comment is that part of the proposal attacks the values and reputation of my school. I am sure you would have jumped to the same task had an indignant professor written a proposal recommending your school for special funding cuts and possible (even the suggestion that this is possible is disturbing) shut down.

I make no other mention, negative or positive, of the other parts of the letter other than to state that I believe Scull may have prevented the entire piece from receiving the attention it deserves by scribbling such hasty and insulting statements alongside his other ideas.

Steve said...

I should not have quoted monstrous. I guess the word just stood out to me while reading the comments.

Stephen Checkoway

EliRabett said...

They seem to have pushed UCSB down the memory hole. Wonder why. (also Davis and Irvine, but UCSB is probably a lot better than UCSD IEHO)

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Anonymous said...

Hi! Nice topic, but will this really work?

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It is very sad that a university like the University of California is treated in this way and I don't think the economic crisis is as good an excuse. People regardless of the situations have found ingenious ways to overcome challenges....

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Anonymous said...

The chairmen's letter makes perfect sense. Times of budget cuts are actually an opportunity to get rid of failed pet projects of top management.

Let's take the idea a step further. How should California higher education be organized, rationallyt?

(1) Commentors are right that Irvine and Santa Barbara, for example, have some first-rate departments. That is anomalous, and it's hard to maintain departments that are so much better than their universities. So move them. Shift the faculty and facilities of Santa Barbara Physics to UCLA, for example. Similarly, move weak UCLA faculty to Santa Barbara.

(2) There is a place for first-rate state colleges, as opposed to universities. Santa Cruz would be a good example. So reduce salaries, increase teaching loads and extracurricular expectations for faculty there, and reduce research expectations, just as at Amherst College.

(3) In the same line, research universities shouldn't focus on undergraduate life. I bet there are frills like fancy gyms, dorms, and counselling offices at UCLA that could be cut. Move them to Santa Cruz.

(4) Remember that there is a UCState system too. Riverside ought to be moved into it.

(5) All this is the entire point of having a System instead of stand-alone colleges. There is no point in making each institution identical when they could specialize.

sonicsustain said...

To the last anonymous post about moving faculty and departments around:

Do you have any idea how much it would cost to reshuffle the entire UC system? Good luck getting that accomplished! You'd have to convince professors and administrator's to pull up stakes and sell homes, move, etc. Most of these expenses would have to be subsidized by the university system and state, since the faculty and whatnot are moving at the behest of school policy.

Furthermore, why downgrade UCR? We have one of the top philosophy departments in the country (better than most Ivy League depts), our entomology dept is ranked 2nd in the nation, bringing in ridiculous research money and patronage which benefits the entire UC, we house the citrus projects (every time you eat a navel orange, thank us), our humanities programs have been on a consistent rise in US News rankings, and we provide more opportunity for students of color than any other UC.
Be willing to make your own sacrifices before you tell others they have to.

Anonymous said...

Universities are not acting like academic institutions who is supposed to serves the community and builds the future, the mentality is becoming like greedy corporation who are only thinking about revenue. god help future generation students.

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