Martin Snyder

State of the Profession: Tapas, Anyone?

For the past thirty years or more, the language of management and business has increasingly dominated the discussion of higher education. Colleges and universities have certainly not been the only institutions affected by the growth of biz-speak and biz-think. “Contributing to economic growth” has become the assumed goal of most of our social, cultural, and intellectual activities.

Melancholy in the Academy

It’s hardly news to anyone that higher education is under siege. That’s painfully clear. Self-serving politicians, self-righteous ideologues, and self-delusional bean counters are all demanding their pounds of flesh from our increasingly emaciated institutions. It’s hard not to be discouraged. Moreover, the Lilliputian stature of our leaders both in government and on our campuses does little to inspire confidence or dispel gloom. As the writer and translator Lin Yutang once wrote, “When small men begin to cast big shadows, it means that the sun is about to set.”

State of the Profession: An Amethyst Remembrance—Almost

The recent turmoil at the University of Virginia surrounding the forced resignation of President Teresa Sullivan sent shock waves throughout the academy. Reverberations continue. Regardless of the largely happy outcome of events, the Association has launched an investigation into what went wrong. Though some problems seem glaringly obvious, the investigating committee is taking a close and objective look at UVA’s procedures and is considering whether they were adequate and whether procedures already in place were actually followed.

State of the Profession: Much Ado about MOOCs

In case you haven’t noticed, massive open online courses (MOOCs) are all the rage these days, at least in the press. “Campus Tsunami,” “Instruction for Masses Knocks Down Campus Walls,” and “College May Never Be the Same” are but a few of the sensational headlines cropping up in the popular and educational press. Is all the hype justified?

AAUP's Martin Snyder Speaks on Newseum Panel

On Saturday, August 10, the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication sponsored a panel on academic freedom and the First Amendment. AAUP senior associate general secretary Martin Snyder was a panelist at the event, which was held at the Newseum in Washington, DC.

America’s Pastime

We Americans are an argumentative lot. There’s nothing we enjoy more than a good debate, especially if the “debate” actually consists of little more than the vociferous expression of contrary opinions with little supporting evidence. Radio and television careers are made of such stuff! Arguing about religion, particularly about religion and science, seems to hold perennial fascination for our compatriots. It’s my candidate for America’s favorite pastime.

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