There’s a press release (screenshot here) contending that UW-Whitewater contributes a large sum – hundreds of millions – to the Wisconsin economy. The release is written by Assistant Vice Chancellor Sara Kuhl.
Kuhl begins the release touting the power and influence of the university by misspelling a common English word (emphasis added):
UW-Whitewater, one of the UW System’s premiere universities…
The release should read premier (among the first rank) not premiere (the first showing of a movie or play). This is not the first time UW-Whitewater’s leadership has made this mistake.
The claim of vast wealth produced should, if even partly true, allow Kuhl’s office to buy a dictionary, and offer her and others the chance to open its pages now and again.
Truly, however, Kuhl’s deficiencies of ordinary usage are the least of concerns.
This recent study touting value doesn’t address the many of the highest values.
Instead, this beautiful campus faces problems more costly than any value supposedly generated: basic values of learning and safety are under stress at this institution – a self-promoting administration, flacking sham studies, while faculty are shunted aside, hunger is present on campus, and a longstanding, ongoing problem of sexual assault on and off campus continues.
What these recent administrations have brought cannot compensate adequately for what what they’ve taken.
Well said. This media release is so disconnected from many lives on campus it’s a self-parody.
This announcement is funny and sad at the same time. Yes, the funny part is that an academic institution screws up the first line of the grand announcement. The sad part really hits the mark, however. They announce all this money generated but there are serious problems students or faculty face that are happening despite that money.
The whole point is to say “look at what we do for you”.there was a story in the DU about this economic study that quoted the usual suspects telling the rest of us how grateful we should be. That kind of quote mattered back in the day but is worthless now.That video about the rural health crisis is more realistic about life than the study.
The defense of a college education – if it is to be a compelling defense – rests on more than supposed economic multipliers, sham studies to attract students, and a gaudy university website littered with vulgar enticements to attend one college or another. America’s advanced university system, stretching from ocean to ocean, and developed over three centuries, should be receive more than an infomercial.
There’s no love of learning in cheap advertisements and debased standards to draw a few people in. A man who tells someone that enrollment is his highest priority tells only that he doesn’t care for the means to enrollment, only its ends. Shifting from one demographic to another (a more diverse one) is a commendable pursuit wrongly debased by speaking to that new population as though a college education were a visit a peddler’s village.
Some of those in that DU article quoting ‘usual suspects’ is have shown a weak grasp of learning’s deeper meanings but plentiful support education-as-a-moneymaker and for those politicians who’ve been critics of university life.
I’ve no objection with a university education, needless to say. On the contrary, it’s a worthy pursuit – and far worthier than the efforts of those who sell it – crudely and sometimes dishonestly – as though it were soap.