Please, can we fire all the Deans and the college administrators now?
This is about the Chancellor's Office at the University of Maine, which our right wing governor, if he had any sense -- he probably thinks the university is a monolith -- should gut, returning half the savings to the students as a tuition decrease, and the other half to the professors to do teaching and research. Of course he won't. Bangor Daily News, quoting Nigel Stevens, a 2010 USM alum:
University of Southern Maine mentioned in “We are Creating Walmarts of Higher Education”
One of the most frustrating and confusing things about all this is the fact that it is not even as simple as “universities cutting programs in order to graduate more students for less money.” While that would be a terrible fate for ostensibly public education, it at least logically follows the austerity narrative. Austerity is never really about deficits and budget shortfalls though. It always rears its ugly head as the objective, natural, and unavoidable solution to a political power struggle. This means that the numbers are never really the issue, but rather which metric to impose to get the desired results.
Classic neoliberal tactic!
One of the things that was so crazy about the attempt to cut German Studies was that, according to an independent audit, the program actually made money for the university (unlike many of the still worthwhile, but capital intensive STEM programs). After all there is low overhead for popular humanities programs, so one could easily imagine a strategy that actually involves investing in the humanities. That is, if graduating more students for less money were really the end game. Truth be told though, what’s going on here is pretty clear: local bio-capitalists, aging bureaucrats, and bankers want their publicly-subsidized “pipeline of human capital” and they couldn’t really give less of a shit about anything else. The Board of Trustees doesn’t care about your education, they don’t care about the taxes you pay, they don’t care about your student debt, they don’t even care about the long-term financial health of the university; all they seem to care about is their dystopic, job training scheme.
Yep. For jobs they will then try to make go away at the first opportunity because freedom.