Buckle up, everybody.

Well, here we go.  The univer$ity of iowa has a new pre$ident.

This seems an apt followup to my last post, and it’s an easy one to write because there’s not much to say. That’s mainly because this is one of those wind-’em-up topics that is likely to launch hundreds of thousands of words into the blogosphere  over the next few days.

I suppose we can look at the bright side for holiday travel (yeah, right), which is that our governor won’t be advocating for a wall to be built between Iowa and Wisconsin.

And at least they’re not paying Pre$ident Harreld as much as the football and basketball coaches, because that would probably make people angry.

2 thoughts on “Buckle up, everybody.

  1. Thanks for sharing! So continues the commodification of education and the economization of life (universities need to operate like businesses, be more efficient, if it’s not economically productive it’s not worthwhile, …)


  2. Of course, there’s a long history of folks from government and business — although mostly from more public-service oriented backgrounds, and usually with more acceptable academic credentials — being named president or chancellor of a university. Given that much of the job is about fundraising and being the public face of the university, that makes some sense.

    But there’s still a very large component of university leadership that requires both day-to-day administration of university activities and the long-term vision needed to maintain the ideals of the university. That’s where the faculty of Iowa really appeared to be at odds with this hire, and by such a wide margin that this decision has red flags all over it from the outset.

    And in any event, it’s clear that this is the kind of decision that we’ll see more frequently in the near future — the politically partisan body making choices that traditionally have very strong, if not final, input by faculty. This looks like a major erosion of faculty governance power in Iowa, and that bodes ill for universities everywhere, but especially next door in Wisconsin.


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