File spoon-archives/phillitcrit.archive/phillitcrit_1998/phillitcrit.9803, message 16


Date: Mon, 02 Mar 1998 13:00:41 -0500
Subject: Re: PLC: Restructuring


Howard,
	I don't have any first-hand experience in this (you should read the latest
Lingua Franca on departments that went into 'receivership').  I'm sure you can
make better arguments for the independence of CS than I can.  If they don't
succeed, you should try to get it associated with a department that has a good
track-record for getting people jobs; a department that relatively has good
standing it it's field.  Even with excellent programs and departments, the
absence of a track record can be a real obstacle.
	As far as the money argument, I find that the 'penny wise pound foolish'
argument is effective when one is faced with a cost-benefit analsis that measure
things as different as dollar savings to quality of program.

Ciao,
Reg

Howard Hastings wrote:
> 
> Last week, we here at George Mason University were suddenly hit with a
> demand to "restructure."  Our state governor dangled 20 million in funds
> before our university president, which he promised to fork over as soon
> as the university could demonstrate its commitment to fiscal
> responisbility and the High tech industry of Northern Virginia.  Suddenly,
> the deans provided virturally all programs and departments with with
> "guidelines proper downsizing.   All this  is proceeding swiftly,
> apparently to stay one jump ahead of public review.
> 
> The case of our cultural studies program is particularly acute.  The dean
> of the college of arts and sciences wants to eliminate the position of
> CS director and secretary, and house the program with an individual dept.
> 
> A group of us CS students will be meeting with him in about two weeks
> to discuss this problem, and I am pretty sure that he is going to tell us
> that housing a program within a department will not really restrict the
> program's autonomy or its commitment to interdisciplinarity.  Still, this
> worries me.
> 
> And it brings me now to my question--have any of you out there in
> Phillitcritland any knowledge of similar programs which have been forced
> to undergo a similar restructuring and how they have fared?  I realize
> that Departmental configurations and university politcs are not the same
> everywhere, so our case may differ from many others.  Nevertheless, I
> would  appreciate hearing from anyone with experience in these matters, on
> or off list.
> 
> hh
> 
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