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Dudley ’89 Trustee at MCLA

Professor Will Dudley ’89 is now a trustee at MCLA, the Massachusetts College of the Liberal Arts, the former North Adams State.

What should he do?

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Urquhart ’89 on University Funding

How should US states organize their higher education systems?

About a decade ago, the late Kermit Hall, then president of Utah State University, complained to lawmakers that the Legislature’s system of funding higher education encouraged schools to grow — regardless of what makes sense for the state and students.

But members of the state Board of Regents are proposing to change what many see as a flawed model for distributing tax dollars to Utah’s eight public colleges and universities, replacing the enrollment-growth model with one that recognizes each school’s mission and the contribution it makes.

Such a system would ensure stable-enrollment schools like Southern Utah University and the University of Utah get a fair cut once the Legislature has more tax revenue to invest in education.

“If we are a system of higher education as opposed to a compilation of institutions, then the institutions should do different things,” said Sen. Stephen Urquhart, R-St. George. And that means funding based on factors other than bodies on campus. The Washington County Republican, whose district includes high-growth Dixie State College, intends to sponsor legislation to change the formula. Urquhart has the support of Regents, who convened a task force last spring to explore the role of mission in an overhauled funding model.

During the recession, enrollment at Dixie, Utah Valley and Weber State universities and Salt Lake Community College exploded. Under the current model, they could monopolize new appropriations, leaving the state’s research flagship and other selective-admission schools out in the cold.

“Southern Utah University is a jewel in our system. It’s trying to be our stand-alone liberal arts institution. It’s tough to make that move under the way we currently fund our institutions,” said Urquhart, a graduate of Williams College in rural Massachusetts. “[SUU] is not going to have huge growth like here at Dixie and UVU. In that case, we need to fund excellence.”

If I were a Utah tax payer, I would hate to have my money spent subsidizing a new liberal arts college.

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Walk the Perimeter

Cathy Paper ’89:

When do you really stop and pause and take a look at what’s around you in your life and what’s important to you? Some people do it in church or temple, others do it when they transition jobs- by choice or by force, others reflect deeply when they have a child, and a few take inventory with great, discplined regularity in annual goals and weekly status touchbases.

I am not quite so organized and find that one of the best ways to help my clients grab hold of what’s going on in their life is to take a look at the monthly schedule. Where is your time going? What are your big goals? What do you want to accomplish? Who are you spending your time with? What needs to change and rearrange to get more impact or improvement from your effort?

These are just a few questions you can ask yourself to take stock of where you are spending your energy and the progress you are making towards your goals. While many people call this exercise the basics of time management, I think of it more like walking the perimeter of my garden. When I employ this gardening strategy, I often don’t start by walking around, I just dive in with a section that needs to be weeded or tended to, and then I move on to the next segment. Soon, I’ve done a zoom in on the back beds, the front beds and the alley flowers. Thus, I’ve walked the perimeter. I’ve made a list of what can be improved on. I’ve noticed what is working. I’ve seen what needs to change and I’ve gotten connected to what really matters: things are growing and changing and it’s beautiful just the way it is in that very moment. Go get dirty and take stock of what you want to create.

Sound advice. But when I first read the title of Cathy’s post, I thought of a Marine lieutenant walking the perimeter of his unit’s position. Is that a better or worse analogy?

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ShockDoctor

From Cathy Paper ’89:

Brainstorming requires all types of people at the table. Whether you are coming up with a new name, a new company, a new approach or a new product. I have always found it energizing to collaborate with others to create something new and innovative.

My daughter needed a new mouthguard. My husband took her to buy one and she picked out a new ShockDoctor in pink. He happened to tell her that her mom, that’s me, had named the product. She wasn’t sure what to make of that. It was in a big store and had a whole wall of products with that same name, ShockDoctor. Not that she doesn’t think I’m super smart and all, but I think it was a lot to comprehend since I’m her mom.

Indeed. My wife, Cathy’s classmate, goes through a similar experience with our daughters whenever one of her patients comes up to her in public to discuss some issue.

We ought to add Cathy’s blog to Eph Planet.

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Links

Time to clean out my e-mail box of EphBlog material

1) Todd Pelkey ‘89 pointed out (two years ago!) this article about Michael Govan at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

2) From the Purple Bull mailing list:

Skip, a purple bull alum, just emailed me to let you guys know that Lehman will be here tomorrow at the Job Fair. He said:

“It will probably be most helpful for people looking at next year (current sophomores applying for internships next year and current juniors applying for full time next year).”

So, I encourage you all to check it out. Will be a good opportunity to get to know the Lehman folks, which is important since we’re not a core school for Lehman any more.

No worries on that front!

3) John Berger ’89 founded and runs (with his wife) The Emancipation Network: Fighting Human Trafficking and Slavery with Empowerment. Read about them here. Someone should invite him to give a talk at Williams.

Amity Shlaes on Bloomberg in December.

Youth is what the climate change conference in Copenhagen is supposed to be all about.

The advertising campaign for the United Nations Climate Change Conference on global warming that opens this week is even called “Hopenhagen,” to suggest that young people need to push their governments to save the Kyoto Treaty if they are going to prevent environmental apocalypse.

One reason that Hopenhagen has caught on is that youth fashion these days is as green as it gets. Copenhagen, thrift and handbags made of recycled seatbelts all go together in the under-30 mind. At Williams College in Massachusetts, some 50 students and faculty started a hunger strike to show their support for a climate-change agreement.

7) Most bizarre article featuring an Eph.

8) (d)avid points out this article (pdf): “Why do Institutions of Higher Education Reward Research While Selling Education?”

9) A letter from John Calhoun ’62:

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Brzezinski ’89 on Colbert

Mika Brzezinski ’89 on The Colbert Report.

The Colbert Report Mon – Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Mika Brzezinski
www.colbertnation.com
Colbert Report Full Episodes Political Humor Economy

Thanks to nuts for the link.

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Morris ’89 on Trial

Saddest Eph story of 2010? Will Morris ’89 on trial for fraud.

Carolyn Louper-Morris and her son William Morris are set to go on trial Friday in federal court in Minneapolis on charges that they conspired to defraud customers, the state of Minnesota, and a big retailer out of more than $3 million.

The federal allegations say the pair set up and ran a company, CyberStudy 101, that fraudulently promised a Web-based tutorial service it never delivered, and illegally received state tax credits as payment, all the while defrauding Kmart Corp. of computers it gave to customers. Louper-Morris and Morris allegedly used the money to buy a house, luxury cars, a fur coat and jewelry.

Louper-Morris and Morris, of Minneapolis, may be no different from other defendants who started off with an innovative idea, lofty goals and noble intentions before running afoul of the law. They have rebuffed news media inquiries and waited until the eve of their trial to speak about their now-defunct business.

I lived with Will in Carter House for two years. You could not ask for a nicer, funnier or more sensible housemate.

Morris, 42, graduated from Williams College, a prestigious school in the Berkshires of western Massachusetts. Later he earned a degree from the University of Minnesota Law School and interned at Best & Flanagan law firm in Minneapolis, which later hired him.

Now he works part time in a liquor store “to make ends meet,” Morris says. The business failure forced him into bankruptcy, which along with legal troubles have kept him from practicing law, he said.

What a tragic waste of real talent.

It is interesting to compare and contrast Will’s fate with that of Mike Swensen ’89, who made a fortune shorting the same housing securities that his firm, Goldman Sachs, was selling to its clients. Were Morris’s actions really more morally/ethically/legally suspect than Swensen’s? Reasonable Ephs may differ. Will an ambitious DA ever go after Swensen? Not in a million campaign contributions.

Next week is Claiming Williams. What do you think the biggest difference between Morris and Swensen is when it comes to how the criminal justice system treats them?

Other article selections below the break.
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