Free tuition would be a disaster for private colleges

When Hillary Clinton was struggling to win the Democrat party nomination against upstart Bernie Sanders, she co-opted his idea of free college tuition for all. To appease Sanders supporters, she allowed the idea to become part of the Democrat Party platform on which she is now running. If she really attempts to promote this idea, it will be a disaster for higher education in the country. Connecticut with its longstanding private school tradition will be especially hard hit.

UConn misrepresenting Faculty Row situation

As an alumnus of the UConn School of Business, a member of the Storrs community, Chair of the Mansfield Historic District Commission and local preservationist, I am writing to point out an issue that I believe UConn has misrepresented to the public. Further, I believe this is an opportunity to enhance alumni support.

Destroying UConn’s Faculty Row — a stupid move

My family lived along Gilbert Road when father first came to the Connecticut Agricultural College, a school limited to 500 students by the State Legislature. They moved to a farm just off campus where I grew up. I later worked in industry, in Europe, and began on the Physics faculty in 1971. I served on the University Senate for years, as well serving for years on the Research Foundation and the AAUP Executive Committee, including two years as president of the faculty union. I relate all this in the hope you will have some faith in my recommendation that you institute the Connecticut Environmental Policy Act process to investigate the University of Connecticut’s decision to destroy what remains of Faculty Row.

At Yale, a graduate student union vote at last

As a graduate teacher in Political Science at Yale, I study how activists, politicians, and philosophers in the world’s two largest democracies—India and the United States—have thought about democratic forms of government. I’m doing a PhD because I think that ideas matter: they move us to question the world we live in and imagine new ways of living together. It’s this spirit that I try to bring to the classrooms where I teach. In the coming days, I will get to participate in a new kind of democracy for me. I’ll get to vote to certify my union Local 33–UNITE HERE, the union of graduate teachers at Yale University.

Connecticut needs a new way to identify low-income students

Connecticut’s low-income students need and deserve an equitable school finance system that recognizes, and takes into account, the variety of challenges they may face that can impact their educational success. However, in order to distribute education resources fairly, Connecticut must transition to a new method of accurately identifying low-income students.

CT colleges must do more to stop campus sexual assault

The statistics of sexual assault on Connecticut’s college campuses are alarming. Almost every day, the news reports distressing issues of campus sexual assault. The numbers, which loudly speak for themselves, must urge the authorities do something. Strong policies should be developed and implemented in order to reduce, or better, eradicate sexual assault on Connecticut campuses.

Advice for CSCU students: manage your time, earn better grades

This fall approximately 28,674 students will be entering and or returning to our Connecticut State University System. For example, about 960 freshmen will be entering Eastern Connecticut State University the last week of August. These first time students will face new and exciting times. They will also encounter challenges, such as stress and anxiety. One of the main ways for them to reduce stress and anxiety is to manage their time effectively.

CT legislature undermining the future of its higher education system

Gov. Dannel Malloy announced last week that TheDream.US, the largest privately funded national scholarship program, will be dispersing hundreds of scholarships to undocumented immigrant students to attend ECSU. Bravo!

But while Gov. Malloy can applaud the disbursement of hundreds of thousands of dollars in private scholarships, he falls flat when it comes to supporting those very institutions poised to make the biggest impact on our state’s young people and their ability to succeed.

In saving UConn Torrington, is litigation necessary?

Almost since its inception in 1965, the main campus in Storrs, Connecticut, has sought to shut down the Torrington Campus of the University of Connecticut. Through the years unsupported and disparaging comments from those same faraway administrators would filter back that somehow the University branch system did not measure up to the academic standards of the main campus in Storrs. Then, suddenly in early March, the people in the Northwestern Connecticut were given a few weeks to react to the impending permanent closing of the Torrington Branch, forestalling any attempt to honestly and fairly discuss and dissent from this decision.

Connecticut higher ed should put more emphasis on faculty

The annual college student recruitment cycle is a spectacle. Colleges jockey for attention each spring by attempting to position themselves as the best: the most elite, the most recognized, with the best faculty, academic programs, and prolific intercollegiate athletic programs. The superlatives are effusive. Institutions spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on glossy marketing publications, pumping money and verbiage into social media, blogs, scheduling costly special events, passing out promotional items that showcase residence halls, dining commons, labs and clinics, and classrooms. And sometimes these glossy tomes mention the achievements of their faculty.

CSCU tuition increase no surprise, but is just as wrong

Connecticut State College and University System (ConnSCU) President Mark Ojakian’s decision to increase tuition at our community colleges and state universities is a slap in the face to people who are going to college on a budget. What’s worse is that he made the announcement in the middle of the system’s spring break. Ojakian knows that if the tuition increase is announced while class is in session, students would hear about it and action will be taken almost immediately by students and the faculty unions.