Poor, Poor Carol

Oct 23 2014

"The fake classes thrived for so long because it was hard for people to fathom that they could even exist." Carol Folt, UNC Chapel Hill Chancellor.

"Nobody goes there anymore. It's too crowded." Yoggi Berra, Professor of Philosophy.

Folt UNC Report.jpg

Now I get it. While more than 3,000 UNC students took "paper classes" that never met and required only one term-end paper, which was cursorily awarded an A or B grade by an administrator (as needed for GPA purposes) in order that, for the most part, money sport athletes could maintain their eligibility, Carol believes that nobody realized what was happening.

An NCAA invesrtigation, re-opened this past June, is still ongoing.

In light of Jim Kim's current problems, people must be wondering just what kind of management farm team Dartmouth is running.

Addendum: Former federal prosecutor and FBI counsel Kenneth Wainstein's full report is here, and the Chronicle of Higher Education has devoted most of today's issue to the last twenty years' academic corruption at UNC. The story was reported on by the NYT, the Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg, ESPN, the New York Post, Sports Illustrated, USA Today, the Raleigh News & Observer, and pretty much everyone else.

How sad that a school gets such a drubbing in the press.

Addendum: Lest anyone harbor any doubts about the egregiousness of the fraud perpetrated by UNC, the below note by the estimable Raleigh's News & Observer details how grades were awarded

Crowder admitted she did not read the papers beyond the openings and conclusions. Students quickly learned they could get away with submitting papers that had "fluff" in the middle so long as the openings and conclusions were original. The investigation found that of 150 papers written by students, well over half contained plagiarized passages that accounted for at least 25 percent of each paper's content.

Wainstein's investigation also found two other methods for placing students - predominantly athletes - into paper classes. At least five classes actually met, but Crowder and Nyang'oro allowed some students to take the class as a paper class. In a "handful" of other cases, Crowder added student athletes, who would turn in a paper to her, to grade rolls without a professor's knowledge.

Addendum: The fraudulent events under discussion occurred prior to Folt's arrival at Carolina, but we can see that her response is typical of methods used at Dartmouth:

After the meeting, Chancellor Carol Folt will spend much of the day reaching out to the university community...

Aiding her is a high-powered public relations firm, Edelman, a Washington, D.C., group that has at least 14 people working to getting out the university's message.

Spokesman Joel Curran said the firm began helping the university improve its communications in May. He couldn't immediately say how much they are being paid.

The College employed the Edelman firm during the various petition Trustee races are few years ago.

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No HPo APC's

Oct 23 2014

The Hanover Police has not purchased armored personnel carriers, nor anything else for that matter, from the Department of Defense's surplus weapons disposal program. However the department has declined to reveal whether it is in possession of any heavy weapons:

HPo DoD.jpg

According to its internal capital expenditures budget, the department does require its officers when on patrol to wear soft body armor, which it replaces every five years, and every decade the Town replaces the semi-automatic pistols that officers carry.

Addendum: Dartmouth Safety & Security is not a sworn police force; it is akin to a private security service. As such, its officers have no power of arrest beyond that of ordinary citizens, and they may not carry weapons.

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Kim Crashing and Burning

Oct 22 2014

The other day we commented on the now-famous yellow flyers that adorn the halls of the World Bank. Staffers there, for some mysterious reason, don't think that Jim Kim is the Messiah. Now Business Insider notes that more yellow sheets have appeared, and the BI piece add some interesting quotes from WB staffers:

The Bank's current president is increasingly unpopular at the institution, with many staff deeply dissatisfied with his tenure so far.

"There's a culture of fear with Kim because the perception is that you get fired if you disagree with him," one World Bank staff member told Business Insider. "I think the sense is that he wasn't qualified for the job, a bit superficial, narcissistic, and promises a lot but delivers little on implementation."

Staff have been incensed at President Kim's reform process, which they claim has been needlessly opaque, unfocused, and lacking in substance. They say President Kim has fired several well-respected managers, curtailed employee benefits, and talks of new budget cuts, all while wasting money on external consultants and bonuses for senior staff...

One former staff member told Business Insider that while Kim initially raised expectations over much needed reform to red tape and aging technology, he has failed to follow through in any substantive way.

"The entire reform effort by President Kim should be taught in business schools as a case study in how to poorly manage institutional reform," the former employee said. "It has resulted in complete chaos and created a culture of fear, uncertainty, and distrust."

Is Jim Kim "superficial, narcissistic, and promises a lot but delivers little on implementation"?

Yes. Absolutely. We saw those characteristics (and a few more unsavory ones) in Hanover from 2009 to 2012.

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