To the editor:
In his opinion column on April 8, Professor Hoeflich expressed shock over the discovery that Chancellor Hemenway has been transferring university funds to KU Athletics to pay for a faculty discount on tickets. He called such a transfer “evidence of a total lack of perspective and priorities,” and expressed his concern that the chancellor and others under his control are forgetting that they work for the people of the state of Kansas.
I would like to invite Hoeflich to look into another example of “a total lack of perspective and priorities” on the part of the chancellor, namely his putting the interests of the Chinese government above those of KU by continuing to provide KU funding for the Chinese government’s Confucius Institute at the Edwards Campus, while on Mount Oread he is cutting positions and eliminating activities.
Back in February, KU canceled this year’s Wheat State Tour for new faculty because it could not find $10,000 in state funds and was not going to receive $17,000 from the KU Endowment. How many Wheat State Tours could be conducted with the hundreds of thousands of Kansas taxpayer dollars that Hemenway allocates every year to support the global Confucius Institute public relations program?
I hope that Hoeflich will look into this issue and write about it in a future column. I’m sure that there are many people besides me who would like to know why the chancellor’s commitment to serving his Chinese government partner appears to be greater than his commitment to the people of Kansas.