Your daily dose of news, notes and links from around Kansas University.
• I’m looking at student fees this week, with a particular emphasis on a proposed change in how Student Senate funds organizations like GaDuGi SafeCenter, Headquarters Counseling Center and the like.
It’s an interesting conversation, and as this article in the University Daily Kansan points out, student leaders are looking for new ways to fund those groups, while ensuring that they continue to receive funds.
But aside from that, here's one more thing I noted from the Kansan’s article. The committee has proposed reducing the women’s and non-revenue intercollegiate sports fee from $40 to $25.
The last time the senate went through all this fee wrangling two years ago, it tried to lower the fee, but backed off out of fears that then-Chancellor Robert Hemenway would veto the reduction.
Hemenway said at the time that he was concerned about backing away from funds that supported Title IX compliance. It’s one of the few (if not the only) sources of revenue that flows from the university to athletics.
UPDATE: I got a tip this morning explaining that the fee reduction was part of the payments being retired on the rowing team's new boathouse. It was scheduled to happen, and wasn't the same issue as two years ago, so don't expect any controversy this year.
All of these proposed changes still must be approved by the full student senate before becoming official, and can obviously be subject to a veto from a higher authority.
And, for the super-interested (or super-bored), here’s a complete breakdown of all of KU’s tuition and fees.
• I learned something interesting about KU from reading this article in the Iowa City Press Citizen.
KU and the rest of the six regents universities have a 4 percent cap on the number of faculty that can be on sabbaticals at once.
It’s regents policy, but not state law.
The reporter interviewed Barbara Phipps, KU’s faculty senate president, and I learned that a task force is examining whether to propose loosening or eliminating the cap.
Iowa’s 3 percent cap on extended paid time away from teaching, which is mandated by law, will sunset in 2012, the article said, adding that Iowa is one of the few states that mandates such a cap.
Here’s a list of all of KU’s sabbaticals approved for the 2010-11 academic year.
The projects are quite varied. They include everything from “archival research exploring how the pervasive presence of the Catholic Church in Spanish cinema during Franco's dictatorship is tied to the effort to use culture as a vehicle to sanction the regime's political project” to “[studying] the Taubman method for preventing hand and arm injuries and produce a series of DVDs that can be shared with pianists in need of injury prevention, knowledge and training.”
The process is competitive, and not all projects are approved.
Here’s another good look at the topic from 2004.
• I’ve heard that the KU musicians’ trip to Eutin, Germany, earlier this year was a success. Plans are in the works to bring a delegation back to the city in the summer.
Organizers from Eutin’s summer music festival’s Board of Directors are scheduled to visit the KU School of Music in April.
And in July, students from KU’s symphony orchestra and opera students from the spring 2011 production of Hansel und Gretel will be traveling to Eutin to present seven performances of the opera and other works.
Seven representatives of KU, including Music Dean Robert Walzel, performed in the city in January.
I’ll be gathering more information on this later this week.
• I saw that a KU news release promoting a free golf clinic on campus mentioned that it would help golfers “prevent injury.” They must know about my golf game, which usually hurts me both physically and mentally. Send me golf tips or KU tips or any tips, really, at firstname.lastname@example.org.