Heard on the Hill

Greetings from Antarctica

Ben Unglesbee

As you might have noticed from [a Journal-World story today][1], the Center for Remote Sensing of Ice Sheets (aka CReSIS) has been busy. As it does most years, CReSIS has sent out multiple teams to the Arctic and Antarctic regions to collect data on ice formations that will hopefully lead ...

For the children, please take your finals this week

Ben Unglesbee

For those of you on the hill in the throes of Finals Week at Kansas University, take heart. There is a social media revolution afoot to end finals altogether. Well, that's not entirely accurate. The revolution is trying to end just one final, in one class, at one particular university. ...

Working on a 'potentially catastrophic' problem for small-town businesses

Ben Unglesbee

Over the weekend we ran a story about [KU's outreach efforts][1] in the central and western parts of the state. Top administrators have been crisscrossing Kansas and touting KU research and programs that have an impact on rural communities. One of those programs, developed in 2012 and currently growing, is ...

The long and tangled journey of post-tenure review at KU

Ben Unglesbee

It took two proposals, four handouts (printed on four different colors of paper) and nearly two hours for the Kansas University Faculty Senate to [approve a post tenure policy yesterday][1]. But of course it took far more than that. The process of crafting a policy that would allow academic departments ...

Student debt on the rise

Ben Unglesbee

In Kansas and across the country student debt is on the rise, though the debt burdens of Kansas students are, as you might expect, smaller. A [new report][1] from the Institute for College Access and Success, a nonprofit focused on college affordability, shows more than 70 percent of college seniors ...

Humanities crises therapy

Ben Unglesbee

Once again the humanities are on our minds here at Heard on the Hill. First, a mea culpa: A few weeks ago in a Journal-World [article about the role of the humanities][1] and liberal arts at Kansas University, we referenced a decrease of 210 undergraduate students enrolled in Kansas University’s ...

A moody outlook for higher education industry

Ben Unglesbee

Higher education is education, but it's also an industry in this country. As evidence of that I would point to the fact that Moody's Investor's Service issues market outlooks for higher education. (Perhaps you remember Moody's from the run-up to the financial crisis, when it and other [investment ratings agencies ...

Post-tenure review 2.0

Ben Unglesbee

Some weeks ago we checked in on the ongoing construction of Kansas University's [post-tenure review policy][1]. After open forums around campus for faculty to weigh in, plus lengthy discussions in the Faculty Senate, the committee tasked with writing a policy has produced [a new draft][2] for faculty members and their ...

Chancellor Gray-Little on JFK's assassination

Ben Unglesbee

Last week the [Journal-World did a retrospective][1] on what folks around the community remembered about the assassination of John F. Kennedy in Dallas 50 years ago. Not along ago I had the chance to chat with Kansas University Chancellor Bernadette Gray-Little, and I asked her what she remembered about that ...

Get your dose of Depression-era economics tonight on the hill

Ben Unglesbee

Tonight at [7 in the Spencer Art Museum][1], [Alexander Field][2], a professor of economics at Santa Clara University in California, will give a talk on the Great Depression and economic growth. Field is the author of ["A Great Leap Forward,][3]" a book that makes the case that technological progress during ...

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