By this point many people in the Mason community will know that we have decided to close the Mason operation in Ras al-Khaimah as of the end of this semester. Negotiations with our funding partners in RAK broke down both over budget levels for the current year and over changes our partners sought in reporting […]
Many of the faculty doubtless saw the recent (Feb. 18) New York Times article on student expectations and grades. Citing faculty at many institutions, including the University of Maryland, the notion is that many students import from their K-12 experience a sense that any significant effort in class should be rewarded with an A. The […]
One of the most intriguing themes emerging from this year's legislative session, obviously aside from the budget itself, involves the surprisingly strong push from various quarters to "do something" about out of state students in Commonwealth colleges and universities. Several measures in the House propose a 30% cap, presumably allowing places above the cap some time to adjust; one, which would hit Mason very directly, calls simply for an out-of-state percentage in next fall's freshman class no higher than that of 2008. The Senate, avoiding caps, proposes tripling the current per-credit capital fee for out of state students (from $2. to $6), which would cost Mason roughly $600,000.
Several provosts I’ve met, and other observers, have commented on what an unpleasant job it is. On the whole I don’t find it so — the chance for constructive influence, the range of topics and issues is recurrently, if not consistently, exciting. Handling inclement weather, however, invariably if briefly drives me to the pessimist camp. […]