Archive for 21 February 2009

Reintroduction of third level fees will be fought not just by students

Posted in Fees and access with tags , , , , on 21 February 2009 by Steve

“The union of Students of Ireland (USI) held a briefing session in Dublin this week outlining the issues that they want addressed to ensure that Education continues to remain accessible as we face into a turbulent financial era. Obviously the issue of 3rd levels fees was raised with USI opposed to their reintroduction rather they believe that it should be funded through the taxation system. The Minster is due to bring forward his proposals in April this year and he appears to be championing a case to bring back 3rd level fees. Fine Gael are also looking at the issue and Brian Hayes, our Education spokesman, is due to produce a Green Paper on the matter outlining our alternative so there will be plenty of debate on the issue. I think that there must be a focus on our 3rd level institutions and we must ensure that we have quality and measured outcomes for students …” (more)

[Deirdre Clune TD, 20 February]

Eat your heart out

Posted in Life with tags , on 21 February 2009 by Steve

“Earlier this week there was a review of student dining at one of Ireland’s universities (not DCU). On the whole the reviewer was not complimentary, either about the quality or the price of the food on offer. For myself, I remember very little about the quality and quantity of food I ate as a student; somehow the food wasn’t as important as other things, including drink. However, what I do remember is that food, or catering, were issues which once they were raised were guaranteed to produce heated argument, and with a bit of luck militant confrontation with the university authorities. And some of the causes were odd …” (more)

[Ferdinand von Prondzynski, University Blog, 21 February]

Knowledge for knowledge’s sake?

Posted in teaching with tags on 21 February 2009 by Steve

“… When I had my interview for my beloved university, I was asked by my interviewer why he as a taxpayer should subsidise my degree, when it’s of no use to him. Classicists don’t build bridges, or do surgery, or sue people. In fact, he asked me what made Classics a valid subject when I dismissed stupid degrees like David Beckham studies and the like. I made a really stupid answer which I won’t repeat here, but I still cannot think of a totally satisfying answer to that kind of utilitarianism. It’s a fact I come up against whenever I tell people I do Classics – ‘Oh really? And what can you do with that?’ I also notice that my friends who do History and English never get asked that …” (more)

[Echoes of Narcissus, 20 February]