Archive for 16 January 2010

Irish students in lucky escape day before disaster hit

Posted in Life with tags on 16 January 2010 by Steve

“A group of UCD students have spoken of their narrow escape after they missed the Haiti earthquake by just one day. The young team of 12 volunteers flew out of Port-au-Prince and touched down in Dublin airport on Monday morning – just hours before the devastating 7.0 magnitude quake struck the Caribbean island …” (more)

[Aoife Anderson, Herald, 16 January]

Former poet laureate defends merits of creative writing courses

Posted in teaching with tags , on 16 January 2010 by Steve

“Sir Andrew Motion has hit out at critics of creative writing courses and those who claim that students cannot be taught to become authors. The former Poet Laureate said that no one criticised musicians or actors for honing their talents and the same should be true for professional writers. More than 50 universities now offer MAs in creative writing, and there are hundreds of other diplomas and postgraduate courses that give hope and training to would-be authors …” (more)

[Nicola Woolcock, Times, 16 January]

Nation’s Largest Labor Union Group Creates Online Degree Program

Posted in teaching with tags on 16 January 2010 by Steve

“A new distance-learning program says it is the first accredited, degree-granting, online college open only to union members. The new program, called the College for Working Families, is a joint venture between the A.F.L.-C.I.O., the National Labor College, and the Penn Foster Education Group (now owned by the Princeton Review) …” (more)

[Jill Laster, Chronicle of Higher Education, 15 January]

Higher education: predicting the apocalypse

Posted in Governance and administration with tags , on 16 January 2010 by Steve

“In many developed countries, though not all, higher education is currently experiencing significant cuts in public spending. In Ireland we have seen major reductions in funding over the past two years, and more is expected. Universities have been warning, though on the whole in a restrained fashion, that these cuts may seriously compromise our international standing …” (more)

[Ferdinand von Prondzynski, University Blog, 16 January]

My style

Posted in Life with tags on 16 January 2010 by Steve

Fashion: Virginia Teehan, Director of cultural projects and humanities research at University College, Cork. Describe what you’re wearing: I bought the black Zapa dress in Murphy’s boutique in Kilkenny about eight or nine years ago. The green crushed silk jacket is from Irish Handcrafts in Limerick …” (more)

[Deirdre McQuillan, Irish Times, 16 January]

Chris Patten prepares to take on Peter Mandelson over universities

Posted in Governance and administration with tags on 16 January 2010 by Steve

“…The higher education system will, in his view, have to change dramatically to cope with the new financial reality. “We are trying to provide the same universities for everyone as the number of students increase. It’s all about equality of esteem, all universities have to do the same thing. That’s preposterous, insane. At the same time we want to defend our competitive research base — well, we can’t do both. The biggest worry is that we don’t change the sector, we just squeeze everything …” (more)

[Rachel Sylvester and Alice Thomson, Times, 16 January]

Is anything happening at QS?

Posted in Governance and administration with tags on 16 January 2010 by Steve

“Although there has been a lot of activity, so far mainly rhetorical, at Times Higher Education and Thomson Reuters about their forthcoming rankings, nothing has been heard from QS apart from an advert for a manager of a university ranking for Latin America and Iberia …” (more)

[Richard Holmes, University Ranking Watch, 16 January]