Friday, December 28, 2007

Another Univ. of Illinois military scholarship scandal figure gets a promotion


For almost a year I've been covering the University of Illinois military scholarships scandal.

A very brief summary: In early 2006, the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign's Chicago Executive MBA program announced that the were offering 110 full-ride scholarships to returning War on Terror veterans. Only about forty ended up receiving them, some vets were accepted, then had their admissions rescinded, got un-rescinded than re-rescinded.

Here are some earlier posts on the scandal:

Broken promises: How "jarheads" got shunted aside at the University of Illinois: A Marathon Pundit series
Marathon Pundit Exclusive: What happened behind the scenes of the University of Illinois veteran scholarship scandal
University of Illinois: "Hookers are Praised as Soldiers" –Marathon Pundit's Third Investigative Report
University of Illinois military scholarships scandal update
Exclusive: Van der Hooning, and Illinois vets, get a hearing at the Court of Claims
Scandal update: Lt. Gov. Quinn wants count of vets in Univ. of Ill. MBA program
Marathon Pundit exclusive: Lt. Gov. Quinn's letter to U of I president about military scholarship scandal

The dean of the College of Business while most of the events in the above posts were occurring was Dr. Avijit Ghosh, who was promoted to serve as vice president for technology and economic development for the three-campus University system.

Taking his place on an interim basis will be Larry DeBrock, who previously served as the associate dean of academic affairs and acting associate dean of the faculty in the College of Business.

Both appointments are subject to University of Illinois Board of Trustees approval. Both press releases are still on College of Business web site, so I think it's safe to assume that both men will be in place in their new jobs on January 1--which is of course the same day the U of I football team will play in the Rose Bowl.

As I've commented before, if you are a fan of the Missouri Tigers or the Florida Gators and you're angry that the Fighting Illini (who lost to Mizzou in September) are in the "Granddaddy of Them All," contact U of I president Joseph White about the jilted veterans at PresidentWhite@uillinois.edu.

As I noted a few months ago, I obtained a copy of an e-mail in which DeBrock referred to his colleagues as hookers.

DeBrock wrote:

So, if you are telling folks they need to drive 3.5 hours... teach 3 hours, and drive back 3.5 hours, they need (to be) compensated. And your 37.5 is nice compensation. But, high priced hookers are still hookers. But, BUT, B U T , if you bring in 70 students and the college nets 3.5 million, the hookers are praised as soldiers. They are cheered by smiling faculty waving UIUC flags lining the roadside while they ride back into town.

Robert van der Hooning, the former associate dean in charge of the veteran's program, told me DeBrock was one of the College of Business senior staff who derisively to the veterans at one time they were so eager to admit into the EMBA program as "jarheads."

Other university officials deny that, but I'm with van der Hooning on this one--as well as everything else on this story.

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