Showing posts with label College. Show all posts
Showing posts with label College. Show all posts

Friday, November 30, 2007

Marathon Pundit exclusive: Quinn's letter to U of I president about military scholarship scandal

The below letter has been authorized as authentic. Thanks to Marathon Pundit commenter R. Gerritt for submitting it last night under my blog comments section.

Thank you R. Gerritt, and thank you Lieutnenant Governor Quinn.

November 20, 2007

Dr. B. Joseph White
President, University of Illinois
364 Henry Administration Building, MC-346 506 S. Wright St
Urbana, Illinois 61801

Dear President White:

I am writing to express my continuing concern about the University of Illinois' Executive MBA program's treatment of our veterans.

On March 3, 2006, I joined Robert van der Hooning, then Assistant Dean for Professional and Executive Education at the University's College of Business, at a University of Illinois-sponsored luncheon to promote the College of Business' commitment to award free tuition for its Executive MBA Program to Illinois servicemembers who have served in the Global War on Terror. At that time, the University pledged to provide up to 110 full academic scholarships to the 20-month Executive MBA Program, including tuition, mandatory fees, books, meals, and lodging.

Since that promising beginning, I have been deeply disappointed by the University of Illinois' failure to fulfill its promise to our veterans. Instead of honoring our pledge to our veterans, the University ofIllinois has cut back on its promise.

I am writing this letter to formally request a full listing of all veterans who have thus far received the tuition waiver from the College of Business, along with a list of all veterans who have applied for an been denied admission and total enrollment numbers for the Executive MBA program over the last two years. I expect the University of Illinois to make good on its promise and set an example of ethical behavior for all of its students.

I appreciate your prompt attention to this matter.

Sincerely,

Pat Quinn Lt. Governor

cc: Dr. Richard Herman, Chancellor, UIUC
Members, University of Illinois Board of Trustees

Related Marathon Pundit posts:

Related posts:

Scandal update: Lt. Gov. Quinn wants count of vets in Univ. of Ill. MBA program

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

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Monday, June 11, 2007

Ill. legislature passes College Campus Press Act

The Illinois State Legislature is in an overtime session, trying to pass a budget that now 2/3 of the legislature has to agree on.

On a positive note, last week the legislature passed the College Campus Press Act.

From the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) web site:

The Chicago Tribune reported (registration required) yesterday that the Illinois State Legislature has passed the College Campus Press Act, a bill that the Tribune reported "would allow college student journalists to write articles without fear that college officials could censor or bar publication of their work." State Senator Susan Garrett, sponsor of the bill, said, "It just made sense to me that college journalists should have the same types of opportunities to present their material as journalists in the professional media…They shouldn’t be subjected to prior review by public university administrations, because that really stifles free speech." The bill, which passed unanimously in the Illinois Senate and 112-2 in the House, now awaits only Governor Rod Blagojevich’s signature in order to become state law.

The bill came in the wake of the Hosty v. Carter decision, in which the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit ruled that a dean of students who exercised prior restraint over a student newspaper—unequivocally because of its viewpoint—was entitled to immunity from liability. Read FIRE’s amicus brief to the Seventh Circuit here.

If administrators are going to continue taking hugely unpopular steps to trample upon students’ rights and if judges are going to let them, then the people and their representatives are going to take action. It is always amazing how college administrators and many legal minds are willing to make excuses for censorship when the common sense of the public is so firmly against it, as shown by this overwhelming vote to guarantee student press freedom. Administrators take note—the Illinois bill is not the first of its kind, and it will likely not be the last.

Here's an excerpt from the Tribune article:

The act was prompted in part by a case involving student journalists at Governors State University in University Park. Three GSU students sued the university in June 2001 when a dean blocked the student paper from being printed after several stories critical of the university administration were published.

Patricia Carter, then dean of student affairs, told the printing company not to print the student paper, The Innovator, before she reviewed and approved it, according to court documents. That paper hasn't been published since and was replaced by a new student paper, The Phoenix.

Sadly, this is the state of 21st century academia.

More from the Tribune:

In February 2006, the U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear an appeal from the former student journalists, Margaret Hosty, Jeni Porche and Steven Barba. The court let stand a lower court ruling that found Carter should not be held liable for her decision because the case law involving student publications was murky enough that she couldn't be expected to know what was legally permissible.

FIRE was deeply involved in the Governors State Case, as it is in many free speech situations on college campuses

In April FIRE produced a free video podcast, which is available from the iTunes web site. It's part of the Voices of Vision series--the April 23 entry.

The podcast focused on two situations where clearly students' free speech rights were violated, one at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, the other at the University of North Carolina-Greensboro.

FIRE co-founder Alan Charles Kors is interviewed, and he decries that state of contemporary academia, dominated 1960s activists, which has made going to college a "coercive four year re-education."

Of course FIRE also looks after the free speech rights of faculty, most notably of late is the Thomas Klocek affair at DePaul University.



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Sunday, April 15, 2007

Fisk on Fink: Robert Fisk joins the Norman Finkelstein tenure debate as DePaul's "perfect storm" gathers strength


Robert Fisk, the fact-challenged journalist who inspired the blogging term "fisking," who is also one of the few Western journalists to interview Osama bin Laden, and has the even more distinguished honor of having been invited to convert to Islam by the Sheikh himself, has joined in on the Norman G. Finkelstein tenure debate at Chicago's DePaul University.

Last week was a bad one at DePaul. As news reports today are dominated by another "Perfect Storm" clobbering New England, the Chicago Catholic college faces its own metaphorical one: The Thomas Klocek case, barring a settlement, is heading to trial, and DePaul's resident holocaust-minimizer, Norman G. Finkelstein, continues to fight for tenure at the school's Liberal Arts and Sciences department.

Finkelstein and Klocek are separate stories, but the urge not to tie them together is difficult: Finkelstein, a son of Holocaust survivors, minimizes the extent of the Shoah, and views Holocaust revelations as a racket to enrich Jews.

There we go again, Jews and money.

One time Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke admires Fink's work.

Klocek, a 15 year adjunct professor at DePaul and a Roman Catholic, was fired after engaging in discussion in which he defended Israel from spurious attacks from a few DePaul Muslim students. The students, with the help of CAIR, piled on the professor and hounded the man out of DePaul.

Robert Fisk's Independent column focuses on the simmering Alan Dershowitz-Norman Finkeltstein feud, and no surprise, Fisk, who has also had run-ins with Dershowitz, is very sympathetic to Finkelstein's situation.

Fisk did shed some well-needed light on the DePaul mantra of "Vincentian values." As a Catholic school, it would be natural of course to speak of "Catholic values" or "Christian values," but that might offend some students, such as the ones who forced Klocek at at DePaul. Vincentian values at DePaul are nothing more that secular-humanist feel-good values. There is nothing wrong with that, except that DePaul calls itself a Catholic school and takes pride in calling itself America's largest Catholic university. Just as there are RINOs, Republicans in Name Only, there are CINOs, Catholics in Name Only.

The dean of Finkelstein's college, Chuck Suchar, invoked "Vincentian values" in explaining his opposition to Finkelstein receiving tenure.

I loved too, that bit about "Vincentian values". That really does warrant a chortle or two. St Vincent de Paul - the real de Paul who lived from 1581 to 1660, not the de Paul of Chuck's soft imagination - was a no nonsense theologian who was captured by Muslim Turkish pirates and taken to Tunis as a slave. Here, however, he argued his religious values so well that he converted his owner to Christianity and earned his freedom. His charitable organizations - he also created a home for foundlings in Paris - became a legend which Chuck Suchar simply dishonors.

Meanwhile in Chicago, the dark clouds continue to roll in as DePaul's perfect storm gathers strength. And St. Vincent de Paul, picture above, can't be very happy about that.

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