Thursday, February 28, 2013

Today is UC Regents Lozano and Schilling official last day as regents...

Their terms officially end on March 1 according to their UCOP bio info. So, their tabs above have been updated to "vacant" status-- if you click on the vacant tabs there is some text for explanation and background.
Daily Cal Professors See Varying Success In Online Courses
UCSD Signs Up with MOOCs

while there, also see:
Public records law faces budget Ax 'The legislative analyst has recommended that state lawmakers in taking up the budget recast the mandated provisions as “optional best practices.”

Under that approach, local government officials would be required to either comply with the best practices or declare publicly at their first regularly scheduled meeting of the year that they plan not to do so.'

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Gov. Brown, The 'California Miracle Coke Secret Recipe' As It Relates To UC...

The Governor was in to giving a lecture at U. Chicago, talking at length w/ Friedman. and the Nat'l Gov meeting--but no public comment of Gov. Brown on Sequestration (or how it affects UC) during his DC trip?
Daily Bruin on The Sequester

UCR Highlander on the CA Community Colleges and Gov Brown and opinion on it.

they also cover sequestration impact for UC as well.

and UC Govt Relations folks have a fact sheet on it, of course.
On the Governor's trip to Chicago and DC:
"The idea was the focus of Brown's part of a lecture he and former Obama strategist David Axelrod gave graduate students at the University of Chicago last week, where Brown was visiting his sister before heading to Washington for a meeting of the nation's governors.

"I talked about the 'California Miracle,' how it's going to provide the model for the rest of the country in getting out of gridlock, cutting government, finding new revenues," Brown said."


"Brown talked for more than an hour and a half with Thomas Friedman, the famous New York Times columnist, in the lobby of the conference hotel on Saturday,"

-and he mentions the secret formula of the California Miracle being like the Coca Cola recipe- and his wife says they are being "understated" this year...
Do Cities get anything back on this effort?: According to Dr. Paula Cruz-Takash of UCLA's North American Integration and Development Center, which helped design the program, the cards have already proved wildly popular. Oakland issues between 200 and 250 a day to both its immigrant population and other marginalized communities.

"The program isn't just for undocumented folks," she explained to The Huffington Post. "The aim is to provide identification and banking services to lots of groups who need it."
following several sad and disturbing recent events at UCSC -hope that the rest of the UC system is stepping in to give all the necessary support to UCSC. "Butler came to Santa Cruz to study at the university and stayed, the newspaper said."
More on those in on "the call" at UC Regents Investments Committee Meeting yesterday. -- shouldn't the UC Regents have to disclose who they have pegged as participants for these meetings and provide an 'analyst disclosure' to the public? even CNBC etc does the regents vote on who gets to participate?
Mostly still disturbed by an audio clip that includes description of a 100 million dollar botched and then fixed transaction between the CA treasurer's office and UC Regents that sounds like it still is not fully resolved (??!). . "At some point, the state didn't make the payment and UC in effect had an overdrawn account by hundreds of millions of dollars. The bank now insists on getting the money first before the payroll goes out. This episode is described at..." --just check it out.
lots of nat'l policy decisions being made right now that relate to current news stories involving UC - on (stopping) violence against women act and even the voting rights act is up for being altered-- not far from UCSC there is a place that falls under the voting rights act-- not just Deep South-- in NY and CA and other places too.
there also is this story about UC Davis on animal shelters.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

On Picking Yudof's Replacement...

that other closed meeting today -Regents panel starts meeting in search for a new UC president- LA Times

The regents committee on Tuesday also spoke with representatives of the executive search firm contracted to help hire a new chief of the 10-campus university, according to Montiel. That company -- Isaacson, Miller -- specializes in education and not-for-profit leadership and has offices in San Francisco, Boston and Washington.

(as in Bain Boston?-hope not- and, does Larry Gordon mean Washington or Washington DC? westerners don't need to make the same east coast type mistakes.)

and they also mention the committee members (mostly appointed by Schwarzenegger and very limited in diversity)-- and that Gov. Brown is also on the committee and he did not participate in today's meeting- but is likely to be active in the search and placement.

UC Portfolio Returns Discussed

at this link, scroll to audio link at bottom of post to listen. But read the text of the post for some important questions that the audio raises. Many of the people talking during the meeting are NOT UC Regents. It is important to ask who they are, though.
Cal Pol Issues gives markers for important sections of the audio.

One more marker to pay attention to is at the 1:38:50 mark where the quarterly report on UC Foundations is covered and each is discussed in detail.
At about the 1:47 mark the UC Regents begin to ask about how they should interact with advise the UC Foundations and they receive counsel from staff on how that interaction should occur - particularly when discussion about UCSB foundation comes up and also in discussion about UC Berkeley and UC Davis purpose based portfolio performance etc.

Today's Little Hoover Higher Ed Meeting Materials,Testimony

at Little Hoover meeting today:

Robert Samuels, President, University Council-American Federation of Teachers and Lecturer, University of California, Los Angeles
Samuels Testimony to Little Hoover Commission

Robert Powell, Chair, University of California Academic Senate and Professor, University of California, Davis Powell testimony and add'l materials here.

additional materials can be found in the links in the agenda here.

Important to note that also providing testimony:

Daphne Koller, Co-founder, Coursera and Professor, Stanford University

Sebastian Thrun, Co-founder, Udacity and Former Professor, Stanford University

Dean Florez, President and Chief Executive Officer, Twenty Million Minds Foundation

but none of Koller's or Thrun's or Florez's testimony is provided as a link or as additional materials in the agenda.

We will continue to check Cal Channel etc. for video of the the meeting and will link to it in this post if becomes available later.

Recall some of the organizers of the Twenty Million Minds Foundation meeting at UCLA promised archive of the meeting to be posted after the live event--but it looks like it still remains unavailable at their website- all that is available is a pdf of the agenda and transcript of certain speeches.) The 20mm people did tweet their participation in the Little Hoover Commission though. A very strange way for online advocates to push online higher ed...

Also, CSU and UC comes up in this video piece but: why is Dean Florez always presenting but we never hear from the founder of 20 mm? They call it a news conference but it seems like an infomercial- and how does this Conan Nolan back up the claim that "nobody knows more about online education" etc.?

View more videos at:

Back to the Li'l Hoover again: The Little Hoover Commission touts itself as "An Independent Voice for Government Reform" -- but it seems it does not provide the same forum for each of the Californians who testify before them. Some speakers' materials and testimony are included in links and video archive --and some speakers are not-- this affects the way policy is shaped.
Reminder: Cal's AVC Wilton is doing his budget meeting with students tonight. "On Tuesday, Feb. 26, they’ll get their chance to raise such questions directly to John Wilton, the campus’s vice chancellor for administration and finance. The open forum – to be held from 6 to 7:30 p.m. in 105 Stanley Hall – is sponsored by Wilton’s student advisory group."

Monday, February 25, 2013

To date, UC Berkeley is the only organization that Weisbach convinced try his financing model. He said he has shopped the idea around hundreds of other universities and pro-teams in the United States and Great Britain, but no one else trusted that the numbers would add up "The deal with the UC Berkeley is the one deal we’ve consummated at this point," Weisbach said. So who was responsible for making the decision to go with long-term VIP seating? "That’s one of the things we discovered," said Professor Stanton. "Many of the people who are here now were not here when the decision was made,” he said.

See: UC Berkeley Struggles With Unproven Stadium Funding Model By Hannah Mintz and Zach Stauffer, UC Berkeley's Investigative Reporting Program; and Charla Bear, KQED- Please make sure to listen to the audio clip included in the article.

Excerpt: The program’s success remains critical for Cal to be able to pay back the nearly half-billion dollars in debt used to renovate the seismically vulnerable stadium and build a new state-of-the-art training facility.

But Cal is the only university trying to raise funds through this novel method, after the creator of the idea failed to sell it to scores of other universities and professional teams.

Excerpt: Recognizing a potential looming crisis, Wilton sought advice from three Haas Business School professors, each an expert in finance.

Richard Stanton, Nancy Wallace and William Fuchs spent the past nine months untangling the complex financing model to determine if Athletics will be able to fund its operation and meet its debt obligations. They have come up with different scenarios, but big questions remain about how many seats Honerkamp’s team will sell and how much revenue the endowment will generate.

Big questions remain about how many seats Honerkamp’s team will sell.

"They’re very far away from their original projections," Wallace said, “Especially for the most expensive seats, there’s some considerable uncertainty.”

Excerpt: At a meeting of the Board of Regents in September 2009, a Berkeley campus administrator, armed with numbers from Athletics, told the Regents that 65 percent of ESP tickets were sold to date, even though the actual figure was far lower. Convinced the plan was viable, the Regents approved $321 million in debt financing for the stadium.

When asked about the discrepancy, Barbour and other administrators said Athletics had changed its definition of the word “sold.”

Though the Berkeley campus has pledged that Athletics will make its debt payments, ultimately the Regents are on the hook for the bonds.

Excerpt: The basic elements of ESP were the brainchild of Lou Weisbach, managing partner of Stadium Capital Financing Group. Weisbach said the idea of ESP was completely fresh: use up-front premium seat sales to finance stadiums or provide capital.

Side Bar: Weisbach had a string of business failures before he signed his deal with UC Berkeley in early 2009.

“Nobody in the world had ever done this. To that extent it was very novel,” said Weisbach, who has a patent pending for the idea.

“Any idea that has never been done before in a marketplace, to try to figure out the percentage likelihood of success is really quite difficult,” Weisbach said. “Really, I guess at the very best is an educated guess,” he added.

With a little more scrutiny, Berkeley administrators might have noticed that Weisbach is a man who dreams big but often comes up short.

Weisbach has tried and failed to bring a professional baseball team to Las Vegas. He has been striving for a decade to create a $750 billion center for finding cures to diseases.

In 2002, just six years before the launch of ESP, Weisbach, along with his former marketing company, Ha-Lo Industries, was sued for securities fraud. Investors alleged that Ha-Lo and its officers – Weisbach had been CEO – sent out fraudulent press releases and other documents showing the company was in better financial health than it really was.

Weisbach denied all allegations in a signed declaration and said he was personally cleared of all charges. The case settled for $18 million, according to court records. This lawsuit never came up in his dealings with Cal, Weisbach said.

To date, UC Berkeley is the only organization that Weisbach convinced try his financing model. He said he has shopped the idea around hundreds of other universities and pro-teams in the United States and Great Britain, but no one else trusted that the numbers would add up

"The deal with the UC Berkeley is the one deal we’ve consummated at this point," Weisbach said.

So who was responsible for making the decision to go with long-term VIP seating?

"That’s one of the things we discovered," said Professor Stanton. "Many of the people who are here now were not here when the decision was made,” he said.

“There was a lot of chaos, unnecessary confusion,” said Professor Wallace.

She pointed out that of the many senior people involved with developing the ESP program, only Barbour remains.

When asked what was known about Weisbach and Stadium Capital before the deal, Barbour said, “We knew who the principals were by reputation from some of their previous work. Certainly they were backed by Morgan Stanley.”

The terms of the deal, made in June 2007, were not public.

According to Berkeley’s contract with Stadium Capital Financing Group, Weisbach’s company was slated to earn a 3 percent commission fee on ESP’s gross proceeds. A Cal Athletics spokesperson said the department paid Stadium Capital $4.8 million for its services.
it goes on and on like this... please read the article in full.

The deal was signed in 2009. The "sold" comments were made at the Sept 2009 Regents meeting. Who was around then at Cal- doing this- and where are they now? and who came up with the terms of the deal in June 2007- and where are they now? Are they still in Cal's California Hall or at UCOP headquarters?

(bold emphasis above added)

Some UC Regents Committees Meeting Feb 26th

UC Regents- For Meeting of February 26, 2013
Fourth Quarter 2012 FY 2012-13 To Date Investment
Performance Summary

Also For Meeting of February 26, 2013
University Of California Retirement Plan Asset Allocation
Review And Recommendations

and on Selecting A New UC President Process -interestingly, the committee members are: Regents Blum, Gould, Kieffer, Reiss, Rubenstein, Ruiz,
Stein, and Varner; ex officio members Brown and Lansing

as posted here.
The Little Hoover Commission Hearing on CA Higher Ed will also be taking place on the 26th.

Forests and Bubbles

that's Sutro Forest and UCSF

and for those talking Prop 13 changes consider this story: on California Migration and CA Real Estate.

and a Memorial Stadium financing 'update'

Saturday, February 23, 2013

"It is troubling that the health plan of one of the world's most prestigious university systems would not adopt this industry standard," the representatives wrote UC President Mark Yudof last week."

In "Boost Health Coverage Officials Urge UC" - SF Chron
"UC students and student workers should have access to the same health-care protections that millions of other students, student workers and Americans already enjoy," said the letter from California's Democratic representatives, including Pelosi of San Francisco, George Miller of Martinez, Barbara Lee of Oakland, and Anna Eshoo of Palo Alto.

Could it be?? This happened during the rollout of "Working Smarter Initiative" and "Operational Excellence Initiative":

Its 3-year-old, self-funded insurance program is already $57 million in the hole because an actuarial study misinformed the university about how much it should charge students, Klein said.

To resolve the mess, UC recently handed the insurance program off to Peter Taylor, the university's chief financial officer. UC also appointed 47 people, including students from every campus, to help untangle such questions as how much to charge and what changes to make. Proposals already include nearly doubling the price on some campuses.

P.S. recall the recently announced resignation of UC Pres Yudof- is he already checked out? "Meanwhile, Klein said Yudof is out of town and hasn't yet seen the politicians' letter."

Friday, February 22, 2013

Higher Ed Hospitals and the Steven Brill Med Piece

Steven Brill's excellent piece on hospitals -public research hospitals and private- a must read: “Bitter Pill: Why Medical Bills Are Killing Us”

consider the administrative/billing behaviors described and then consider the implications, the proximity to undergraduate and graduate education, tuition when public higher ed systems include hospital systems in the mix etc.

CNN coverage, and from CNN's Drew Griffin, who takes up the questions on hospital administrators compensation -- in a way very reminiscent of how coverage of compensation for higher ed admin is discussed. It might make you sick to your stomach, but is a must see. more here.

His appearance on the Daily Show

Slate's coverage

and Brill interviewed about it by Charlie Rose
an important Feb 26th Q & A -- will the SHIP hit the fan?

Chu: "The highest point in my career was when I became a professor in (such) a great institution."

a big 'f*&% you' to LBL and Cal?
Energy Secretary Chu to return to Stanford
Energy Secretary Steven Chu will return to Stanford University after he steps down this year.

Chu, a Nobel Prize-winning physicist, will rejoin Stanford's faculty, where he taught physics and applied physics from 1987 to 2008. Upon his return, Chu will work jointly for the physics department and the medical school's Department of Molecular and Cellular Physiology.

The exact date of Chu's departure from Energy has not been set. No successor has been nominated, although Ernest Moniz, a physics professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a former top Energy Department official, is considered the leading candidate.

Chu told the Stanford Daily he was excited about his return. He said, "The highest point in my career was when I became a professor in (such) a great institution."

from Stanford Daily:
Even as he approaches a return to academia after his time in office, however, Chu acknowledged that choosing between Stanford and Berkeley– where he completed his postdoctoral studies– was a difficult decision. Ultimately, however, the presence of four of Chu’s grandchildren in Palo Alto proved to be a critical factor.
“They’re both great universities, but I’m very happy to be coming back to Stanford,” Chu concluded.

Memories. (the Bell Labs boyz with Arnold...)
Looks like the folks in Michigan are not impressed with the regents 'grading their own papers'- see the comments at that story...

"It was very important [for donors] to see the governance of the university in action," Deitch said.
Saez and ephemeral elevators- a good read.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

He Quit, but: "The course is continuing, with his materials."

yep, "The course is continuing, with his materials."
it raises all sorts of questions....

UC mentioned: Universities Abroad Join Partnerships on the Web

And last weekend, one month into his Microeconomics for Managers course, Richard B. McKenzie, an emeritus professor at the University of California, Irvine, quit, telling students that “because of disagreements over how to best conduct this course, I’ve agreed to disengage from it, with regret.” The course is continuing, with his materials.

Among Coursera’s new partners are a Spanish business school, several United States public universities, including the University of California campuses in San Diego and Santa Cruz,

more on the UCSC online courses being offered here.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

CA Assembly Budget SubCommittee Part II on Education Finance

UPDATE: here is the link to the archive of the meeting.

LIVE-you can listen/watch live here at this link.
Governor's Higher Education Funding Proposal for 2013-14 covered in detail
Ryan Storm, Assistant Program Budget Manager, Education Systems, California Department of Finance
Jennifer Kuhn, Deputy Legislative Analyst's Office currently presenting on net price of tuition --mentions net as 13%,15%,17% over last five years - maybe not as bad as people think when they hear tuition doubled since 2007, she says aid has increased too. what do you think?
Segment Perspectives (segments of CA public higher ed i.e. CCC, CSU, UC)
Patrick Lenz UC
Turnage CSU and Troy CCC.
-will post the archive here in this post when available
here it is:

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CA Gov. Brown says no to oil tax and LAO says no to tuition freeze?

first see:
Jerry Brown, the LAO, and the Logic of Austerity
Both the Governor (39) and the LAO (24-26) emphasize the need to improve the state's record in enabling students to complete their degree work. Both however overlook one substantial reason that students take longer to complete their degrees than in the past--the hours of employment they take on in order to pay for their part of their college education. As is typical of austerity economics, the Governor and LAO's blithe acceptance of the necessity of decreased state support has shifted the burden onto students, compelled them to spend more time at jobs and less time as students, and therefore slowed down their progress to degree. No fiddling with "bottleneck" courses will compensate for this time and labor.

Indeed, an understanding of the significance of this shift of burdens reveals how shallow the Governor's understanding of Higher Ed is, and how problematic LAO's critique of his suggestions are.

(Then see this earlier story on the the Gov. Brown position on oil tax. and the LAO position on no tuition freeze may involve this thinking: On Fitch and Tuition- "While the additional state funding is positive, UC is not expected to raise tuition for 2013 - 2014, which will be the second year of flat student charges. This somewhat limits UC's tuition raising flexibility which Fitch has historically noted as a credit positive." )
There also is this very good op ed at Daily Cal on CA: People Deserve A Bureaucratic Rethink

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Get A Clue

This op ed: SHIP’s Future Is Not Certain
written by:
Ron Coley is associate vice chancellor of business and administrative services.
Harry Le Grande is vice chancellor of student affairs.
Andrew Szeri is dean of the Graduate Division-- and Daily Cal fails to also mention he is heavily involved with Operational Ex initiative.

after that, read: New Data on Global Competition for Ph.D. Talent
The UC Regents only give a seat at the table to 'certain' folks- and they only listen to half of it anyway.

You may or may not agree with Ellis' and Geshekter's politics, research, or their approach - but their correspondence with Yudof and Lansing etc. might show a pattern that others have written about and experienced as well. -it should be noted that this pair/their group can address the UC Regents during public comment, pool their time for extended comments, and be ignored by the UC Regents just like every other group that wants to be heard at the UC Regents meetings.
Changing Universities on the Sacto UC budget hearing and nat'l scorecard initiative.

Monday, February 18, 2013

The Shove - "Worked, didn't it?"

Montgomery faces widespread criticism after shoving Crabbe

and KTVU News Coverage
"It is unacceptable for our coaches to have physical contact with student-athletes regardless of the circumstances," she said. "The second-half incident was certainly out of character for Mike Montgomery, and I am confident that something like this will not happen again."

Montgomery tried to make light of the controversy in the postgame news conference, smiling and saying the move motivated Crabbe. He also said he would do it again.

"Worked, didn't it?" Montgomery said of the exchange with Crabbe.

since we're on sports- there is this: Top Enforcement Officer of N.C.A.A. Is Ousted

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Fichtenbaum, Glantz, Samuels

and others-- Inside Higher Ed 'Rejecting the New Normal' : All three authors acknowledged that carrying out their ideas was largely dependent on the political will behind them. But they pointed to an increasingly student-debt-ridden public and the success of recent legislation to increase public education funding in California as proof that change is not only possible but necessary.


“Everyone knows it’s a problem and it’s getting worse and worse and worse,” said Samuels. “People want to do two things: they want to contain the cost and they want to see how they can fund it. We’re presenting different possibilities as to how they can do that.”

also in
Professors Reject The New Normal- PROFESSORS in the US have pushed back against what they called the "new normal" of higher education - namely that it can no longer be free or at least affordable - during a forum organised by the Campaign for the Future of Higher Education last week.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

UCOP's Lenz on UC Budget; Fitch Ratings and Tuition etc.

UCOP's Patrick Lenz testimony to CA Legislature on UC Budget- he also discusses online instruction programs at UC. Note: it is a 4h 18 min meeting.

Apparently--Two UC Academic Senate meetings in April will result in new online courses to be offered in Fall 2013. This is mentioned during Q and A.

Robert Turnage from CSU and Dan Troy from CCC also make presentations for those systems.

CA cap and trade $8 million cost for UC; SB 1440 Student Transfer Achievement Reform Act; Career Technical Education at UC; unit caps for students; the demise of CPAC and lack of a state level unit that conducts data analysis on higher ed for the legislature; the cost of benefits, unfunded liabilities in retirement etc. at CSU and trailer legislation to amend these benefits--all of these topics are highlighted in the discussion especially during Q and A. Funding for Capital Projects at UC and CSU is brought up as an important agenda item by Lenz at the end of the Q and A.

Once again: video for the full meeting begins with the CA Legislative Analyst's presentation followed by the CA Community Colleges and more. You can view the full 4 h 18 min video at this link.

On Fitch and Tuition: "While the additional state funding is positive, UC is not expected to raise tuition for 2013 - 2014, which will be the second year of flat student charges. This somewhat limits UC's tuition raising flexibility which Fitch has historically noted as a credit positive."

Fitch On UC in detail.

An inability to stem operating losses and return
to a near-breakeven level of performance over the near-term may result in
negative rating pressure. The rating assumes that management's ability to
improve operations will begin to be evidenced in fiscal 2013.

Federal monies received for research and interest subsidies associated with
Build America Bond (BAB) related debt service could be impacted by potential
federal sequestration. If sequestration occurs, Fitch anticipates that
management will be able to make the necessary budgetary adjustments; therefore
the impact is expected to be minimal relative to UC's resource base.

"UC's president also recently announced plans to step down effective August 2013. Fitch will monitor progress on this front as well, but takes comfort in the
stability, depth and experience of UC's existing senior management team."

Friday, February 15, 2013

CA Governor Brown and Research at Public Universities

WaPo A second act for Jerry Brown — and California By Harold Meyerson

includes this: What liberals would like is for Brown to consider still more tax increases — say, the imposition of an oil severance tax, which California alone among oil-producing states does not have — to restore state services to pre-2008 levels. State spending is still 18 percent less than it was in 2006, and California has 11 percent fewer teachers than it had then.

But Brown will have none of this. “The answer is no on taxes,” he told me in a recent interview. The annual “state spending on schools [and universities] will go from $47 billion to $63 billion in the next five years” with the funds from Proposition 30. “I think we should digest this great leap forward before we contemplate anything further.”

UCLA Faculty Blog talks about the proposed Oil Tax in CA -- that post mentions one of many scandals in CA over "hidden funds" -- here are some others related to education: see this story about the lunch money in several districts going to other things and this op ed covers some of the other recent scandals -- to start.

and Daily Cal's Senior Editorial Board takes issue with some of the other quotes coming from the CA Governor in that WaPo piece: Brown Is Wrong On Research Recent comments from the governor demonstrate that he fails to fully grasp the importance of the UC as a research institution. Daily Cal also has this article: Professors, Students Question Usefulness of Technology in Classroom
Remaking the University: How Public Research Universities Are Losing the Framing Wars
President of UC Berkeley Math Club comes out as a DREAMer — and explains ... His video, "The Economic Argument for the Dream Act," coverage here and the video and more coverage here.
What is forgotten in all the hubbub is that the financial models of most elite universities nowadays are not based primarily on educating undergraduates. Undergraduate education is undoubtedly central to what a university is, but it is generally a low-margin activity, when it isn’t being explicitly subsidized by endowments and other sources of income, and often makes up a relatively modest proportion of turnover compared with postgraduate education, research, and other sources of income. I suspect that the real issue for the future of most elite universities will be postgraduate education, which MOOCs have less purchase on. Indeed, in the face of MOOCs and other similar developments, I suspect that the reaction of most elite universities will be to think even more carefully about any expansion of their online or offline undergraduate education. from this Chron Higher Ed piece.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

CA Speaker Perez's numbers on UC vs UCOPs numbers on UC

At UC: "tuition next year should outpace the state reduction by at least $700 million."
the numbers offered by Changing Universities:
"Speaker John Perez stated at the last regents meeting that, “We've made roughly $900 million in cuts and you've increased fees $1.4 billion dollars. The [fee] increases were disproportionate to the level of disinvestment by the state.” While I do think Perez’s number are a little off, we can look at historical data from the LAO to clarify the situation. Using 2007-8 as our baseline, the following year, the federal recovery money made up for the state reduction, but tuition went up over $700 million (and some faculty and staff had a pay cut called a furlough). The next year, the state funding was $700 million less than 2007-8, and tuition revenue went up $390 million, so we can say the total loss for the first two years was $310 million. In 2010-11, additional recovery money reduced that year’s state reduction to $230 million, but tuition revenue increased $430 million. In 2011-12, the baseline state reduction was $1 billion, and the tuition increase was over $1 billion. If we add up all of these yearly numbers, over the four-year period, the total reduction was $100 million, and if we look at the budget for 2012-13, the tuition revenue is up $1.1 billion from 2007-8’s rate, and state funds are down $700 million. In other words, the five-year change is that UC revenue from tuition and state funds is up $300 million."

and a pattern of UCOP behavior described in this post: Some Real UC Budget Facts

"We've put all that behind us, governor," Moynihan said. "I won't remember it if you don't."

UC/Cal hosts this: Gov. Brown, BofA Chief Offer No Easy Answers For Housing Woes
Brown and Bank of America CEO Brian Moynihan speak at a UC Berkeley summit on the future of residential housing in California.
Remember at the last UC Regents meeting when UC Regent Reiss used the expression about "a sage on a stage" as she expressed her enthusiasm for online instruction and how bad, outdated traditional face to face lecture styles are? -- (and, with Reiss seated directly between them) remember Regent Pattiz looked at Regent De La Pena w/ what looked like a 'why the f--- did she just say that?' look and Regent De La Pena looked back at Regent Pattiz with a frozen concerned expression and then Reiss looked around the table at other expressions on other UC regent faces? (b/c the UC Regents were likely told by staff and by Yudof to be careful of the sensibilities of stakeholders, like faculty, who might be listening to this controversial agenda item etc..)

Well, it looks like there was a posh (posh b/c of jazz and the ladies who lunch/tea ambience?? - that is a low bar.) event where it might be perceived that the DC beltway was asked to write up something for the DC beltway about stuff that mainly gets created and implemented in... California. But that would be a snarky, not completely accurate way of describing it. We are told it was:
"a high-level gathering of federal government, Gates Foundation, and university people, all of whom convened to talk about how to use online technology to improve education for American students, from elementary to graduate school.

Their mission- if they chose to accept it: "was to contribute to a report that will be read by the Department of Education, the National Science Foundation, and other agencies as they implement national online ed initiatives. They wanted to know about best practices, the latest research, controversies across the very broad field of knowledge and technology."

Anyway, the 'sage on a stage' thing came up again and, this time included a potential substitute for 'the sage':
On the college level, many people at the conference insisted that (again using the popular jargon) the "sage on the stage" must be replaced by the "guide on the side."

by UD
--read the post for more detail on the event and thoughts on sages.
Maybe the beltway can also talk to the beltway on another issue cropping up... -institutions that go on the record about wanting H1 B and J1 visas to increase - apparently these same institutions don't provide a decent benefits package to these visa holders once they are in the USA:

Union initiates petition to provide postdoctoral researchers equal health coverage

The petition claims that the current situation for some postdoctoral researchers forces them to look outside the UC-provided coverage for “inferior catastrophic plans at great personal cost.”

Blanca Rios Touma, a visiting researcher in the UC Berkeley Institute of Urban and Regional Development, opted out of the PSBP due to its higher cost compared to the travel insurance she currently holds.

“My case is not the worst — there were postdocs with families,” Touma said. “People who are expecting babies — their cases are really dramatic, because the university premium is so high.”

Mehmet Somel, unit chair of the Berkeley UAW Local 5810 joint council, noted that postdoctoral researchers are generally between 30 and 36 years old, and a decent number have families to take care of.

“Some people had to buy expensive health insurance specifically for their young children while not having any for themselves,” Somel said.

Sweeney added that the current coverage terms appear to be especially problematic for international researchers like Touma, as a majority of those affected by the lack of equal access to health care are in the United States on immigrant guest-worker visas.

It is an all important topic when immigration comes up for US Presidential debates or SOTU comes, the beltway must have answers that they just need to share, implement, no?

It is not like these programs just started up.

Important to note this issue does not have any spillover for the folks who pick your fruits, vegetables or do food handling -- b/c thinking about healthcare or sanitary workplace conditions for the people who handle the food that goes in your mouth is just all kinda cray-cray thinking... that is what we are told by pols on both sides of the aisle.
Doin' Apple University and Cal at the same time.

Happy V Day.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

POTUS, SOTU: Changing the Higher Education Act and more

President Obama's State Of The Union speech- section on Education:
"Tonight, I propose working with states to make high-quality preschool available to every child in America. Every dollar we invest in high-quality early education can save more than seven dollars later on – by boosting graduation rates, reducing teen pregnancy, even reducing violent crime. In states that make it a priority to educate our youngest children, like Georgia or Oklahoma, studies show students grow up more likely to read and do math at grade level, graduate high school, hold a job, and form more stable families of their own. So let’s do what works, and make sure none of our children start the race of life already behind. Let’s give our kids that chance.

Let’s also make sure that a high school diploma puts our kids on a path to a good job. Right now, countries like Germany focus on graduating their high school students with the equivalent of a technical degree from one of our community colleges, so that they’re ready for a job. At schools like P-Tech in Brooklyn, a collaboration between New York Public Schools, the City University of New York, and IBM, students will graduate with a high school diploma and an associate degree in computers or engineering.
We need to give every American student opportunities like this. Four years ago, we started Race to the Top – a competition that convinced almost every state to develop smarter curricula and higher standards, for about 1 percent of what we spend on education each year. Tonight, I’m announcing a new challenge to redesign America’s high schools so they better equip graduates for the demands of a high-tech economy. We’ll reward schools that develop new partnerships with colleges and employers, and create classes that focus on science, technology, engineering, and math – the skills today’s employers are looking for to fill jobs right now and in the future.

Now, even with better high schools, most young people will need some higher education. It’s a simple fact: the more education you have, the more likely you are to have a job and work your way into the middle class. But today, skyrocketing costs price way too many young people out of a higher education, or saddle them with unsustainable debt.

Through tax credits, grants, and better loans, we have made college more affordable for millions of students and families over the last few years. But taxpayers cannot continue to subsidize the soaring cost of higher education. Colleges must do their part to keep costs down, and it’s our job to make sure they do. Tonight, I ask Congress to change the Higher Education Act, so that affordability and value are included in determining which colleges receive certain types of federal aid. And tomorrow, my Administration will release a new “College Scorecard” that parents and students can use to compare schools based on a simple criteria: where you can get the most bang for your educational buck.

To grow our middle class, our citizens must have access to the education and training that today’s jobs require..."

Blowing The Whistle On UC Waste Resulting In Privatization

Whistleblowing seems to be an event systemwide today- find out more at facebook
UC Regent Stein has thoughts about online in an op ed
this article on 'questioning whether the UC system is a politically neutral space' -talks about a letter Mark Yudof wrote and released -- but they don't provide the letter or details on its content...

SOTU, Fat Tuesday, and

some reading:
Remaking The University: Governor Brown Could Take An Important Step Towards Fixing Higher Ed
Changing Universities:
The Campaign for the Future of Higher Education: A Call for a New Funding
Daily Cal:
The University of California will refinance $1 billion of debt this month, which could potentially save the university millions of dollars.

The bonds for sale this month are General Revenue Bonds, which the university uses to borrow money for general expenses like education and research. Klein said the bonds will mature from 2014 through 2039 and be sold through the California State Treasurer’s Office.
“Based on current market conditions, the university expects to save approximately $200 million,”
The savings from refinancing, however, are not yet certain because the bond sales have not finished. Through refinancing, the UC system saved $20.5 million in 2012 and $19.1 million in 2011, according to its 2011-12 Annual Financial Report.
The UC currently has $17.3 billion of outstanding debt — an increase of almost $3 billion over the last year — according to the annual report. A majority of those funds came from the sale of $2.5 billion of General Revenue Bonds over the course of the last fiscal year.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Yudof: "I just don't see how it's possible to expand access to the University of California under current economic circumstances, and future ones, with a brick-and-mortar environment," he said. "I just don't see it getting done."

Sac Bee: Governor Brown Recognizes Future Is In Online Classes

"To accelerate the push, Brown wants to make a nearly $37 million investment.

His proposed state budget includes $16.9 million for community colleges and $10 million apiece for the UC and CSU systems to expand online options for hundreds of high-demand, prerequisite courses that fill up quickly.

At a UC regents meeting in January, system President Mark Yudof endorsed the effort.

"I just don't see how it's possible to expand access to the University of California under current economic circumstances, and future ones, with a brick-and-mortar environment," he said. "I just don't see it getting done."
"UC Irvine is trying a different model with a different MOOC firm, Coursera. Six of the university's courses are offered free or at low cost online – two for college credit – to students worldwide"
and on the mention about UC Irvine also consider the 'anybody but me/us' stance discussed in this post.

also see this post and this post for more.
another update on the UC Davis chem incident story...
Academic Counseling Racket by Joe Nocera -- the whole UNC story gets more and more confusing
This Week: Blame It On The Amygdala
"—if you give a promiscuous vole a little dose of oxytocin, it becomes monogamous."
in this post: How Love Grows in Your Body

Friday, February 8, 2013

Forecasts, Pols and For Profits, and other stuff

Hear this Commonwealth Club of CA event: UC Berkeley's Christina Romer and Stanford's Keith Hennessey: Bank of America/ Walter E. Hoadley Annual Economic Forecast (1/25/13)

or watch it below
Offensive: Virginia Foxx Invokes The Holocaust In Debate Over For-Profit College Regulations
and the Rebranding efforts and the for profits... In CA there is this going on...
Maybe Senator Harkin's papers can stay at UC?
UCSA asks Yudof to cut it out
see this Daily Cal Op Ed it includes: For this reason, students welcome the governor’s newfound interest in the UC system with great hope and excitement. We also know that funding cuts are only part of the problem. Similar to the governor’s recent call for greater “modesty” and “elegance” at the university, students have long raised questions and concerns about internal UC operations. At a time when students are being asked to give more and more, Californians expect the UC system to take a hard look at executive compensation, sharing profits across the system and more cost-effective ways to accomplish our core goals of instruction and research. UC executives should be paid less, and in some cases, faculty may need to teach more. Unfortunately, the governor’s actions on the UC system have not yet matched his rhetoric. The two areas of “reform” that he has touted as solutions are a “unit cap,” which is based on the misguided view that many UC students are staying too long by choice, and a $10 million earmark for “online education.” While experimenting with online education may be worthwhile, it is dubious that it will bring either significant cost savings or a new instructional model that meets long-held quality standards. We would expect more from a governor who is clearly interested in making waves. Unit caps and online education seem like mostly hype and disconnected from the challenges and barriers we face on a daily basis.
Can anyone get imaginative? 10% unemployment in CA and there is this situation...

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Mark Yudof On UC Online Future

and on the past regarding UC: 'I held the place together'

See full article and listen to audio interview at this link: Can Online Courses Save the University of California? Mark Yudof Looks Into the Future

Loosening Whose Straight Jacket?

(assume they meant jacket and not jack- cuz what is a straight jack in this context?)-from CalBuzz: PPIC Poll Public Would Make Schools Taxes Easier

But when it comes to changing policy in California in a way that would have a long-term impact, support for lowering the threshold for approving local measures for schools – a loosening of the straight jack that Prop 13 imposed 37 years ago – is the item the Legislature and governor ought to focus on.

Support among all adults for lowering that threshold from a two-thirds vote is higher today than it was in April 2011 (48%) and April 2009 (45%). More over, PPIC found, among public school parents, support is 65% — which suggests a ready-to-campaign core of voters who could push for a measure.

here is the PPIC Statewide Survey background and Full Report etc.

Cal Pub Policy covered this a bit earlier in a different way.

But what loosens up for Higher Ed specifically?

There are more surveys -from Lumina Foundation and ahem, Gallup etc.-on what Americans want with regard to higher education posted throughout this latest Inside Higher Ed article.
as folks sit around wondering and waiting for a spoon feeding on what the math is behind Speaker Perez's comments at UC Regents meeting regarding the difference between the $900 million and the $1.4 billion figures--and as others await answers to the questions about 'Where does UC Tuition Go', and the latest request to UC to open the books on the venture capital figures... recall the 'committed to transparency' op ed? Maybe just need some grad students to head over to UCOP to invoke the open door transparency...

The Nonexistent Committed To Transparency Open Door.
Gov. Jerry Brown likes to compare UC to the USPS.
As Gov. Rick Perry has somethin' to say about California-- he might want to be aware others have something to say about him..."[W]e suspect that Governor Perry has been sluicing cancer research money to his buddies." oh, Geeeezzzzz.
Yudof is loosening up in his comments to reporters, recently he mentioned he should write a book on all the Govs he's known- Jesse the Body, Ranger Rick, Ahhrrnolldd,and Jerry could be a good read.

(Yudof also said "I am not a doctor, I am a lawyer" when an reporter introduced him as Dr. Yudof-- guess he doesn't take the Juris Doctorate too literally...)

til then, there's Gov. Brown on Gov. Perry.

UC will pay Tedford up to $5.55 million in settlement

WaPo:California reached a settlement with former football coach Jeff Tedford on Monday that will pay him up to $5.55 million for the final three seasons of his contract.

Under terms of his contract, Tedford had been guaranteed $2.3 million a year for the final three seasons of his contract.

With the settlement announced by the school on Monday, Tedford will get $1.8 million in 2013, $1.8 million in 2014 and $1.95 million in 2015, saving Cal at least $1.35 million over the three years.

Yep, that's right they wrote s-a-v-i-n-g.

Strikes At UC?

see The Bottom Line: UC Unions in Protest Against ‘Golden Handshakes’ Shout ‘Si se Puede!'

“Today was the last day of the service contract,” she said. “The Regents have not accepted any of our major proposals or included protective language in the contract for safe staffing, having breaks, wage raises…were coming out to show our dissatisfaction with the UC increasing executive pay and pension while tuition increases and service cuts continue.”

Guzman continued by indicating that the educational ideal of the UC system had gone astray.

“The UC system is being run more like a corporation than a university, even Governor Jerry Brown has indicated that the UCs should restrain the long-term expense of dramatically high pensions,” said Guzman.

Following the retirement of UC President Mark Yudof and the revelation that he would be receiving a $230,000 pension, the coalition of UC union workers—who customarily receive $18,000 pension after 20 years of service—believed this was the time to combat even further cuts to their livelihoods.


According to the rules of union negotiation, once a contract expires, and in lieu of an agreement between the two parties, the worker’s union transfers to a system called status quo, where the union gains the right to strike, but loses the ability of forced arbitration. In short, the unions must convince the Regents of their cause through local advocacy, coalition unity and the ability to protest.

“It’s difficult for a union to organize protests, but when all the contracts expire the possibility of a union-wide strike is possible,” said Orr.

Since the AFSCME contracts have yet to be renewed, this might not be the last time a union protest appears on the university campus. Though it could be said that the UC system and California are in dire straits economically, there seems to be a polar disagreement about where the remaining funds should be allocated, and also as to where new money can be unearthed. The potential for a serious clash is looming if the Regents do not acknowledge the points of obvious financial disparity that the protest hopes to bring to light.

yep, that kind of roundup...

see: Patent Reform, System Should Be Abolished, Fed Economists Say

and, then: In Standing Up for Big Ag, Are Universities Undercutting Their Own Researchers?

if you put in UC and Monsanto in the google--all sorts of interesting things pop up:

like this UC news article

and this from Alternet

and this organic consumers piece
Assembly member proposes bills to curb education costs
Endowment returns drop for UC Berkeley, universities across the nation

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

UC Has To Open The Books...

University of California must disclose venture capital returns, judge rules

Maybe...UC has until March 11th to appeal.

The university failed to show that the performance data for individual funds "does not relate to the conduct of the people's business or that it does not have constructive possession of that information," wrote Judge Evelio Grillo in his order. Constructive possession means the right to control the records.

"Assuming that the regents can obtain the fund level information, it is not exempt from disclosure," he wrote. Sequoia has already made some returns data public.

The lawsuit illustrates the conflict between the desire of public investment funds to invest with top-tier venture firms and the desire of some of those firms to keep their performance under wraps.

and here is more in depth business coverage of the story Judge: University of California must disclose more information about its investment in Kleiner Perkins, Sequoia Capital
By Peter Delevett

Monday, February 4, 2013

"the great hope of the rebenching model might be dashed by the UCOP’s refusal to present a non-manipulated budget."

See Changing Universities: Where Does UC Tuition Go?
" Yet, the truth always continues to live a life of its own, and sometimes, it emerges into daylight, and when it does, the pile of half-truths and misrepresentations backfires. In this case, UCOP’s budget distortions could result in a decrease in state funding and an adoption of a costly online program, which will cheapen the UC degree and will put pressure to raise tuition as students pay more for less and faculty are asked to do more for less."
How many UC exec assistants
also have this kind of set up?
re: Yudof's recent statement that he does not want chancellors paid like executive assistants...
when reading the post from Changing Universities above - also recall Yudof comments about online instruction for the first two years discussion.

Yudof, UT and Trends

for the record, the author of this piece called it "California-Berkeley":

University Of Texas, Rick Perry Clash Over Future Of Public Higher Education

"But in an era of budget-cutting and soaring tuition, is there still a place for "Cadillacs" – elite, public research institutions like Texas, Michigan, California-Berkeley and Virginia that try to compete with the world's best? Or should the focus be on more affordable and efficient options, like the old Chevrolet Bel Air?"

"Along the way, career casualties are piling up. Over the last 18 months, presidents of 11 of the 35 leading public research universities have quit or been fired."
Another recent report, by the National Science Foundation, found state support for the 101 major public research universities fell 20 percent between 2002 and 2010.

Those institutions are "the backbone of this nation's knowledge economy," Duderstadt said. "If the states turn their back on them, they're committing a grievous act against the national interest."
Yet while state funding cuts have been devastating, Duderstadt says universities and their growing legions of well-paid administrators haven't always helped their cause with the public. "They're just totally deaf, dumb and blind on how the crazy things they do on campuses convince the American people that they don't have any ability to control costs," he said.
Still, in spots on campus one could wonder if this isn't more car than Texas taxpayers need. The law school's faculty is highly regarded in academia – and very well paid. But could it use fewer theorists, and more practitioners?
Does "academic research" call first to mind tweedy professors expounding on poetry in journals nobody reads? Or scientists curing diseases and spinning off businesses?

Is "productivity" common-sense practices for cutting through academic inefficiency and lowering costs? Or code for replacing the nuanced work of nurturing young minds with crude, assembly-line widget-making?
A high-profile group of state business and political leaders called the Texas Coalition for Excellence in Higher Education was launched, roiled by a study from another conservative group arguing that UT-Austin could get by with one-third its current faculty if they taught more efficiently.

and on comparisons with U Va Dragas and Sullivan, elitism or elite and lots more

Don't underestimate the Texas Exes

All My Exes Live In...

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Yudof: "I've been the head of two other universities and I never had a board meeting closed down by protesters until I came to the University of California. California has a more robust 1st Amendment tradition and that's fine."

The LA Times has a conversation with Departing UC President Yudof

On Governor Brown:
"Gov. Jerry Brown suddenly became active in UC policies and Mark Yudof resigns. Is there any connection?

There is really no connection because I've been pondering [resignation] for a long time. The governor is extraordinarily intelligent, he is extraordinarily passionate. It does require some energy to respond to his ideas, but I'm fine with that. That would not be a reason to move on. If anything, I have some confidence that out of this passion of the governor, some very positive things for the university can come."

Other nuggets:

On the next UC President: "And it could well turn out to be someone within UC, but at this time I would say 55-45 [percent] it would be someone from the outside."

"I've even suggested joint departments where one department can cover two campuses. But it has to be done very carefully."

"The days of building new brick-and-mortar campuses may well be over."

"I don't expect [chancellors] to work for the same salaries you pay an executive assistant...." UUGGHH
soon to be former Energy Sec. Steven Chu to head to the UC Davis Westwood Village Project and find out WTH is goin' on?!

It could happen...but maybe not for the UCLA grand hotel potential boondoogle...
Education leaders debate the future of public higher education in California with President Mark G. Yudof of the University of California system, Chancellor Timothy Peter White of the California State Universities and Colleges, and Chancellor Brice W. Harris of the California Community Colleges -it runs about 48 minutes.

UC Regents Meeting again in Sacto in May--looks like it according to the meetings and agenda calendar...

all of the other meetings this year will occur at UCSF Mission Bay

which is weird-- recall that UCSF wants out-- what kind of message does it send to hold all meetings at UCSF?
This is an interesting story given what POTUS once called the textbook 'racket'...

and an op ed on: UC Research Should Be Free.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Unsustainable... A Drag

In the category of Tell Us Somethin' We Don't Know:
Student Loan Debt: New Reports Find 'Unsustainable' Trend Dragging Economy
Two new reports released this week show Americans are increasingly struggling to repay student loan debt, creating a drag on the economy and wasting taxpayer money if borrowers default on their loans.

An analysis released on Tuesday of 10 million credit files from Fair Isaac Corp. (FICO) found the average student debt load ballooned 58 percent from 2005 to 2012 -- from $17,233 to $27,253. In the same period, the number of consumers with two or more open student loans on their credit report grew from 12 million in 2005 to 26 million in 2012, according to the Wall Street Journal.

The FICO estimate is higher than the Project on Student Debt's most recent annual report, which estimated the class of 2011's average debt at $26,600.

Of student loans issued between 2005 and 2007, an industry boom period, 12.4 percent are 90 days past due, according to FICO. Forbes reports 15.1 percent of loans issued between 2010 and 2012 are 90 days past due.

Dr. Andrew Jennings, FICO’s chief analytics officer and head of FICO Labs, said in a release the situation is "simply unsustainable."

The BS of Belonging

The Benefits BS of Belonging

UC SHIP considers raising premiums to close $57 million deficit

A report released on Jan. 11 by Alliant Insurance Services, an actuarial firm hired to consult for UC SHIP management, said that UC SHIP has accumulated a projected $57 million deficit throughout the 2010-13 plan years.

Bahar Navab, Graduate Assembly president and UC Berkeley representative on the UC SHIP advisory board, said that the UC Office of the President is recommending student premiums be increased by an average of 25 percent for the 2013-14 plan year. The report suggests increasing premiums for UC Berkeley students by 19.8 percent as well as similar increases at other UC campuses.

UC employee labor union protests contract negotiations
The group gathered partially in response to changes to the UC employee pension plan. Starting in July, the university is enacting a two-tiered plan. Employees hired on or after July 1 will receive pension benefits different from those afforded to current employees. Current employees will be expected to give 6.5 percent of their salaries to the pension plan as of the July start date, as compared to the 5 percent they gave last year. New employees will pay 7 percent.
and at UCLA too
Where is the data on UC Staff diversity?
recall a week back when applications for admissions press releases where out all over the place? they pointed to this page.
(Why do they pair up the student and staff data anyway?)
If you scroll further down they claim to have staff information-- but if you click on the links -- you are directed to the home page of 'At Your Service' -- generic benefits and employee relations home pages --but no data on staff displays, no link to tables like the incoming applications to be UC students. Why? It would be interesting to see how the administrative bloat breaks down... also the payroll trends when compared with race and gender... but no data displayed. In fact, it looks like this information was once available years ago-- but the archive has been removed and current figures completely unavailable.

Is there something missing, overlooked, is there a URL out there that displays this?

and even with the diversity title this certainly doesn't...

Is central administration trying to bury the stats on its current staff?
Steven Chu is resigning as energy secretary.

The CA Conversation On Academic Senate and Shared Governance

regarding the California Community College system in this Inside Higher Ed article from September 2012: Who's in Control?

it mentions California Competes--note that a number of UC alumni are a part of that organization.