Tuesday, June 15, 2021

As SCOTUS Asks Govt To Ponder Harvard Admissions, University of California seems to be having new round after new round of Varsity Blues type admissions scandals unaddressed?

 - and the UC problems in policies and procedures remain unaddressed? What happened with the CSA audit findings and implementation of recommendations of last year and the UC Regents own internal review of what happened?

First, some coverage about:
"Justices request government’s views on Harvard affirmative-action dispute"
https://www.scotusblog.com/2021/06/justices-request-governments-views-on-harvard-affirmative-action-dispute/

yet on UC, well

We mentioned earlier that last week there was a piece of legislation from CA Leg to address some of the actions revealed in the Varsity Blues College admissions scandal :
AB 251 admission by exception and Varsity Blues history comes up at the 38 minute mark in the vid link provided in this recent post
here: https://cloudminder.blogspot.com/2021/06/former-gov-jerry-brown-called-into.html

Now, here is a new round of Varsity Blues type issues claimed and this time it involves UC Irvine, UC Riverside, and  former staffers at UCOP who are now UC contractors and consultants as they interact with UC leadership, see :

"These two University of California campuses gave special perks to students at a private high school in China"
https://www.insider.com/university-of-california-gave-special-perks-students-chinese-high-school-2021-6
From Insider (formerly known as Business Insider):
   " An Insider investigation has found that California's highest-ranking education official and leading public universities worked closely with a swaggering entrepreneur to give special accommodations to students at a private high school for elite families in China.
    UC Irvine offered summer school programs specially arranged for students at the private academy in Qingdao, China, dispatched admissions staffers to its campus to talk to students and their parents, and reported on the students' progress through the admissions cycle.
    At UC Riverside, the ties were even closer: The university pledged to work with the school's students to help them become competitive applicants and offered them special permission to submit applications even after the deadline had passed.
    The superintendent of a Southern California school district that worked with the Chinese school publicly proclaimed that UC Riverside guaranteed admission to all of its graduates, according to the minutes of a public-school board meeting."

..."One former California education official told Insider such an arrangement, if true, would be "appalling.""...

   ..."Ma worked with some of the state's highest-ranking current and former education officials — Tom Torlakson, who at the time served as the state's superintendent of public instruction, and David Long, who previously served as state secretary of education before becoming the principal at Pegasus. With Torlakson and Long's help, Ma forged critical relationships with leading California universities and school districts to legitimize his operation"

"Ma worked to establish what he called a "favorable relationship" with UC Irvine and UC Riverside, both of which embraced the Chinese high school. That included paying a retired UC staffer who continued to work for UC Irvine as a contractor. Daniel Aldrich, a retired staffer for the UC Office of the President (as well as the son of UC Irvine's founding chancellor) worked for both UC Irvine and for Pegasus, Insider has learned." 
 
"Records show that Aldrich contacted UC campuses on behalf of Pegasus, and he also supplied UC Irvine officials with a list of Pegasus students interested in attending the university, so those staffers could monitor the students' progress through the admissions cycle. One senior admissions staffer specifically told Aldrich that the students looked like competitive applicants for UCI. Aldrich communicated with UC personnel about Pegasus using his active University of California email address. "

..."Long told Insider that Pegasus paid Aldrich as a consultant. "Especially with international students and parents, it's helpful to have someone that has had or is connected with, previously or currently [with the University of California]. We try to stay away from the current, but he's a consultant so it's not that big of a [deal]," Long added.

Aldrich confirmed to Insider that he was paid to consult for both UC Irvine and Pegasus, and that the high school also paid for him to travel to China. He said he never did anything improper in his work for Pegasus, which "produced quality students, and we look for quality students in the University of California."...

..."And in an interview, a former Pegasus headmaster told Insider that Long said that UC Irvine pledged to accept at least some Pegasus graduates."
..."Dave Long always spoke about his connections with UC Irvine and with the president there," Allen Riedel, the former headmaster, told Insider. "[He] told us...if they wanted to, they could go directly to UC Irvine no problem." When asked to clarify, Riedel said: "Dave Long reported that to me that they wouldn't take all of our students but they would take some of them."

Long denied that he ever made that statement. "I don't even know the president," he said. "And about a statement to say if you just come from Pegasus you can get in automatically, that's not correct. You have to reach the minimums to even be considered."

Yet, in an August 2018 email obtained by Insider, Riedel explicitly invoked "Dr. Long's connections" ...

--see the article and its links to more in full at : https://www.insider.com/university-of-california-gave-special-perks-students-chinese-high-school-2021-6

--this latest 2021 round is a reminder that we still have not heard the UC regents final conclusions on a 'post Varsity Blues in 2019' other UC 2020 round last year of admissions scandal that also included letters a UC Regent wrote to campus leadership that was said to be against UC policies and Regents procedures and also involved certain UC Berkeley staffers actions.

https://www.sfchronicle.com/education/article/UC-Regent-Richard-Blum-named-in-admissions-15594754.php

https://theaggie.org/2020/10/28/uc-allegedly-admitted-64-students-due-to-connections-with-staff-or-donors-audit-asserts/

https://www.dailycal.org/2020/09/25/uc-must-undergo-essential-reform-in-wake-of-admissions-scandal/

then, there was some of this attitude on it in certain quarters at that time:
https://www.latimes.com/opinion/story/2020-09-25/64-wrongful-uc-admissions-out-of-many-thousands-are-not-a-scandal

 The UC Regents were supposed to conduct a review of all that when those findings came out in a CA state auditor report, the UC response to the CSA recommendations etc are all under the oversight of the JLAC committee in Sacramento but it seems to be crickets on all of it at UC and, aside from the new legislation proposed last week, mentioned here:
https://cloudminder.blogspot.com/2021/06/former-gov-jerry-brown-called-into.html
 -crickets in Sacto specifically on the CSA findings and status of recommendations for UC and if any implementation.

UCOP president Drake visited UC Irvine last week cuz they named a part of a street after him there- the UC public relations put out content on it over and over. In fact, Drake is going to be hiring another high comp UCOP VP for public relations, to replace UCOP VP Holmes, at the Regents meeting on June 23rd that agenda item is mentioned below in: https://cloudminder.blogspot.com/2021/06/university-of-california-regents.html- but did he discuss any of the above details with UC Irvine at that time? And will he discuss it with regents at the upcoming meeting on June 23 or in July or at all?

University of California Regents June 23, 2021 Meeting Agenda- Full Board, Governance and Health Committees. (UC Regent Ortiz Oakley comments on) UC changes policy on vaccination for Covid 19 for UC employees etc.

 Regent Eloy Ortiz Oakley, also chancellor of the CA community colleges system, is interviewed in a new SF Chron article:

but not on:
 https://calmatters.org/education/2021/06/thanks-but-no-thanks-why-community-colleges-are-resisting-170-million/
or,
https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2021/06/14/study-finds-community-colleges-are-only-colleges-world-growing-humanities

 or 
https://edsource.org/2021/former-gov-jerry-brown-defends-calbright-embattled-online-college/655472

Instead on:
 "UC reverses course, will require all students, faculty and staff to be vaccinated this fall"
https://www.sfchronicle.com/health/article/UC-reverses-course-will-require-all-students-and-16247884.php

"In an about-face, the University of California will require all students, staff and faculty to be vaccinated against the coronavirus this fall, even though the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved the vaccines only for emergency use.

UC President Michael Drake “does plan to move forward with the vaccine mandate,” Regent Eloy Oritz Oakley told The Chronicle on Monday."...

"Oakley said the regents have not been briefed on the new decision but that more information is expected at their two-day meeting that starts July 21."
...
"University Professional & Technical Employees union, told The Chronicle in April that unions representing UC staff members — including researchers, pharmacists and health care workers — were concerned that employees could lose their jobs if they declined to be vaccinated.

The union is one of several that filed an unfair labor practice charge against UC last fall over the university’s mandated flu vaccinations. The unions accused UC of making it difficult for employees to receive exemptions."
...
"California State University officials said Monday they were still planning to wait for full FDA approval before mandating COVID vaccinations. But that could change.

“We will continue to evaluate the situation as we get closer to the fall term,” CSU spokesperson Michael Uhlenkamp told The Chronicle.

Stanford University plans to require vaccinations for its students this fall."


 --Ortiz Oakley (or does he just go by Oakley now, or do folks covering regents just do that?) might have given the interview to SF Chron on behalf of regents and UCOP as a way to pre-empt any further discussion of the item in June or in advance of July meeting- or, he may be wrong about waiting til July. Hard to imagine it does not come up at June regents session esp in public comments: see below 
{We add in here--UCOP's Drake seems to be silent on all things UC right now. The physician UC prez silent on this new UC vaccine policy as any interview item with Drake. Ortiz Oakley does the interview on vaccine policy at UC but the article does not include mention of CA community colleges vaccine policy. The chair of the UC  regents Perez is in his final month of being chair and the Dignity Health -UC agreements come up as an agenda item, see below - its Pride month and there is an LGBTQ and Women's Health component to that  matter for the UC Regents and it is an issue the chair acknowledges is important to him as detailed here in prior posts.}

see

https://regents.universityofcalifornia.edu/meetings/agendas/june211.html


Date: June 23, 2021

Time: 9:30 a.m.

Location: Teleconference Meeting Conducted in Accordance with Paragraph 3 of Governor Newsom’s Executive Order N-29-20
--when are the regents going to be meeting -not on zoom- but at UC locations in person again , btw?

Agenda – Open Session

Public Comment Period

___

HEALTH SERVICES COMMITTEE

Date: June 23, 2021

Time: 10:00 a.m.

Agenda – Open Session

Action: Approval of the Minutes of the Meeting of April 6, 2021

H1 Discussion: Update from the Executive Vice President of UC Health

H2 Action Item Consent Agenda:

A. Approval for Participation in a Cancer Care Joint Venture with a Bay Area Health System, San Francisco Campus

B. Participation in a Joint Venture to Develop a Medical Office Building in Fremont, California, San Francisco Campus

H3 Action: Proposed Request for the UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland Master Facilities Plan Phase 2 Including New Hospital Pavilion, San Francisco Campus

H4 Discussion Item Speaker Series – Searching for the Cure: A Clinical Trial of CRISPR Technology in Sickle Cell Disease, Berkeley, Los Angeles, and San Francisco Campuses

H5 Discussion Item Community Benefit and Impact, UC Health

____

Agenda – Closed Session

Action: Approval of the Minutes of the Meeting of April 6, 2021

H6(X) Information: UC Health Litigation Update

____

GOVERNANCE COMMITTEE

Date: June 23, 2021

Time: 1:00 p.m.

Agenda – Closed Session

G1(X) Discussion Item: Appointment of and Compensation for Senior Vice President – External Relations and Communications, Office of the President

____

Agenda – Open Session

G1 Action Item  Approval of Appointment of and Compensation for Senior Vice President – External Relations and Communications, Office of the President as Discussed in Closed Session
_____

Full Board

Date: June 23, 2021

Time: 1:20 p.m.

Agenda – Open Session

Remarks of the Chair of the Board

Remarks of the President of the University

Remarks of the Chair of the Academic Senate

Committee Reports Including Approvals of Recommendations from Committees: Governance Committee

B1 Action: Adoption of Regents Policy on Affiliations with Healthcare Organizations that Have Adopted Policy-Based Restrictions on Care

____

On Covid 19 and UC - there appears to be a change : UC now is not waiting for FDA and is now instituting a mandate on Covid 19 vaccination and requiring  masks for employees in certain situations:

"An update on the voluntary return to UC Berkeley’s campus"
https://news.berkeley.edu/2021/06/11/an-update-on-the-voluntary-return-to-uc-berkeleys-campus/

This means that there could be different rules that apply in the workplace than those that apply in your personal life, as has been the case throughout the pandemic.

Cal/OSHA is working to revise its regulations, but, for now, face coverings will still be required at all times while working indoors unless you are alone in an enclosed office or room.

and also see:
"University of California COVID-19 vaccine mandate update""Those with approved exemptions or accommodations may return to campus with the requirement that they remain masked in all public settings and comply with the campus testing plan, which at a minimum will be weekly. Employees who choose not to be vaccinated, and have no approved exemption, cannot work on campus."
...
"If you are not vaccinated, or do not upload your vaccination information, you will need to get tested weekly per Cal/OSHA regulations."..

"If you received the vaccine at an off-campus vaccination site, you will need to upload a record of your vaccination to the secure eTang portal as soon as you have received your last dose and have a complete vaccination card."... 

- similar changes announced at UCLA.

Thursday, June 10, 2021

UC in it: "Universities are centers for teaching, research, and community. But that broader social mission is exactly why universities shouldn’t go off and form a patent-holding company that is designed to operate similarly to a patent troll. " And other things.

 Electronic Frontier Foundation has this piece out:

"15 Universities Have Formed A Company That Looks A Lot Like A Patent Troll"
https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2021/06/15-universities-have-formed-company-looks-lot-patent-troll
it involves:
The fifteen members of the University Technology Licensing Program are expected to be: 

    Brown University
    California Institute of Technology (Caltech)
    Columbia University
    Cornell University
    Harvard University
    Northwestern University
    Princeton University
    State University of New York at Binghamton
    University of California, Berkeley
    University of California, Los Angeles 
    University of Illinois
    University of Michigan
    University of Pennsylvania
    University of Southern California
    Yale University
__
"UC Berkeley should reconsider its proposed student housing plans"
https://www.dailycal.org/2021/06/08/uc-berkeley-should-reconsider-its-proposed-student-housing-plans-at-peoples-park-1921-walnut-st/
__
"Berkeley Launched Graduate Fellowship Socially Minded Architecture and Planning
Design Degrees for Social Justice Berkeley’s College of Environmental Design launches new pilot graduate fellowship program providing free tuition to students pursuing social justice-oriented careers."
https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2021/06/10/berkeley-launches-graduate-fellowship-socially-minded-architecture-and-planning
includes:
"Chakrabarti said the commitment to work in social justice-related roles after graduating is nonbinding, and the program will not include a verification mechanism. But he said he is not worried about students following through.“We know our students, and this is what most of them want to do regardless of this program,” Chakrabarti said."
__
"Instead of UC Berkeley Changemaker program, support Save Mills, UC Mills campaigns"
https://www.dailycal.org/2021/04/15/instead-of-uc-berkeley-changemaker-program-support-save-mills-uc-mills-campaigns/

apparently this gen counsel from Mills has now become gen counsel for LBNL: 
https://newscenter.lbl.gov/2021/05/21/therese-leone-chief-laboratory-counsel/
__
"COVID lab leak theory: Berkeley scientist on need for answers"
https://www.mercurynews.com/2021/06/06/covid-lab-leak-theory-why-berkeley-scientist-wants-answers/
__
this could have impact on Fall return to campuses:
"Significant and Sustained Drop in Teen and Adult Immunization Rates During Pandemic, Study Shows - 26 million doses of CDC-recommended vaccines were missed in 2020 - Non-influenza vaccine claims dropped up to 40% from the same period in 2019"

and UCSD had: "COVID-19 pandemic interrupted delivery of key health services for children and adolescents, including HPV vaccination for cancer prevention"
__
JnJCashkindaDay for some:

Wednesday, June 9, 2021

Former Gov Jerry 'Brown called ...into a CA Sen. Ed Comm. hearing to support a bill giving Leg. authority to the California-China Climate Institute at UC that the former Gov. launched in 2019 after leaving office and still leads.' Says he only receives psychic rewards as faculty pay -and on whether he "prefers to be called "professor" or "governor" these days."

In his comments he starts off by noting he is not being paid as a UC professor and that he is only receiving psychic income at UC as a quote...

Does he have a professor title? Apparently a visiting professor title.

["Jerry Brown, chair of the California-China Climate Institute, who was appointed a visiting professor at UC Berkeley in July"
https://news.berkeley.edu/2019/09/23/uc-berkeley-former-gov-jerry-brown-partner-with-china-to-spur-climate-action/
 that has morphed into a chair title  and sorta director it seems
"Brown will act as visiting director at U.C. Berkeley’s College of Natural Resources and Berkeley Law School as well as serving as California director of the institute"
https://thehill.com/policy/energy-environment/448304-jerry-brown-to-run-new-california-china-climate-policy-institute
--but even that is a director title that's more figure head -- than the headaches that come with  'principal investigator' or any 'fiduciary director level role' w/ more work and- at least used to be-gravitas that came with that additional work. At one UC Regents meeting when he was president of the UC Regents in his second term, he told the regents that topics like academic freedom were too difficult to discuss- like 'angels dancing on the head of a pin' was his metaphor... Then there were those quotes from his conversation with then Chancellor Dirks... and the psychic rewards compensation quotes of the seventies and so much more in the Brown UC history to consider. Along with, as covered here earlier, the pol trend of Davis, Granholm, Napolitano, Brown creating these post-gubernatorial perches/niches at Cal for themselves...]

"'I miss all of you': Jerry Brown calls into Capitol hearings"
https://www.politico.com/states/california/whiteboard/2021/06/09/i-miss-all-of-you-jerry-brown-calls-into-capitol-hearings-1385639
includes:
SACRAMENTO — Former Gov. Jerry Brown is emerging in Capitol legislative hearings as a concerned citizen.

Brown called Wednesday morning into a Senate Education Committee hearing to support a bill giving legislative authority to the California-China Climate Institute at the University of California that the former governor launched in 2019 after leaving office and still leads.

That came a day after Brown joined a Zoom meeting with the California Jewish Caucus to discuss "the future of our state."

Brown surprised lawmakers Wednesday by dialing in to push for the bill from his ranch in rural Colusa County, a place he said he worries he will have to leave because of wildfire threats.

"We're experiencing the driest weather, the creeks are drying up," he said. "We're looking at real fire danger."

Having a former governor call into a legislative hearing proved to be an awkward setup. Senate Education Chair Connie Leyva (D-Chino) struggled to navigate the regular time limitations.

"We're giving you a little deference because you are our former governor, we wouldn't normally allow that," Leyva said, as Brown spoke out of turn.

Sen. Steve Glazer (D-Orinda), a former longtime adviser to Brown, asked if his old boss prefers to be called "professor" or "governor" these days. Brown drew some laughs given the trying year Gov. Gavin Newsom is having amid the pandemic and recall

"That question answers itself. I'd like to be 'governor,'" Brown said. "Though I'm glad not to be there now." ...- see article in full
AB 39 the UC China initiative mentioned above comes up at the 4:00 minute mark here in this video - here:
https://www.senate.ca.gov/media/senate-education-committee-20210609/video
with Brown's comment in the public comment session immediately after presentation of that item at around the 7:30 mark. Brown was the only one of two total speakers in support, many speakers calling in to it in opposition. Human rights specifically on the plight of the Uyghur Muslims of Xinjiang, China comes up throughout. Brown then gives further comments later at 17:20 timemark as well, and at the 24 minute mark he discusses the source of private funding from Hewlett, Bloomberg among others; his view of his term 'planetary realism' and at the 29 minute mark with further comments 36 minute mark from him where he says he is raising millions of dollars on the project and says it will flow as support for students.
AB 251 admission by exception and Varsity Blues history comes up at the 38 minute mark

Also, University of California and the SCA5 initiative for creation of an additional UC student regent position comes up in the 48:00 minute mark where some UC student leaders also testify.

you can also listen to an audio only version here:
https://www.senate.ca.gov/media/senate-education-committee-20210609/audio

archived at :https://www.senate.ca.gov/media-archive
__
Also now there's :
"Jerry from Colusa on Line 1"
https://www.politico.com/newsletters/california-playbook-pm/2021/06/09/jerry-from-colusa-on-line-1-493190
--in this add'l piece on it Politico still fails to mention many of the other quotes in Brown's call like e.g. the discussion of human rights abuses, funding and faculty pay that also came up in the discussion. Instead they cover only this:
"The former governor has emerged in Capitol hearings as a concerned citizen. He called into a Senate Education Committee hearing this morning to support a bill to solidify the California-China Climate Institute at the University of California, a pet project he launched after leaving office in 2019. Yesterday, he joined a Zoom meeting with the California Jewish Caucus to discuss "the future of our state."

Brown surprised lawmakers by dialing in from his ranch in rural Colusa County, a place he worries he'll have to leave because of wildfire threats. "We're experiencing the driest weather, the creeks are drying up," he said. "We're looking at real fire danger."

Having a former governor call into legislative hearings is proving to be an awkward setup. Senate Education Chair Connie Leyva (D-Chino) struggled to navigate the regular time limitations.

"We're giving you a little deference because you are our former governor, we wouldn't normally allow that," Leyva said, as Brown spoke out of turn.

Sen. Steve Glazer (D-Orinda), a former longtime adviser to Brown, asked if his old boss prefers to be called "professor" or "governor" these days. Brown drew some laughs given the trying year Gov. Gavin Newsom is having amid the pandemic and recall. "That question answers itself. I'd like to be 'governor,'" Brown said. "Though I'm glad not to be there now."

Sen. Brian Dahle (R-Bieber) voted against Brown's bill, which, nonetheless, passed committee today. But the fellow North State resident expressed gratitude to Brown and took a jab at Newsom. “I miss you. I miss the ability to be able to communicate with you. We have not had that with this administration as Republicans as much,” Dahle said.

Brown extended an invite to his ranch to lawmakers as he wrapped up. "I miss all of you, come by some time," he said.

HAPPY WEDNESDAY AFTERNOON!" 


adding in here also that he also addressed Calbright a few weeks ago:
"Former Gov. Jerry Brown defends Calbright College
Brown: California’s online-only community college deserves a full chance"
https://edsource.org/2021/former-gov-jerry-brown-defends-calbright-embattled-online-college/655472
includes:
..."He still sees the college as the public solution to predatory for-profit institutions that targeted adult and low-income workers in the state to pursue degrees and credentials, sometimes at the cost of excessive student loans.

“The concept of Calbright is more relevant than ever,” said Brown, 83 who retired in 2019 after ending a second stint as the state’s Democratic governor.   “There’s more money now in higher education than ever before, so it’s not a money question. It’s the concept. Could the for-profit online colleges receive a public option? Could they face some competition from a public option, which Calbright represents? It’s a very attractive alternative for working people, not the fancy elites, but people who are struggling to improve their lot in life by upgrading their skills and doing so in a way that is affordable.”"..."Calbright, which is free to students, is a self-paced alternative to traditional colleges intended to serve adults between the ages of 25 and 34. The college offers a competency-based education model, which assesses students based on the skills they learn and not the amount of time spent in class.

Calbright faces an uphill fight since many in the Legislature have lined up against it and view the state audit as ammunition to eliminate the institution. Assembly Bill 1432, from Assemblymembers Evan Low, D-San Jose and Jose Medina, D-Riverside would eliminate the college by the end of 2022-23 and passed unanimously in that chamber. The Senate Education Committee will now consider the bill, and its chair, Sen. Connie Leyva, D-Chino, said she will fight for its survival."..."The frequently criticized college has stumbled since opening to students in October 2019. A total of 904 people enrolled in Calbright at one point or another, according to a recent state audit that criticized the college’s former leadership for failing to provide students with training and overpaying some executives."..."Of the 904 students, 384 dropped out, 87 were inactive for at least 90 days, and only 12 students received a certificate in the first year. According to the college, 41 certificates have been awarded as of the end of March."..."Brown does believe Calbright aligns with Newsom’s and the state’s goal to use technology to empower the people.

“Calbright is all about equity,” he said.

And without the college, the only people who will be hurt “will be low-income Californians that will lose an opportunity that they can find in no other way unless they pay a handsome fee to a corporate vendor,” Brown said, referring to the for-profit colleges."

We Could Be Royal(ties) - and, College Athletes Compensation in Higher Ed Sports, and UC research and student labor, more.

 "Will College Athletes Make Money? Here’s Where the Debate Stands. - The New York Times

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/06/09/sports/ncaa-college-athlete-name-image-likeness.html

US Congressional hearing on NCAA players’ compensation for name, image and likeness (runs 3 hrs+)
watch it or read transcript of it here:
https://www.c-span.org/video/?512377-1/ncaa-officials-coaches-testify-college-athlete-compensation&live
Description:
" June 9, 2021
NCAA Officials and Coaches Testify on College Athlete Compensation
The Senate Commerce Committee held a hearing to examine legislative proposals that would compensate college athletes. Witnesses include NCAA President Mark Emmert and Gonzaga University men’s basketball coach Mark Few."
__
"UCLA Turns Up Heat On Under Armour"
https://www.bizjournals.com/baltimore/news/2021/06/04/ucla-turns-up-heat-on-under-armour.html
and,
http://uclafacultyassociation.blogspot.com/2021/06/the-under-armour-lawsuit-continues.html
-there's also a UC Berkeley angle on it that we posted about back when:
https://cloudminder.blogspot.com/2020/08/the-costs-of-higher-ed-more.html
__

Irish president: ‘market-driven’ universities face ‘ruination’
Michael Higgins warns campuses ‘have suffered attrition of range and depth, loss of interdisciplinary exchange, leading in too many cases to a degradation of the very scholarship and teaching for which they were established’
https://www.timeshighereducation.com/news/irish-president-market-driven-universities-face-ruination
includes:
“a stark warning that the ‘ruination’ of the university tradition is ‘at hand,’ w/scholarship & teaching threatened by both authoritarian politicians & subservience to the ‘utilitarian reductionism’ of market ideology.”
--
will Biden, during his trip there,  talk Brexit impact on UK higher ed etc? or about higher ed at all across the pond and in relation to US higher ed?
https://www.cnn.com/2021/06/09/politics/joe-biden-leaves-for-international-trip/index.html
btw one could say a disconnect with CA, a persona view of herself as more of a DC pol? caused her to flub her answer:
https://www.npr.org/2021/06/08/1004504140/harris-tries-to-turn-the-focus-to-migration-but-gets-bogged-down-in-border-quest
 - she could have said right off 'I am from a border state'
but she didn't -maybe b/c being from CA does not come front of mind to her and corp Dem in CA only talk about it through lens of corp gains from programs DACA etc?
btw, more on the obvious pol disconnect and a trip to read this Cal piece, where a former DiFi staffer spun as change from DiFi: https://news.berkeley.edu/2021/05/14/in-a-changing-california-feinsteins-popularity-is-on-the-wane-poll-finds/
__
on UK higher Ed,
Check out Remaking the U twitter feed on how EU profs not so keen to move to UK higher ed jobs :
"post-Brexit Britain's "Global Talent" visa route for academics so far yields a total of  . . .46 EU candidates https://bit.ly/3pCqNDX "
__
at Remaking the U they also have this guest piece:
 "A Public Response to the UCR Chancellor's Invitation to Join the Campus Safety Workgroup"
http://utotherescue.blogspot.com/2021/06/a-public-response-to-ucr-chancellors.html
__
"UCR Alumna’s lawsuit dismissed by the court but copyright claim expected to go to trial in 2022"
https://www.highlandernews.org/82726/alumnas-lawsuit-dismissed-by-the-court-but-copyright-claim-expected-to-go-to-trial-in-2022/
earlier coverage on it there:
"UCR professor named in lawsuit alleging fraud, copyright infringement and emotional distress"
https://www.highlandernews.org/75769/ucr-professor-named-in-lawsuit-alleging-fraud-copyright-infringement-and-emotional-distress/
"The students behind Guardian Princesses"
https://www.highlandernews.org/23726/students-behind-guardian-princesses/
__
Even more on things royal and kids books-- first, in the UCSB area at Cottage a Californian now eighth in line to the British throne:
https://www.npr.org/2021/06/07/1003975034/why-meghan-and-harrys-daughter-is-named-lilibet
and 
"Meghan Markle Included Daughter Lili in Her New Children's Book! See the Sweet Nod
Meghan previously revealed that the book blossomed from a Father's Day poem she wrote for her husband"
https://people.com/royals/meghan-markle-releases-childrens-book-the-bench/

also gets this review in some circles:
"Meghan Markle has written a children’s book. It’s awful.
The Bench apparently began as a message to Harry. It should have stayed between them"
https://www.irishtimes.com/culture/books/meghan-markle-has-written-a-children-s-book-it-s-awful-1.4588508
early on one of the Duchess' patronages involved higher ed...

-heck, maybe a UC Regent? There's two vacancies right now and experience in public higher ed does not seem to matter...and 'losing the plot' is a given.

Tuesday, June 8, 2021

On Cal's 'Nobel NFT Auction' Still Unknown Outcome; UC Berkeley-Mills College Takeover Spin; Title IX and Double Standards Questions Abound; Drake's Silence on UC News Continues.

 Still no word for UC Berkeley on how much money or crypto the auction made as a fundraising effort on this:

https://news.berkeley.edu/story_jump/uc-berkeleys-nobel-nft-auction-set-for-noon-pdt-on-june-7/
- the date was moved on June 3 from June 3 to June 7th.
and the article has this section:
..." an NFT of a collage of images by the American digital artist known as Beeple sold for $69.4 million. On Foundation, former computer intelligence consultant Edward Snowden sold an NFT for $7 million in support of the Freedom of the Press Foundation, and New York Times journalist Kevin Roose raised nearly $1 million from the sale of an article about minting an NFT."...
--so $70 million or $7 million or $1 million
What did UC Berkeley make yesterday on it? Why isn't Lyons saying- since it was an initiative he touted?
--oh this update: it made $50,000.- in a last minute pooled bid...
https://news.berkeley.edu/2021/06/08/first-ever-auction-of-nft-based-on-nobel-prize-nets-uc-berkeley-50000/
--
Lyons has moved on to talking about Mills College and UC Berkeley like this in a Cal alumni magazine:
"Mills College Closes, but Opens Its Doors to Berkeley Students
A new solution to Cal’s housing and classroom shortage"
https://alumni.berkeley.edu/california-magazine/summer-2021/mills-college-opens-doors-to-cal-studentsThe academic experience will be cozier, but otherwise similar, with an even more state-of-the-art Berkeley Changemaker curriculum,” said Richard Lyons, Berkeley’s chief innovation and entrepreneurship officer. Launched in 2020, Berkeley Changemaker is described as “a way to codify an essential part of what UC Berkeley has always stood for” with a curriculum that “activates undergraduates’ passions and helps them develop a sharper sense of who they want to be and how to make that happen.”

Said Lyons, “What excites me most about this program is how it points the way to our future. For example, as UC Berkeley gets larger, my sense is that integrated first-year programming like this will become more and more valuable. And having first-year programming like that of Berkeley Changemaker that aligns with values that so sharply distinguish Berkeley—values like question the status quo and serve the greater good—feels like the right direction as well.”
-that article makes no mention of the fact that the leadership of Mills college have now received 'no confidence votes' from the Mills community and Mills alumni (some of whom are also Cal or UC alumni as well) And those opposing the closure of Mills are communicating to UC Regents that they should not vote on anything binding in any UC-Mills agreements because the Mills community is still unsettled on the closing terms of their campus etc.- see last UC Regents meeting in May public comments sessions for some examples of it.

--

"A Double Standard at Stanford?"
https://academeblog.org/2021/06/02/a-double-standard-at-stanford/So, apparently a call by hundreds of Stanford students, faculty, and alums to look into the coordinated social media campaign of a conservative political organization on campus that led to a young alum’s loss of job and perhaps her career in journalism can be ignored, one assumes in light of the university’s alleged commitment to free speech (see here), but a single satiric email from an individual law student is enough not only to prompt an inquiry but to hold up and perhaps block that student’s graduation.

Talk about double standards!  It’s free speech for the SCR to run a despicable social media campaign aimed at getting a recent graduate with whom they disagree fired from her job, but it’s not free speech to mock ..."

It also points to: https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2021/06/federalist-society-stanford.html
and questions about current composition of SCOTUS

In tandem with any discussion of that, one must read in full- (but it might not be just the 'new generation' who holds the sentiment):
"The Tiger Mom and the Hornet’s Nest For two decades, Amy Chua and Jed Rubenfeld were Yale Law power brokers. A new generation wants to see them exiled."
https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2021/06/amy-chua-jed-rubenfeld-yale-law.html
includes:
..."And she had heard about Chua’s make-or-break reputation for getting clerkships — that she would shepherd them through the process, including how to sell themselves and to whom, and that judges looked to her for her frank takes on the students. Fully half of Yale’s law-school classes clerk, but not all clerkships are created equal. So-called feeder judges on federal circuit courts are most prized because they provide the clearest pipeline to clerking on the Supreme Court, which is not only prestigious but lucrative: The typical signing bonus for such a clerk at a law firm is $400,000, not counting the six-figure starting salary. Six of the nine current justices clerked on the Court themselves. The student did not shrink from Rubenfeld’s touch."...
https://abovethelaw.com/2021/06/amy-chua-keeps-inviting-reporters-to-her-home-as-if-thats-not-exactly-how-she-got-into-this-mess/?rf=1

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/06/07/us/amy-chua-yale-law.html

https://www.businessinsider.com/amy-chua-tiger-mom-yale-law-ban-suspension-2021-5

https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/2021/06/09/anatomy-an-elite-law-school-quasi-scandal/

https://yaledailynews.com/blog/2021/04/07/law-professor-amy-chua-loses-small-group-following-allegations-of-parties-misconduct/

https://www.chronicle.com/article/a-yale-law-prof-was-disciplined-for-holding-dinner-parties-theres-more-to-the-story
__

"No Clear Answers
Professors and students at UNC Chapel Hill demand to know why journalist Nikole Hannah-Jones was not offered tenure. The university and its governing board still aren't saying much at all."
https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2021/05/21/professors-students-unc-chapel-hill-demand-transparency-about-journalists-tenure-bid
its a chilling effect for those observing it (potential and current appplicant pools for other positions there etc.) as well, not just what Jones is experiencing-- here is the latest:
https://cen.acs.org/education/Nikole-Hannah-Jones-tenure-dispute-causes-a-chemist-to-withdraw-from-UNC-faculty-search/99/web/2021/06
https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2021/06/05/unc-faculty-slam-decision-not-grant-tenure-nikole-hannah-jones/7560654002/
https://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/education/article251953008.html

- Is there a 'Title IX policy covered' aspect/eligibility in such above cases?
__
Title IX at CSU and 
"Academic Freedom or Academic Abuse?
Students say a film professor at Sonoma State hides behind faculty rights while violating their rights in the classroom. The details suggest the case is complicated."
https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2021/06/01/academic-freedom-or-academic-abuse-sonoma-state

__
"Thoughts From the Public on Title IX
On the first of five days of comment hearings, speakers advocated for and against changes to the Title IX regulations made by former secretary of education Betsy DeVos"
https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2021/06/08/department-education-begins-title-ix-public-hearings
includes:
..."The Department of Education began five days of public hearings Monday, during which it expects to hear from 600 individuals about how it can improve Title IX enforcement, following a directive from President Biden to re-examine the controversial regulations put in place by the Trump administration.

As of last Friday, over 700 people had registered to comment for 600 confirmed slots in virtual hearings, during which the department will not respond to what is said. The department had also received 15,000 written comments, which will continue to be accepted throughout the duration of the hearings."...
https://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/docs/titleix-publichearing.pdf
"Written comments must be received ... by 5:00 p.m. Eastern time on June 11, 2021, and include the subject line “Written Comment: Title IX Public Hearing (topic of the comment).”  The email may include " see full announcement in link for the details.
Dates and Times:  The public hearing will be held on the following dates and times:  
June 7, 2021, from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Eastern time 
June 8, 2021, from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Eastern time
 June 9, 2021, from 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., Eastern time 
June 10, 2021, from 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., Eastern time 
June 11, 2021, from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Eastern time
____ UCOPs Drake made an appearance at UC Irvine to have a part of street named after him or something like that as news out of UCOP - he is silent on other UC matters right now...
Drake has taken up discussing non UC and non CA cases in headlines, sometimes just offering gen platitudes, sometimes more. Yet, he remains silent about Nicole Hannah Jones UNC hiring issues,1619 criticisms etc.. Early into his UCOP presidency he gave an interview to and high praise of UC Irvine based so called UC systemwide free speech center, a center which has also remained silent on Jones-1619-UNC -they also have NHJ's fellow NYT staff colleague, who has been deeply critical of Jones and her 1619 project,  sitting on their UC systemwide FSM advisory board. That advisory board has undergone some major changes in its composition, several exits, since its creation. More on all this ( and a  bit of necessary but missing championing of the St Aug history example so frequently excluded in discussion or presentation of such projects) in a later post.

__
then there's an email from Chancellor CChrist that sounds out of touch:
https://www.dailycal.org/2021/06/03/uc-berkeley-details-plans-for-in-person-graduation-for-class-of-2020/Many of you expressed sadness that the Class of 2021 had the opportunity to process in person and thought we had forgotten you,” the email reads. “Nothing could be further from the truth.”

--if that's the impression it is probably because the outreach to the alumni was bad...you're out of touch even with the alumni who graduated just last year?

Friday, June 4, 2021

UC Still Playing Around With That?and UC Research in big NFL News. Its an origin points of present troubles story.

 some significant updates added in below:

adding in here at the top:
https://www.cnn.com/2021/06/04/politics/christopher-wray-cyberattacks-9-11/index.html
--higher ed has been resistant to some of Wray's other concerns about higher ed practices on security as well, so its an important note

In US news today there has been a fair amount of coverage of:

"White House warns companies to step up cybersecurity: 'We can't do it alone'"
https://www.reuters.com/technology/white-house-warns-companies-step-up-cybersecurity-2021-06-03/

-- and if you, like us, continue to wander into the land of thinking about when Birgeneau said UC is really a federal university or UC Berkeley is a federal university etc while reading :
"Biden signs executive order to improve federal cybersecurity" ... 
https://www.nytimes.com/2021/05/12/us/politics/biden-cybersecurity-executive-order.html
https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/biden-executive-order-cybersecurity/2021/05/12/9269e932-acd5-11eb-acd3-24b44a57093a_story.html
...- who knows where Biden feels the responsibility falls when these issues involve UC....(or, it just falls nowhere and just 'ubiquitousness of it' spins and sighs all around)??
In the coverage today the reporters and anchors and experts have repeatedly stated that various cryptocurrencies have been used to pay for the breaches etc.  
And UC is still very delayed in fully acknowledging how UC alumni and former UC employees are also impacted by the latest Accelion events
https://ucnet.universityofcalifornia.edu/news/2021/03/uc-part-of-nationwide-cyber-attack.html
And UC Berkeley still has a far 'below the fold'  on its homepage in small font barely mentioning those events or who it might impact.
--
With the above in mind --
as we looked to see how the first announcement of June 3rd went :
UC Berkeley's Nobel NFT auction set for noon PDT on June 3 ...
https://news.berkeley.edu › story_jump › uc-berkeleys-...
1 day ago —" The NFT for Jim Allison's Nobel Prize-winning invention was minted on May 27 and will go up for auction June 3 on Foundation."

but now come to find a new date of June 7th has suddenly replaced that content. Why?
see now:
"UC Berkeley’s Nobel NFT auction set for noon PDT on June 7"
https://news.berkeley.edu/story_jump/uc-berkeleys-nobel-nft-auction-set-for-noon-pdt-on-june-7/
-- On the day of the auction they changed the info and date on June 3rd and replaced it with the date of June 7th, why?
In the middle of that article one of the pictures (NFT design...) notes the June 3rd date still and refers to it in the caption:
"The NFT for Jim Allison’s Nobel Prize-winning invention was minted on May 27 and will go up for auction June 3 on Foundation. (NFT design...)thumbnail of NFT"

-- of important note in this is that now they state:
"A first-of-its-kind NFT containing the detailed scientific findings behind a Nobel Prize-winning invention — cancer immunotherapy — will go up for auction at 12 noon PDT on Monday, June 7, on Foundation, a platform on the Ethereum blockchain.

The reserve price will be 4 ETH (Ether) — a reference to immunotherapy being the fourth pillar of cancer treatment — the equivalent of about $10,000. Proceeds from the NFT, minted last week by the University of California, Berkeley, will go toward research and education and offsetting the carbon footprint of minting and auctioning the NFT.

This is the first university-issued NFT based on an invention — in this case, the invention of cancer immunotherapy stemming from world-changing research that was recognized with a 2018 Nobel prize.

The 24-hour auction extends from noon on June 7 through noon on Tuesday, June 8. A bid received within the last 15 minutes of the auction will extend the auction by another 15 minutes. Bidders must have an Ethereum wallet containing ETH cryptocurrency. One ETH is currently valued at about $2,500."

--UCOP, President Drake and all  of the UC chancellors  really owe an explanation to UC community and those affected by UC Accellion events for why UC campuses are being allowed to do crytocurrency schemes  and also provide real assurances in light of recent events.
____
"UC President Michael Drake extends lift on vacation accrual maximum for eligible staff"
https://www.dailycal.org/2021/06/01/uc-president-michael-drake-extends-lift-on-vacation-accrual-maximum-for-eligible-staff/
in it UCOP's Drake says its easy to just update UCPATH on all that...

Also this latest:
"University of California Regents Not Liable in Time-Keeping Suit "
https://www.shrm.org/resourcesandtools/legal-and-compliance/state-and-local-updates/pages/university-of-california-regents-escape-liability-in-time-keeping-suit.aspx
includes:
"Wage Order No. 4, which is at issue in this case, covers professional, technical, clerical, mechanical and similar occupations and applies to "political subdivisions" of the state.

Among other things, Wage Order No. 4 includes a minimum-wage section, which requires employers to pay their employees at least the designated hourly rate "for all hours worked." The plaintiff argued that this portion of Wage Order No. 4 applied to the regents, while the regents argued that it did not.

The California Constitution grants the regents "full powers of organization and government" and grants them "general immunity from legislative regulation," the court observed.

Although there are a few very narrow exceptions to this general immunity, courts have consistently held that the regents are exempt from statutes regulating the wages and benefits of employees and other workers, including those pertaining to prevailing wages and overtime pay, on the ground those matters are internal affairs of the university that do not come within any of the narrow exceptions, the appeals court said.

The court noted that the University of California is not a political subdivision of the state and does not otherwise fall within the definition of a public employer under Wage Order No. 4. Instead, the court said, the university is a separate arm of state government that is given constitutional power to govern its own internal affairs, such as the terms on which it employs its workers.

The regents' time-keeping procedures did not come within any of the exceptions to the regents' constitutional immunity, the court concluded. The appeals court affirmed the dismissal of the action.

Gomez v. Regents of the University of California, Calif. Ct. App., No. D077181 (April 23, 2021).

Professional Pointer: Although the trial court held outright that state minimum-wage laws do not apply to the regents, the appeals court did not go that far. The court limited its decision to the facts of this case. The issue here was the way that the regents calculated hours worked rather than the hourly wage itself."
_______
Are you ready for some..Love Football 
but this has got to be better addressed

Since we've previously covered this issue including from perspectives of UC Davis world renowned Dr. on the subject 
"The diagnosis that rocked football" 
https://www.universityofcalifornia.edu/news/diagnosis-rocked-football
[and that scene from that movie where Will Smith plays him-- that scene in the office with his dean dept chair and others , think its the FAX scene-not to be missed by higher ed research policy analysts nor by Wray, who we started this post off with -good to watch that  movie scene again post-2016 for a map to some of how 'collective we' got to this point ;and as there are top news concerns for health of athletes highlighted e.g. in this year's French Open; and as there is a 'never post covid but vaccine available' corporate eagerness to return to normal play -but the old pre-covid problems remain and many covid questions still unanswered about when it will be fully covid enviro safe.]  

and other UCSF NFL Drs. on the subject in prior coverage...

"UC tackles concussions "
https://www.universityofcalifornia.edu/news/uc-tackles-concussions

and research funding issue and influences in other coverage:
2013- "Concussion Researchers Consulted With NFL Players' Lawyers | League of Denial: The NFL's Concussion Crisis | FRONTLINE | PBS | Official Site"
https://www.pbs.org/wgbh/frontline/article/concussion-researchers-consulted-with-nfl-players-lawyers/

2018- "UCSF-led Consortium to Receive $3.45 Million from NFL to Study Traumatic Brain Injury"
https://www.ucsf.edu/news/2018/11/412346/ucsf-led-consortium-receive-345-million-nfl-study-traumatic-brain-injury

"NFL donations to brain research benefit league-linked doctors, raise worries about influence on science"
https://www.espn.com/espn/otl/story/_/id/14711203/nfl-donations-brain-research-benefit-league-linked-doctors-raise-worries-influence-science-lines

"NFL health officials confronted NIH about researcher selection"
https://abc7news.com/sports/nfl-health-officials-confronted-nih-about-researcher-selection/1167191/

University of California research included in much of the coverage on ending the practice of 'race norming' concussion injuries in NFL players as part of a settlement agreement. Of course the injury and effects extend beyond just NFL or football and other sports , so see:
last year there was:
"‘Race Norming’ Blamed for Denying Payouts to Ex-NFL Players With Dementia
UCSF Psychologist Says ‘Brain Health’ Factors, Not Lower Benchmarks for Blacks, Should Be Used in Cognitive Testing"
https://www.ucsf.edu/news/2020/12/419426/race-norming-blamed-denying-payouts-ex-nfl-players-dementia

In February of this year there was:
"Clinicians fear NFL's concussion settlement program protocols discriminate against Black players
Data suggests race-based adjustments could have significant impact on payouts."
https://abcnews.go.com/Sports/clinicians-fear-nfls-concussion-settlement-program-protocols-discriminate/story?id=75646704
read in full in depth:
..."At the request of an attorney who represents several former NFL players, a neuropsychologist who has evaluated former NFL players under the concussion settlement program recently re-scored the results of cognitive tests from a group of 94 Black former players. The resulting dataset was shared exclusively with ABC News."...

also earlier:
https://abcnews.go.com/Health/chris-borlands-early-nfl-exit-avoiding-brain-damage/story?id=29705431

https://abc7news.com/concussions-nfl-concussion-study-lawrence-livermore-lab-berkeley/2965747/

--And now present day coverage of it:

"NFL abandons 'crude proxy' of race-norming in $1 billion concussion settlement"
https://www.sfchronicle.com/sports/49ers/article/NFL-abandons-crude-proxy-of-race-norming-in-1-16223812.php
..."Dr. Katherine Possin, a neurology professor at the UCSF Memory and Aging Center, called for the NFL to end the practice in December. Possin wrote a widely cited perspective in JAMA Neurology saying the use of race-norming was imprecise and perpetuated systemic racism in the way it was being used by the NFL. By assuming former Black players have a lower cognitive baseline, it has made it harder for those players to prove they have brain trauma and qualify for a settlement. Blacks’ scores on cognitive test were adjusted for their race, meaning they had to post lower scores than whites to receive a payout.

also there:
"Even milder concussions double dementia risk, UCSF study finds"
https://www.sfchronicle.com/nation/article/UCSF-study-finds-concussions-even-milder-ones-12892256.php
includes:
"Race-norming, as used in the concussion lawsuits, assumes Blacks have lower cognitive function because of societal factors such as access to health care, education and economic background. The practice dates back about 40 years ago when it was used to account for racial basis in aptitude tests that were part of federal job applications. It began in the medical field more than two decades ago, partly to prevent the overdiagnosis of cognitive disorders among Blacks. It was outlawed by the Civil Rights Act of 1991."
 --
"NFL families seek to end ‘race-norming’ in $1bn concussion settlement" -AP-Guardian
https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2021/may/14/nfl-race-norming-concussion-settlement
    Lawyers have battled over ‘race-norming’ in NFL dementia tests
    NFL algorithm assumes lower cognitive skills for Black players
--
"Accused of discrimination, NFL will revise concussion settlement standards" 
https://www.miamiherald.com/sports/college/football/article251855538.html
--
https://news.yahoo.com/news/nfl-race-based-formulas-interfering-235838740.html
--
"NFL accused of 'systemic racism' in handling Black ex-players' brain injuries"
https://thehill.com/regulation/court-battles/553482-nfl-accused-of-systemic-racism-in-handling-black-ex-players-brain
--
"Black N.F.L. Players Want New Advocate in Concussion Settlement - The New York Times"
https://www.nytimes.com/2021/03/17/sports/football/nfl-concussion-settlement-race-bias.html

BBC covers it like this w/ this headline:
"NFL: How race-based formulas are interfering with concussion lawsuits"
https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-57337296

(btw, wow on the amount of CBS  show/news coverage of the soon to retire Duke b-ball coach and almost no coverage of the above- and other tv networks with football contracts also hardly covering it...)