Update: Kim Olson, the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities (MnSCU) system’s chief marketing and communication officer, told me this evening that today’s announcement of a unanimous “no confidence” vote in MnSCU chancellor Steven Rosenstone by Winona State University faculty comes a bit out of the blue.

She wrote:

Although Chancellor Steven Rosenstone meets regularly with Inter Faculty Organization (IFO) leadership, we have not been formally contacted by any Winona faculty about a vote of “no confidence” or to discuss any concerns that would lead to a vote of this kind.  The WSU Faculty Association Senate is composed of approximately 28 faculty members (out of 18,000 MnSCU faculty and staff) on one of MnSCU’s 54 campuses. We’ve been in touch with the IFO’s state leadership and have been told it’s a local issue. News like this is always concerning, however, it will not distract from serving our students, their communities and the state of Minnesota.

According to a late-afternoon press release by Faculty Association President Darrell Downs, members voted unanimously, citing “a recurring pattern of secrecy in MnSCU decision making regarding the hiring of private consultants, questionable spending decisions by the System Office, and an unwillingness to incorporate greater student and faculty input into long term planning.”

Downs has been a public critic of Rosenstone’s plan to overhaul the way the system does business, saying it centralized power too much.

His announcement today states:

Faculty Senator, Bruce Svingen noted “Three years is too long to wait for the Chancellor to recognize that campus students, faculty, and staff need to be involved at the ground level of higher education decisions.”

It is the view of the Faculty Senate that WSU’s strength is in providing an excellent education to its students and serving its varied communities.  However pursuing a costly long-term planning agenda without sufficient public funding dedicated to that purpose and without fully transparent decision making unnecessarily jeopardizes this university.

WSU Faculty Association President, Darrell Downs, said “he had hoped that the Chancellor’s management style would provide more openness and more directly engage students and faculty in long term planning.”

This vote of “no confidence” in the leadership of the Chancellor sends a message to the Chancellor, as well as to the MnSCU Board of Trustees, that WSU’s distinctive mission in higher education is best preserved though open and fully transparent decision making led by students, faculty, and staff.

An American Indian student group at the University of Minnesota has sent President Eric Kaler a letter urging him to keep the Washington “Redskins” name and logo out of TCF Bank Stadium when the team plays the Vikings Nov. 2.

It says the stadium lease agreement gives the U the power to do so.

Among other things, it asks for increased security at a pregame protest in front of the stadium, as well as for Kaler to host a forum to discuss the concerns in the letter.

I’ll have more later, but for now, here’s the letter:


LinkedIn Tries College Rankings Social Networking Site Rates Schools by Which Produces Graduates With Most Desirable Jobs (The Wall Street Journal)

Ukrainian Students to Take Russians’ Places in U.S. Exchange Program Russia’s decision to cancel a longstanding high school exchange program with the United States has had one result that the Kremlin may not have anticipated: more slots open for students from Ukraine. (The New York Times)

Ending Higher Ed’s Tuition Addiction to Produce Teachers We Need If colleges want to reverse the declining number of teachers of color, create more STEM teachers, and calibrate teacher supply with district demand, then teacher preparation programs need to become less dependent on individuals’ tuition. (Washington Monthly)

The ethics of Hacking 101  Some experts say the academic community is not taking ethics seriously enough, and professors are not accepting responsibility for the potentially dangerous skills they are teaching. (The Washington Post)

Dems demand more regs on for-profit colleges Sens. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) and Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) touted the support of more than a dozen attorneys general for their Proprietary Education Oversight Coordination Improvement Act, which would allow the federal government to increase accountability standards for the colleges. (The Hill via NAICU)