Discussion in 'Too Hot for Swamp Gas' started by wgbgator, Oct 6, 2022.
Out of curiosity, what were Trump’s good policies?
Read. Asked. Answered - see post 53. Man, people get excited if desantis gets mentioned…
Whatever. A well known racist was president of UF when I started and it didn't affect my education one teeny bit. Politicians, including major university presidents, are pretty akin to members of the world's oldest profession.
I went to UF for 7 years. My kids have a total of 3 UF degrees. We all have advanced degrees. I bet you $10 my two UF grads couldn't tell you who was president of UF when they were students. O'Connell was pres when I started but I have no idea after that.
Its a political fund raising job and I just don't really care.
However, I can name every single football and basketball coach from Ray Graves and Norm Sloan forward. I have priorities.
I got passed over for him?
Better yet, what were his policies at all?
That being said, do I pronounce this sas or sassy? This coming off Fuchs
I have to wonder if our Trumpian state legislature will cut funding to UF so that Sasse fails.
They can always look at their diplomas to see who the UF resident was when teh graduated.
Always liked Sasse. Would've rather seen him in the WH or in a cabinet postion.
Almost seems like sidelining a potential opponent.
He is 50 yrs old. Can easily be president for the next 15 yrs plus
Not so fast my friend, careful stereotyping people. I'm an R who finds those from philosophy and history backgrounds very appealing.
They let Carpetbagger Kat in the President's box?
He was playing in AA ball. This is the big leagues.
He’s an intolerant asshole who has no business holding this job.
So given his political record I am not at all enthusiastic about Sasse. however there are a couple reasons for hope:
First, the chair of the search committee is a guy named Rahul Patel, who is a former student of mine. i've sort of peripherally kept in touch with him in a very general sense since then, and our paths have crossed numerous times. We have quite a few mutual friends. Rahul is a UF lifer and loves the University. He was "student of the year" as an undergrad, also went to law school at UF (He could've gotten in anywhere else he wanted) and has been very instrumental in fundraising for both the university and the law school. I would guess Patel is politically conservative because he's on the board of trustees but he is definitely not a DeSantis bootlicker so I'm guessing he's probably in the non-cult GOP mode. Patel is also very very VERY smart. No matter what his politics, I firmly believe that Patel would not pick someone he thought was bad for UF or its reputation, and I also do not believe he would help pick and be super enthusiastic about an ideologue who he thought was going to substantially change the manner of public education. This is all an educated guess, maybe he's gone full MAGA in the last few years and I don't know it (plenty of other people have), but it would be very out of character.
Also, Sasse has a PhD from a prestigious university so he obviously knows how higher education functions. His tenure as a university president was at such a small school I'm not sure it counts for much, but you can't navigate the PhD process without an intimate understanding of how a big university works. So at least that's better than guys like Starr at Baylor and thrasher at FSU
My guess is they knew that they would never get a non-Republican past the other shills on the board of trustees and so they made a compromise with a guy that they thought would be good for UF and who would have conservative credibility but would also push back against DeSantis on matters of academic freedom and university control
I could be completely wrong, I'll probably end up being disappointed but I've got my fingers crossed and it's not a completely uneducated opinion.
After reading your post, that is exactly what came to mind
but not in regard to Ben Sasse (who is an excellent hire).
Thanks for the perspective and insight. It's appreciated, truly. Also, you taught at UF?
Occasionally as a guest lecturer or an adjunct, nothing to write home about.
My ex has a PhD from UF and was a tenured professor (not at UF) and her father was a tenured professor there. To me the most important quality as a university president is understanding the nuances of how a university works. that's why I am frequently skeptical when people with no educational background get appointed to university president positions. People like to say it's all gladhanding and fundraising, but that really isn't true. Faculty management is a huge part of it, and a huge part of maintaining university prestige. If you don't understand how faculty get to where they get and how much work goes into it, and how many of them are oddballs and malignant narcissists and how you have to manage them, then you're going to have a problem. To me understanding that is way more important than politics… The university is like an enormous ship, really moving it a few degrees in any direction is difficult. But you can F it up very quickly if you think it runs like a business or any other organization that you have ever been a part of.
How'd you like it? I've considered doing it (adjunct/guest lecture) in the future.
I really love teaching but it's a lot of work for very little reward. I've much more enjoyed the teaching I've done overseas, where they basically bring you in for a few weeks to teach your portion of whatever it is you're teaching, and then you leave. I also would never want to be a professor in a department. The politics of most departments means that often the people who care the least about research and teaching are the ones who ascend to department chair positions, and frankly everyone (including my ex, and she would agree with me) who manages to get tenure is a little bit of a lunatic. It's a bit like running an insane asylum full of very very smart patience. I honestly think nearly every full professor I've ever met (that's the highest rank you can attain after associate and assistant professor) is on the spectrum
EDIT: I should note that one of the department chairs in the journalism school who I've known forever, Tom Kelleher, goes completely against my description above an is a great guy – I would work for him in a heartbeat
I had no idea this was on the burner. It seems like it could be savvy pick, given
- He clearly has academic experience and is well credentialed.
- He is a conservative Republican in a conservatively governed state but he isn’t a MAGA type. He seems pretty principled and likely to reasonably defend the universities best interests from all sides.
Given his record during the Obama administration I don't think you could call him principled, but I have to hope as a reportedly smart guy that he has seen where unprincipled behavior has taken the republican party