Summer update

(I was away so long this time that I forgot my password…)

Yes, it’s that time of year to feel bad about not getting enough accomplished as time inexorably rushes towards the start of another academic year. This time, I really haven’t accomplished much over the summer. I’ve managed to help out a colleague on a project for which I’ll get no credit (not his fault; he probably won’t get much credit either). It may provide some nice student opportunities, if anyone cares. Continue reading

You lose a few, you lose a few

So, I was upset at yet another demand on my time not shared by others and called my Chair out on it. That didn’t go great. Unfortunately, I wasn’t thinking clearly enough to make any kind of cogent argument and ranted on various issues. He’s not the vindictive type, but I suppose I’ll lay low for a while. It’s not like he can take away resources I don’t have. Tip for any administrators who may be reading: overburden your highest performing faculty member of the past [many] years and say it’s a sign of respect. Ah well, what am I going to do, not sign my contract for next year?

Life on a silver platter

When I wrote this in my previous post:

After all, 6 times as many people who grow up in the top quartile by household income in the U.S. graduate from college as compared to those of us who are [sic; should have been “were”] bottom feeders in the bottom quartile.

I had been looking at data from the 1979-1982 birth cohort in the National Longitudinal Study of Youth from a couple years ago that indicated that 54% of children growing up in the top quartile of family income had graduated from college as opposed to 9% in the bottom quartile. Considerably later than my birth cohort, but more appropriate for recent trends. In any case, six times nine is fifty-four. Except that the true number may be even worse! Right on the cover of this just released report from those commies at the Pell Institute, they quote numbers of 73% and 8%! (The 2013 numbers they quote later in the report are actually 77% and 9%; I think the cover figure is for 2012.) Either way, it’s about a factor of 9. Although my institution skews to the high side of the income spectrum, at least I don’t see very many overprivileged rich snots – outside of the professorate anyway.