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Sunday, June 13, 2010

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Pay Some Attention: Return of UCOF 2

The UC Commission on the Future is having its fifth meeting tomorrow, June 14, for its second consideration of formal recommendations.  UCOP has performed a studio cut on the original material, which has the virtue of greater clarity.  Note in particular (page references are internal to the Meeting Materials):
  •  "Selected Working Group First Round Recommendations."    (p 20) 
We are told that the other First Round recommendations are not thus rejected, but won't be discussed June 14.  There is some lack of clarity here.
  • "Expanded recommendations" (p 68). These have been recently added by UCOP.
These new UCOP recommendations have not been reviewed by the Senate, and there has been some drama about this over the past week.  The upshot seems to be that "nothing will be decided at this meeting."
  • Senate Chair Harry Powell's summary of the Academic Senate's review of the UCOF First Round recommendations (p 102).
  • Proposed Commision Recommendation from the Academic Council  (p 109)
  • Council of Vice Chancellors (COVC) Recommendations to UCOF (p 113).
The main idea that has emerged from UCOP for managing UC downsizing is on-line instruction. See Tobias Higbie's analysis.

I offer a brief overview of the financial recommendations.

Catherine Cole explores some of the complications and potential conflicts of interest of the online iniative.


browlands said...

Here's what's happening at Cal:
Bain & Co. consultants' findings for re-structuring passed muster with the Chancellor (surprise!). "Operational Excellence" is busy building itself a Program Office, with a director and a head to be in the Chancellor's cabinet--creating a whole new layer of bureaucracy on campus. The Program Office will oversee implementation of eight initiatives headed by our own Coven of Vice Chancellors. A position called Organizational Change Communications Specialist 4 has been advertised (and filled?). Somehow I don't think our Change Specialist will have the charm of George Clooney in the recent film "Up in the Air," though they may have some of the same job duties.

JB said...

Here are some great cost savings ideas from Bain & Company.

Every department should buy the same model copier.

Centralize services to streamline the organization. No more academic departments with their own staff.

Redesign Information Technology to be more uniform. Use a standard PC model.

UCLA reader said...

Interesting statistic from the meeting materials: "Preliminary estimates are that current policies and practices of recovering indirect costs on non-federally funded research throughout the University of California are currently leading to the use of core-funds to subsidize this research in the range of more than $300 million per year."

UCLA reader said...

Here is another quote from the meeting materials: "Notwithstanding recent major increases in student fees, the University of California remains a significant value within the marketplace of leading universities. At least in the short run, there is significant room to increase tuition levels without significant negative impacts on projected enrollment or access for students from low-income families."

While the more desirable UC locations and programs could probably charge significantly more while maintaining enrollments, I don't think this is true for UC as a whole.

Aggregate societal demand for higher education may well decline in future years as well, due to both demographic and economic trends. For example there is ample evidence already that a college education is no longer the ticket to a well-paying job it once was, a factor which can reasonably be expected to exert downward pressure on future demand for UC admission, particularly at the less prestigious venues.

One senses that even the drafters of the meeting materials realize this, since they made sure to insert the "at least in the short run" qualifying language.

Put differently then, they seem to actually believe that perhaps in the long run we can't increase tuition without negative impacts on enrollments.

Unknown said...

well demand for UC remains strong as measured by applications -- AFTER a 32 percent fee increase:
only UC Riverside had a slight decline in 2010 applicants but still more demand than 2008

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