Blaise Pascal, Penseé 347: “Man is but a reed, the most feeble thing in nature; but he is a thinking reed. The entire universe need not arm itself to crush him. A vapor, a drop of water suffices to kill him. But, if the universe were to crush him, man would still be more noble than that which killed him, because he knows that he dies and the advantage which the universe has over him; the universe knows nothing of this. All our dignity consists, then, in thought. By it we must elevate ourselves, and not by space and time which we cannot fill. Let us endeavor, then, to think well; this is the principle of morality.”

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

The Huron County Extract's Cultural Survey of Fresno State

The Huron County Extract’s Cultural Survey of Fresno State

Since the recently distributed cultural survey, which faculty were asked to complete, did not seem to speak to our situation or even to address teachers at a university, the Huron County Extract offers for the use of the Fresno State community its own much shorter survey, more specifically adapted to the needs of our campus. Please answer the following questions by circling the number which comes closest to your response, 1 being the most positive and 5 the least:

1. When I learned that the administration had $1.8 million dollars to spend down before the end of the year:
1.     I felt happy. I’ve always wanted three staplers and an office full of typing paper.
2.     I felt sympathetic to the administrators who didn’t want to be stuck with another $65 million carry-forward next year; man, that’s just embarrassing.
3.     I wondered why most of it wasn’t spent earlier in the year to increase the number of class sections offered.
4.     I felt wrathful that most of it wasn’t spent earlier in the year to increase the number of class sections offered.
5.     It dawned on me that this opened possibilities for department chairs to make money at the Cherry Auction.

2. When I learned that the Budget Task had been asked to make recommendations without knowing about the $65 million dollar carry-forward from last year I felt
1.     That it wasn’t any of their business anyway; their charge was only to look at the Academic Affairs budget;
2.     Admiration for the finesse of the administration. If you want to get rid of two schools, you just can’t let information like that out.
3.     That there actually was a “smoking gun,” despite assurances to the contrary.
4.     Swindled. Lied to. Deceived. But I’ll recover.
5.     So swindled, lied to, and deceived, that I will never trust this administration again.

3. When I hear people use words and phrases like “faculty transformational scholarship and research,” “rhetoricality,” “digication,” and “demonstrating the transformational effect from experience in utilizing various pedagogies,”
1.     I just get, like, all hot and excited, and I want to  . . .
2.     I think of adding an Ed.D. to my Ph.D.
3.     I think about getting a coffee at Starbucks.
4.     I think about getting a double espresso at Starbucks.
5.     I want to beat them on the head with the Collected Works of George Orwell.

4. When I contemplate administrative salaries and raises within the CSU system over the last few years, I’d like to
1.     Give the chancellor and all the presidents, vice-presidents, associate vice-presidents 20% raises, so that they won’t be stolen away by private industry.
2.     Same as above, but I think 10% raises ought to do it.
3.     Get rid of them, but I’m afraid we might get worse.
4.     Get rid of them. I’ll take my chances.
5.     Pay General Motors to take them off our hands.

5. On the subject of cohort hiring:
1.     I think it’s really cool. Candidates out there long to be hired into cohorts, and if it weren’t for cohorts, we probably couldn’t hire anyone. The Provost is saving our school.
2.     OK, it’s going to be hard to fill our need for an interior designer in a Sierra Plant Ecology Cohort, but we think we can do it.
3.     I don’t care about cohorts. But if we use them, I think they should be determined at the school and department level, not by the provost
4.     Does anyone out there realize that salary money is eventually going to come out of Level B allocations, even if the provost provides some initial money from Centrally Monitored Funds?
5.     I think we should refuse every cohort hire offered. This is where the rubber meets the road in top-down management.

6. On the new logo:
1.     I don’t care if it is a cat print. That just demonstrates our commitment to diversity.
2.     I think that “Diversity. Distinction. Discovery” will last as long as Semper Fi, or the family crest of the Percy’s: Esperance!
3.     Looks like a hospital sign.
4.     It’s like renaming the Titanic after it hit the iceberg.
5.     It’s like renaming the Titanic after it hit the iceberg—and renaming it the Lusitania

Now, total your score. If you scored between

6 to 12, You are very happy at Fresno State, and probably in the Kremen School of Education;
13 to 24, You are not happy, but you’ve got many years to go at Fresno State, and you’re trying to hang in there;
25 to 30, You are counting the days until you can FERP or retire completely.

1 comment:

  1. Oh no - I scored 27! But I just got tenure less than 2 years ago... and you're telling me I should already be counting down to FERP/retirement?!

    BTW, I don't understand the concern in response 2 to Q5: "... hard to fill our need for an interior designer in a Sierra Plant Ecology Cohort...". Haven't you been to our FAT airport? What better example of Sierra Plant Ecological Interior Design?! We could, indeed should, be world leaders in this interdisciplinary field which will revolutionize interior design and ecology both!