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Minnesotans deserve assurance about administrative costs.
Check the temp in Hades. I agree with the Strib. To some extent Kaler was dealt a bad hand having to take over from his incompetent predecessor. That said, his recent comments to the press dont elicit much sympathy.
The U needs to accept the fact that the "new normal" for Universities is less govt funding and the need to provide affordable and effective education to our kids to compete in the global economy.
The fact that the U of M paid North Carolina U $800,000 not to play two football games,in clear violations of the lessons they are supposed to teach, is evidence enough of an air of autonomy felt by U of M administrators with the real world.
Health care, transportation, K12 education and local government aid are all higher priorities for the DFL than the university. The noise being made here about reducing "administrative costs" is a smoke screen to hide the fact that Tom Bakk and company can't afford to spend more money on the U given the priorities of the interest groups the DFL must cater to.
I don't think the university professors or administrators have a clue about driving the dramatic change in education that is required. They remind me of the same compensation problem that has been called out for corporate CEOs...tons of conflicts of interest with peers reinforcing the salaries of their peers.
Though I agree that reforms are needed at the U of M, and that the spending focus should be on teaching and classrooms rather than administration and stadiums, some of the criticisms aimed at the U seem to be overheated and completely out of proportion to the actual problem. Like it or not, the U is one of the main economic engines of Minnesota. It has brought many billions of dollars to the state over the years and attracts talent from around the country and around the world. Hundreds of businesses have direct connections to research pioneered by the university -- medical research, new crops, technology development etc. Thousands of businesses are staffed by talented people who were educated at the university. It is really impossible to fully calculate the huge economic and cultural impact the university has had on our state. We should work to make the U of M better, but let's not kill the golden goose just because its administrative costs seem to be out of whack.
Every criticizes the U. for its excessive administrative overhead, but is this really the case? Being a research university, the U. has to deal with a myriad of mandated regulations and oversight, particularly regarding government research funding. These regulations require administrative staff to provide financial, contractual and legal support. I would venture to guess that the U. has similar administrative overhead as any comparable research university.
This is about the first time I've ever agreed with something put out by the Star Tribune editoral board. For them to go after the U of M, they must really be wasting money.
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