Friday, September 28, 2007

Insult to Injury: Revenge of Bizarro U

There must be some very special gene we academics have that helps us find unerring ways to piss off our colleagues and breed subterranean resentments in ways no one would imagine possible. We really are geniuses at this if nothing else.

From our previous installments, readers may remember that administrators at my Bizarro World University, having worked diligently behind the scenes to discredit and disband my interdisciplinary department, bizarrely decided to create a new interdisciplinary college – all without any substantive faculty input.

Now news comes by way of an inadvertently forwarded email, that a vote has been scheduled on a formal resolution to dissolve my department as a last minute addition to the agenda of our college's curriculum committee. Apart from the fact that the administration has discovered that disbanding an academic department requires a vote by a least some faculty body, the vote was scheduled without notifying anyone in my department that it would be taking place.

This has had the completely predictable result of reminding everyone in the department of just how badly they have been treated throughout these events and further cementing their bitterness, anger and disaffection. Adding this gratuitous bit of insult to injury seems so unnecessary. A simple, courteous notification of the upcoming vote would have been so easy and appropriate. Of course, it also would have been appropriate for the decision to have been made by this faculty committee rather than for it, so perhaps that's the real reason behind the secrecy.

You must excuse me now; I have to go practice my ax grinding. Clearly it's a skill I will need to master as I continue to learn my proper role as tenured faculty.

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