Wednesday, September 26, 2012

The Start of the New Academic Year at UCLA

UCLA is now filled with young, physically fit enthusiastic students walking (and jogging) around the campus.   As a not-young, not fit, cynical professor, I'm wondering who has the right attitude?   I'm now wondering whether the students are right and I am wrong.  With that thought in mind,  I am trying to change my game.   I plan to be kinder to people, to show up to some meetings and to try to do my job.  I have hired some talented undergrads to work for me as research assistants and I'm hopeful that they will nudge my work forward.  In the classroom, I will teach 4 classes this year and my goal is to make each of my lectures real good and memorable.

I'm now optimistic about UCLA's trajectory.  The School has made some very strong faculty hires in economics, public policy, urban planning, the Law School, and the Business School.  I would like to see more hiring at the senior faculty level but we need our endowment to grow to achieve this goal and I can't control that.   We are told that our leaders are effectively raising private $ and I will give them the benefit of the doubt.

UPDATE:  Read this obituary for BU's President John Silber .   He's my kind of University Leader.