Proceedings of
Conference on Values in Higher Education

Stewardship andOpportunism:
The Moral Roots of Accountability

April 16-18, 1998

Alphabetical Roster of Presenters


    University of Southern California

    The Ethical Responsibility of Trustees for the Interpretation of Institutional Mission

    The interpretation of institutional mission is the primary ethical responsibility of trustees of independent colleges and universities. This moral accountability entails both fidelity to the founding purposes and their transformation in light of changed conditions and circumstances. Trustees' accountability is rooted in the legal and moral conception of trusts and the nature of trusteeship. Trustees, rather than presidents or faculty, have the lead responsibility for the interpretation of mission.


    The University of Tennessee at Knoxville

    See UTK Family Values Panel.


    The University of Tennessee at Knoxville

    A Parent's Perspective: Funding Childcare and the Child Development Labs


    The University of Tennessee at Knoxville

    Leadership in the Interrogatory Mood From a Culture of Blame to a Culture of Responsibility

    It is clear that one of the more important contextual changes affecting American higher education in the latter half of the 20th century has been the emergence of assertive external voices on questions of accountability. Questions of educational performance and stewardship that once resided almost entirely in the hands of faculty and campus administrative officers now occupy the attention of governing and coordinating boards and legislative/executive officers of government. Changing climates call for a change in the way in which we view leadership.


    The University of Tennessee at Knoxville

    Radix Redux

    Controversy about the essence of the university is coextensive with the emergence of the institution. The questions have become more pointed and more urgent in the context of challenges related both to post-modernism and to contemporary economic pressures. Embedded in the ongoing debate about the essence and future of the university is a thread of consensus: the definition of a value that must be defended if tomorrow’s university is to be, in any meaningful way, connected with its past.


    The University of Tennessee at Knoxville

    Design Education as a Model for the Application of Knowledge: Integration of Teaching, Creative Activity, and Public Service

    In 1996, the Carnegie Foundation released a multi-year study regarding architectural education. This study had been commissioned by the allied professional architectural organizations related to the profession, registration, accreditation, and education. With numerous suggestions for future improvements, the study was a strong affirmation of the fundamental studio based educational model which is pursued in diverse ways by over one hundred American architecture programs. Dr. Ernest Boyer was fascinated by the design studio as a unique educational model involving collaborative learning of students and faculty. Using the Carnegie Report as a general foundation for discussion, this presentation will address: (1) Outline of studio based education as a collaborative effort of students and faculty; (2) Professional education as a balance of training and education; and (3) Opportunities for undergraduate learning to be applied to real needs of local and regional communities. The presentation will also feature specific case studies of course work at the University of Tennessee in which undergraduate student learning, under faculty direction, has been of immense value to local communities.


    The University of Texas Law School

    Academic Freedom and the Pursuit of Educational Diversity

    Remarks by Lino Graglia, Professor of Law at the University of Texas, about the academic competitiveness of African American and Mexican American students stirred up a national controversy. This paper will review the events and describe the value tensions that led faculty colleagues to take opposing positions on a resolution of censure.


    The University of Tennessee at Knoxville

    The Myth of Better Times: America's Real Family Values


    The University of Tennessee at Knoxville

    See UTK Family Values Panel.


    The University of Tennessee at Knoxville

    The Biology of Moral Roots

    "Education is the instruction of the intellect in the laws of Nature, under which name I include not merely things and their forces but men and their ways, and the fashioning of the affections and of the will into an earnest and loving desire to move in harmony with these laws" (T. H. Huxley). Can the biologist's perspective on the changing needs and wants of humans inform the conduct of education? This begs the next question: are there "laws"or "lawful principles" that guide human development and which would, by virtue of our fuller understanding of them, inform education? There is a related concern: how should teaching resources, if limited, be allocated between lowest and highest achieving students? Competition between honors and remedial programs demand reflection on our responsibilities and motives as teachers.


    State University of New York at Stony Brook

    The Educational Gyroscope

    Where does the responsibility lie for what is happening to the quality of higher education? Do the universities share that responsibility? When we talk about Universities, to whom are we referring? The president, the academic officers (vice president, provost, or dean), department chairment, the faculty as a whole, or non-academic administrators? There are two educational gyroscopes—to keep a balance, or even keel: the president acts as an external gyroscope between the public, alumni/ae, and parents; and the academic (educational) leader acts as the internal gyroscope. This paper will address the functions and responsibilities of the educational gyroscopes.


    Georgia Institute of Technology

    Quid Pro Quo: What Universities Really Get from Donors, and What They Owe Them In Return

    Universities think they get money from their donors; what they really get is a rather powerful form of intellectual leadership. This paper explores the ways in which private patronage has affected the university historically, and defines the accountability the modern university owes its patrons.


    Florida A & M University

    The Education Revolution of the 90's

    The new themes prevalent in higher education in the 90's, which will certainly guide education for the future, are accountability and performance funding. This presentation will focus on and provide an overview of the changes in higher education, the specific requirements placed on institutions and their impact on quality.


    The University of Tennessee at Knoxville

    A Weird Insult from Norway: Linus Pauling, the Bomb, and the Ethics of Faculty Involvement in Public Affairs

    In 1963, Linus Pauling, acknowledged as one of the premier scientists of the century and the recipient of the 1954 Nobel price for chemistry, received the Nobel Peace Prize for his efforts on behalf of a treaty banning the atmospheric testing of nuclear weapons. The reaction to the award was deeply split, both in the press and in the academic community. Because of Pauling's extensive efforts in public affairs, his research program had suffered and he had neglected many of his duties at Caltech. His use of his stature as a Nobel Laureate to gain attention for his political agenda was considered inappropriate by some of his colleagues. His involvement with a "left-wing" cause had angered conservative Caltech trustees. To those sympathetic with his cause, however, he was a hero. This paper uses Pauling's story as a vehicle to explore some interesting ethical questions related to faculty involvement in public affairs.

    The University of Texas Law School

    People of America versus School of the Americas: U.S. Support of Central and South American Armies Who Kill

    The United States spends $18.4 million a year supporting the School of the Americas, Ft. Benning, Georgia, where Latin American soldiers are taught torture, murder, and armament. Along with 604 missionaries and Amnesty volunteers, we committed civil disobedience and marched into the post. Should scholars become involved in "fringe" protests? How does protesting the SOA differ from joining a militia?
    Language Arts Acadmy

    Golden Times

    A daughter's view of the same protest against the School of the Americas.


    The University of Tennessee at Knoxville

    See UTK Family Values Panel.


    Hartford College for Women

    Mistakes Were Made: Language and the Moral Roots of Accountability

    Publication of the Nixon tapes in 1997 generated much public and private discussion about accountability and stewardship, as though the last three decades of the 20th century had invented both the terms and the reality. The moral roots of human accountability can be found in the prose and poetry of the human race. The ancient question, "Am I my brother's keeper?" first posed in the biblical story of Cain and Abel, is answered in the Hebrew Bible and the teachings of Christ, as well as the Koran and moral philosophy. More interesting than the genesis of accountability is what we have made of it at the brink of the millennium. Starting with familiar phrases ("Someone had blundered," "mistakes were made," "no controlling legal authority"), this paper will apply to accountability in higher education leadership, among others, the norm used by the Supreme Court justice in judging pornography, "I know it when I see it."


    Syracuse University

    "Nothing to Teaching! No Way to Teach! Together with the Obligation to Teach!" Dilemmas in the Rhetoric of Assessment and Accountability

    The title of this presentation points to possible problems resulting from pressures on faculty in the contemporary university to identify desired learning objectives and means of assessing outcomes. The dilemma to be explored has to do with the requirement to name in advance behavioral goals in the teaching of arts and ideas, that is, in courses whose aim it is to remain open to discovery and surprise. A question will be raised regarding the meaning and locus of "accountability." Does it finally belong to state legislatures, boards of trustees and regents, accrediting agencies, administrators, instructional managers, faculty, students, or subject-matters? The issue is: What or who "counts?"


    The University of Tennessee at Knoxville

    Memory and Accountability: An Augustinian Reading of the Varieties of Academic Amnesia

    The abuses of history in interpreting and accounting for the problems of the university are well known. But there is a profound moral obligation not to fall into forgetfulness of our past, whether the immediate past of each university or the longer, broader, and yet astonishingly fragile past of universities in Western culture. There is also an equivalent and matching obligation not to deliver ourselves up to a nostalgia for some form or phase of university history that may once have delighted or nurtured us. This paper will move from those grand asseverations to a more practical review of the many varieties of forgetfulness in the present academy, and the several causes of that forgetfulness.


    The University of Tennessee at Martin

    Inclusive Moral Models of Leadership

    Many colleges and universities have programs which are supposed to improve performance and include more voices as well as contain cost. But can these plans work if our model of leadership is still based on the rational hierarchical paradigm? Is this just a cosmetic change that continues to ignore voices other than the traditional ones? I will present a combination of two models, Servant Leadership and The Partnership Way, as possibilities which may allow us to hear many voices as well as help us to explore in depth "to what ends higher education should be directed."


    The University of North Carolina at Greensboro

    Angels Minding Their Own Business: A Utopian Tale of Educational Values Restored

    It seems appropriate at this last of three conferences on values in higher education to reflect somewhat broadly, also to reflect on the conference series' overall topic. This paper, which will be more like a recitation of a story, will envision what the university of tomorrow might look like. This will be done first, and very briefly, by way of a critique of what is presently the case with regard to values in higher education. Most of the paper, however, will be comprised of a frankly utopic analysis of what, in the future, a university might be. Some of the questions that will be addressed in the paper are: will any of us still be doing research (or, will any of us be doing anything else)?; what will university general education curricula look like?; and where will our students be (in the classroom; in distance learning centers, etc.)? A broader question to be addressed: what in the world does higher education have to do with angels minding their own business? We will see.


    Johnson County Community College

    Corporate Mindset: Collegial Morass

    Colleges have a moral dilemma: when does cost cutting and the hiring of outside agencies impede the general dialog, prevent the separation of pursuit of knowledge from the pursuit of money, and cause the pollution of the collegial environment? An examination of these questions reveals faculty opinion on the impact of the corporate mindset on a large community college in the Midwest.


    The University of Tennessee at Knoxville

    See UTK Community Partnership Center Panel


    Emory University

    Responding or Responsible?

    This paper reflects on recent pedagogical dilemmas I have recently faced. Given the Clinton administration's commitment to providing an education to anyone who desires one, we may forget to ask whether everyone actually needs a college education. It remains unclear as to how that question is best answered, given the fact that we have not yet seen it as questionable. "The consumer-service model" has triumphed recently in higher education, raising significant issues for each of us in the classroom. Where education is made a matter of responding to student needs, it becomes less clear how we as educators are to help shape our students' aspirations, rather than providing what they think they want. I want to ask whether we are not asked to be responsible to other things/ideals as well as persons-than to our students alone.


    The University of Mississippi

    Grasping for External Support: Are We Selling Our Souls?

    Institutions of higher education are feeling the pressure of increasing expectations, even in the face of decreasing financial support. The competition for both private gifts and federal grants is increasing; the heydays of external funding may be over, even as many institutional budgets are shrinking. The public's trust in educational and research institutions is wavering; there are demands for more accountability for public funds. Faculty continue to be subject to "publish or perish" requirements for promotion and tenure, even as they see paylines for grants dropping. In the face of these increasing financial pressures, faculty and institutions may be forced to seek alternate sources of funding for research and educational activities. In these endeavors, some may become creative, and some may be tempted to consider sources of funding or mechanisms that compromise traditional values. What threats are posed by these circumstances? What defenses are available? Who and what will determine the institutional response? This paper will address these issues facing institutions and investigators in this era of "tight money."


    The Community Partnership Center: Linking the University to the Community
    The university's responsibility to the community will be explored in this presentation that highlights the work of the UTK Community Partnership Center (CPC). Founded in 1994, CPC is an interdisciplinary center under the Office of Research that links university resources and people with groups in urban and rural low- and moderate-income communities to work collaboratively to solve social and economic problems. Based on mutually-respectful research and action partnerships, CPC activities enable the least-empowered in our region to access the wealth of resources and knowledge on campus. At the same time, the scholarship of faculty and students is enhanced by community knowledge and real-world experiential learning. University and community panel members will share their perspectives on and experiences with CPC university/community partnerships.


    "Family Values"and Free Inquiry: Research, Responsibility, and the Place of Women's Studies
    The phrase "family values" is frequently used to criticize non-"traditional" family groupings and to suggest that women have a particular responsibility to care for their own children in their own homes. Women's Studies programs and other academic programs that describe and evaluate a range of diverse family models risk accusations that they are undermining the state's ethical value structure and, more specifically, that they don't care about children or about adequate parenting. The university has a specific responsibility to support free inquiry and wide-ranging research into the nature of the family in the past and in the present, into women's roles in society, and into child development. Is this support in conflict with family values? With feminism? Or-to use a close-to-home example-with on-campus, university-supported child care?

    Questions and comments may be directed to the Conference Convenor, Alvin G. Burstein.

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