This has a lot of people (Forbes' Steve Salzberg, among them)
outraged that a school that has a $100 million nationally ranked
football program would gut/eliminate/eviscerate/filet/pick-your-word a core
part of the science curriculum. U.S. News and World Report ranked UF's CS
department 39th in the nation two years ago.
always, the truth is somewhere in the middle. It's true that the
school, like most across America, is under budget pressure. It's true
the dean of the College of Engineering has a proposal on the table to
reorganize the department. What happens is yet to happen.
Misguided priorities? But
the ruckus affords an opportunity for us to debate the role of athletics
in establishments founded (whenever they were founded) to educate young
men and women and advance research in the interests of society.
were not founded to teach students to hit a baseball farther, score
more points on the football fields or basketball courts. But over the
years, you'd be forgiven if you got the impression that academics was an
afterthought at many universities, smitten as they are by the almighty
revenue stream from ESPN, sporting-events gates, and apparel and foam-finger sales.
would be fine if the money supported academics but it doesn't. Most
athletic programs are run by associations not directly connected to the
academic programs. At UF, the association gives about $3 million a year
over the past two decades to academics. And often, sports-program donors
give money only to the sports programs and specify their donation is
not to be used for anything else. And like clockwork, donors routinely get called out or prosecuted for slipping money to "student"-athletes, who are taking up a space in a classroom that should be given to a student, not a semi-professional sports figure.
My take is that sports at the
college level should be intramural only. The NCAA, ESPN and the rest can
go pound sand. They'll figure out other ways to exploit young athletes
But that's just me. What do you
Should sports be divorced from academic institutions that receive
Should sports associations be required to fund academic programs
(not just the occasional scholarship but research programs?)
I recently read an article on the privatization of education in America. State standardized tests are largely private enterprise big business. There's an organization working on creating a private GED program. I think that's right in line with the concerns about for-profit sports taking priority from academics at colleges.
I believe in free enterprise, but everything needs some constraints. Public funding for education is currently not sufficient. That's why all of these profit making activities are popping up. In my opinion, education should be primarily publicly funded.
Athletics are an important part of our culture, but the primary purpose of a school should be to educate people, not to deliver entertainment.
Are you just trolling, or do you really believe that? That's quite the slam against CS majors in general, considering it's in the top 5 in starting salaries for undergrad degrees. Companies, ethics aside, wouldn't be willing to pay those salaries if the talent wasn't worth it.
I actually think it starts earlier than that. In high school, athletes are given preferential treatment that doesn't prepare them for the real world. Our priorities are misguided when extra-curricular studies are viewed as being more important than math and science or job related skills.
The thing I liked about where I went to school (nmt.edu) was the two most organized sports, both student clubs, were rugby and beer ball. The goal was the same, just different levels of violence.
Never made much of a difference for donations to the school.
Compare/contrast to UNM and NMSU. At UNM, the coaches (each) make much more than the university president.
Sports do placate a many (many I dare say) those that would (in all probability), be rampaging the streets causing trouble if not watching another form of violence on the mind-control box. Also it is a sad reality (I suspect), that many if not most people that graduate from Computer Science degrees have practically no chance of making a living from it let alone make any non-negligible (definition of non-negligible being quite relative obviously), contribution to the field. How many of these undergraduate CS degrees are little more than Arts degrees? Achieving an average of 50%-60% over a 4 year of a CS degree worth much if anything at all? Lastly Computer Science actually has little to do with computers, well the hardware at least (as we all probably know). The etymology of the term has been stagnate since the times when hardware was all important, any-ways the point being is that Computer Science may well be called Maths-too-challenging-unless-born-with-the-right-genes Science. The problem with US tertiary education (limited to the CS context if you must), is the source, that is the secondary education system.
Don't you need to be a millionaire to get into a decent university of there? Then practically immoral (or unethical at least), to work in a big U.S. (not them) corporation?
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