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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    A student’s suggestions on UA Transformation

    I know I’m not a department head or a tenured faculty member, or even someone who knows the difference between popcorn shrimp and prawns, but I feel it’s my right to put in my two cents about this whole transformation thing before it’s too late. To be honest, I’m not really sure what a “”white paper proposal”” is, and I’m actually terribly nervous that my whole argument won’t count because it’s only in the Daily Wildcat.

    Let’s get down to business. During your series of vague community meetings, you pointed out the need to “”consolidate expenses”” and “”draw on your collective wisdom.”” Well, that’s what I’m here to help with! If we sit down together and chew the fat a little, I’m sure we can come up with some departments to eliminate and people to fire. Together.

    First off, when I look at the list of academic departments online, I noticed that, Jim dang, there are a lot! Way too many, in my opinion. For example, what in the hell is the Terry J. Lundgren Center for Retailing? “”Students can also pursue M.S. and Ph.D. degrees leading to management and/or research positions with retail companies””? What the hell kind of Ph.D. research do you do at Sears? How to make high-waisted maternity shorts applicable to post-modern facilitation techniques? I kid, I kid, but this one’s gotta go.

    Secondly, the Race Track Industry Program. I go onto their Web site, and there are pictures of horses. On the college campus, for God’s sake. Horses? Get real, guys.

    Now I don’t want to make this all about cutting frivolous programs, because there are a lot of important programs we should cut as well. For example: the Media Arts program. They have that nice new Marshall building with the elevators, but what do they do all day? Write critiques on “”The Godfather”” and sit smugly. My friend said this about Bill Maher last night, but I think it applies in this case: for these people, smug should be a verb. When they’re smoking in class and downing their cappuccinos, we should say, “”Oh man, they’re smugging again.”” Or something like that.

    There’s also been a lot of talk about consolidation instead of elimination, which I think is a good idea. The only problem: what are we going to do with all the signs? If the College of Public Health is merged with the College of Pharmacy, we’ll be wasting two perfectly good wall plaques. We’ll seriously have to brainstorm about that, because it’s a lot cheaper to just get rid of programs and their signs than to make new ones. And isn’t this all about money anyway? Perhaps we could persuade the sign-makers to do it for free by offering them tenure, or research positions. Just a thought.

    I have another idea that maybe nobody’s thought of yet, and it involves Pita Pit. Actually, maybe it doesn’t, but man, I just realized I’m pretty hungry. I should probably get something to eat after this proposal, which is exactly what I plan to do.

    But anyway, my new idea could possibly have something to do with paying people less. I know we want to attract great professors with notoriety and stuff, but seriously, what can someone really do with 200 grand a year? After you buy every candy at The Candy Factory, is there really anything else for you out there? Why don’t you give back a little, especially since you’re here for me, allegedly, and I’m paying butt-loads in tuition?

    It’s getting so bad that I can’t even afford to be a student anymore; I’ve been sneaking into Social Sciences 100 and pretending I’m enrolled! I actually tried to turn in my test, and the anthropology professor wrote a question mark next to my name and gave me a D minus! Now how about that, buddy. I’m not even a student.

    Oh, shoot, I’m not sure if I should have revealed that for my “”white paper proposal,”” but I guess it doesn’t matter anyway. You probably already made the decisions, like, last week, but decided to keep it secret so you appear more democratic. It’s okay, I feel ya. I tried to eliminate some of the people in the foster home I grew up in a few years ago, and that was a tiresome process as well. In the face of adversity, I wish you the best.

    Andi Berlin

    – Andi Berlin is a journalism senior. She can be reached at

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