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More on The Cougar School of Medicine and PORK.

UW WSU warOver at the AAUP listserv, Professor Sharona Gordon asked a good question :

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Who is it at WSU that wants a new medical school? Don’t they have shared governance? Is it the faculty and the administration? Do the students have a say? Is it just the board of regents? Can someone explain their logic?

I have two simple answers,

First, no one in administration (UW or WSU) uses the faculty senate as an adviser on these issues..at best Regents and Presidents  see Faculty Senates as a kind of water downed unions.

Second, all of the requested money goes to jobs and construction at WSU.  This is simply PORK.  The Vice President for Development at WSU, essentially said this in his OPED in the Tacoma News Tribune.
But you ask a great question.  Why hasn’t the WSU Senate been asked to discuss this in terms of its ACADEMIC value??   How do students and faculty at WSU benefit from having a second (or third rate) medical school as opposed to taking advantages of the resources created by WWAMI?
Personally, I think both campuses would benefit from more interactions, from more in state synergism that would strengthen what we offer not just to students but to enterprises looking for academic collaborations in  Washington state.

Finally, it is ironic that in the era of SKYPE and LINC, in the state where Microsoft has its headquarters,  the state would spend money on an unneeded medical school rather than investing in  our ability to use the web to enhance interactions between both research schools and our wonderful system of state colleges.

Imagine the impact if the UWSOM made more of its courses available across our state system?


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