Monday, October 12, 2015
UA has its very own Dr. Pangloss
When University of Akron President Scott Scarborough announced his plan in July to trim the school's debt while cutting 213 jobs, he wanted the cast-aside people that he was not a mean-spirited man. He said the cuts were "painful" but he did want to thank the severed victims while promising them counseling "to show them the respect and courtesy they deserve." Cool.
He also explained the mid-summer move to the Beacon Journal by saying that he wanted to put the "painful" upheaval behind the school before the fall semester. Cool, again.
As shown in other wobbly steps taken by Scarborough, it revealed his knack for miscalculation in the moves that have so troubled the campus ever since. Like burning post-shingles itch, they're not going away. (Trust me on this one!)
Nothing that occurred in July and later was "put behind".
Two scheduled campus protests are on the calendar - the first at the UA Board of Trustees meeting on Wednesday, from 9 to noon, in the Student Union. The Akron Chapter of the American Association of University Professors reported that a "coalition of groups representing students, faculty, staff, alumni and members of the community" will be face to face with the dormant trustees who have been conspicuously silent (except on occasion by the chairman) throughout the nightmare. Isn't it fair to ask whether UA really needs a board?
The second protest, courtesy of the Akron AAUP, will attend Scarborough's State of the University address on Oct 20 in, of all places, E.J. Thomas Hall, the site of Team Scarborough's wrecking crew. (Time: 1:30)
For this one, I can only imagine that Scarborough's recitation of the goodness of his administration will be inspired by Voltaire's Dr. Pangloss, who found good in everything, no matter what.