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Posted on February 27 at 1:02 p.m.Suggest removal
Boren's comments would have a lot more validity if he supported the creation of a body which represented the interests of the institution's stakeholders like a university community council. The premise that he just shouldn't be held accountable to the public by the Board of Regents anymore really isn't very persuasive. It's actually a bit self-serving.
Posted on October 23 at 8 p.m.Suggest removal
Nope, I'm actually a JD/MBA who graduated in 2011. I put together a number of multi-disciplinary projects to bring technology to market. One year, I worked with a couple of chemical engineers and a electrical engineer. Another year, I worked with a chemical engineer, a pharmacist, a petroleum resrvoir engineer, an accountant, and a marketing major. My classes in both programs typically included people from a wide range of backgrounds and experiences -- all of whom had unique things they brought to the table. And, none of my peers were handicapped with limited vocabularies or reasoning skills. In fact, those with different backgrounds and experiences (who, presumably, came from demographic groups whose averages are lower) probably contributed more to the classes' understanding of the material than anyone else.
Posted on October 23 at 5:43 p.m.Suggest removal
You know, we can go round and round about the social justice aspects of affirmative action. But, some of these anti-diversity arguments are truly ignorant. (1) A person is not the sum of their grade point averages and their standardized test scores. (2) People do not get a quality higher education if they are stuck in a homogeneous environment.
As you get further and further along in your educational career, one of the things you realize is that you will start learning a lot more from your peers in the classroom than you do from your textbooks and your instructors. Readings, lectures, and homework assignments become much less important and independent research, group projects, and classroom discussions become much more important.
That means that admissions officers strive to create an academic environment where everyone brings a different set of backgrounds and experiences to the table. That’s part of the holistic person outlook. It is not just what knowledge a person can absorb (as demonstrated their grade point averages and their standardized test scores), but what knowledge a person can share with his or her peers (as demonstrated by their backgrounds and their experiences).
So, when people start saying they were denied admission even though they were more qualified than others who were admitted, that’s not exactly accurate. The institution had already admitted plenty of white, Anglo-Saxon, Protestants from affluent, upper middle-class suburbs whose life experiences were entirely drawn from within the classroom. And, those who were not selected didn’t score as highly as those from the same background and they didn’t have anything additional to offer.
They couldn’t draw upon their experiences in a different country. They couldn’t share what it was like growing up in a poor minority neighborhood. They couldn’t talk about what it was like raising a child as a single parent or going overseas to fight in the military.
Posted on October 11 at 11:42 p.m.Suggest removal
I'm not sure why this bill hasn't attracted more attention. UOSA pays 19-20 people -- its President, Vice President, Chief of Staff, Webmaster, Congress Chair, Congress Vice Chair, Congress Secretary, GSS Chair, GSS Vice Chair, GSS Secretary, General Counsel, Associate General Counsel, Election Chair, and Election Board Members (as well as various administartive support staff). And, It's going to eliminate funding for the Greek and Multicultural Council Presidents to pay for another stipend for the Ways and Means Chair?
Posted on August 24 at 1:48 p.m.Suggest removal
I think you’re exaggerating the situation . . . .
First, I hate to be insensitive. But, if my grandmother got drunk, climbed on top of the administration building, and fell off, I’d accept the fact that it’s a matter of public interest and her autopsy report was a public record. I may prefer people to remember her in a different light. I may wish that this stuff wasn’t out there. But, I can’t really scream and shout that it’s an invasion of privacy. Grandma did get drunk, climb on top of the administration building, and fall off.
Second, did the Daily necessarily go digging really deep into irrelevant material? Did they interview anyone who might have had an affair or a grudge? Did they go looking for naughty videotapes? Did they do a random credit check? Did they ferret through her mail? Nope. They did a follow-up story – answering the next logical question with the relevant public record. What did the autopsy report say about her blood alcohol level? The autopsy record is a relevant public record.
Third, you act as if the Daily went out of their way and purchased space on a server specifically so they they could host this autopsy report. That’s not the case. And, if you check out other news stories, you’ll see links to a lot of other public documents that have been obtained in the past. It’s a regular practice – sourcing news and giving the public direct access to it. And, as a general rule, it’s a good practice.
There’s nothing wrong with making it easier for the people to see documents which belong to them.What we’re getting at here is really that some people would have simply appreciated that the situation be handled with a little more delicacy. They’re upset. They wish things could be cast in a different light. They’d prefer people to know less details. And, they’d like the Daily to take an angle that’s sympathetic to that, to tell the story the way they’d like it to be told.
But, make no mistake about it. That’s a request – not a right. You don’t get to tell people what they get to say / write or how they get to say / write it. And, if you’re gonna throw out terms like “sensationalism” and “invasion of privacy” and go on and on about the Daily lacking journalistic integrity and say that the editor needs to step down, then you’d better have your facts and your terms right.
The world is changing. We live in a weird voyeuristic society – where it’s only a matter of time before access to any information is only click away. And, some people will undoubtedly push traffic to their sites by putting up the most grisly pictures they can on their web sites . . . . The thing is: That’s not what happened here. What you see is a regular ongoing practice at the Daily of providing access to public records used in stories.
Why don’t you acknowledge that and cut the Daily a bit of slack?
Posted on August 23 at 11:46 p.m.Suggest removal
As I skim through all of these comments, I have to confess that I’m a bit disappointed by all of the people lining up to say that the editor should step down. I hate to break this to you, ladies and gentlemen, but the Daily is not a public relations arm of the institution. Its job isn’t to make everyone look good. It’s there to educate and inform.
The Daily has done a tremendous job of taking up serious issues in recent years. It has tried to become more than just the fluff publication you see on many campuses – which publish only cheesy human interest stories. It has earned a reputation in the journalistic community for its hard-hitting investigative reporting and it has won a lot of recognition.
The Daily has made it a regular practice to not only incorporate public records into its stories, but to also educate and inform people about that process and to give them the tools to find documents themselves. It’s not the first time that the Daily has included a link to those resources online. However, it may just be the first time some people expended enough effort to read the story and notice.
I’m sorry about the circumstances surrounding this student’s death. I know it’s got to be uncomfortable and embarrassing to those who knew the deceased. And, I certainly sympathize with that.
However, I don’t think that gives those people license to dictate how she is portrayed in the media. The Daily didn’t exploit the story, it didn’t try to get mileage out of any grisly photos, it didn’t really go out of its way to “sensationalize” anything. It covered the event in exactly the same fashion it covers all events – including an html link to the public records database.
Personally, I applaud them for making that their regular practice. I think it’s better to err on the side of providing too much access, then to risk providing too little.
Posted on June 19 at 11:04 p.m.Suggest removal
I can understand the desire to keep the machinery of the electoral college -- different voting requirements, the potential for election fraud, even variations in election day weather that affect turnout. The real problem is that it is a winner-take-all system and not proportional. We should not have a system where the only place your vote matters is in swing states.
Posted on November 29 at 5:25 p.m.Suggest removal
This series of articles is some really good investigative reporting. From personal experience, I know that this stuff isn't exactly material that comes out in one of Catherine Bishop's press releases. My kudos go out to Kathleen Evans and the Oklahoma Daily. You've put a lot of work into digging up the facts.
Posted on November 29 at 5:16 p.m.Suggest removal
I think Occupy Wall Street has a valid message. And, I applaud recent decisions by organizers to avoid being co-opted by other political organizations which have failed to hold the system accountable.
However, I disagree with the notion (asserted in this column) that Occupy Wall Street should continue to deliberately avoid any engagement in the political process.
The movement itself is an inspiration which should remain focused around general ideas rather than any political ticket or platform. However, at some point, there needs to be some form of spin-off -- people involved in the movement, breaking away and using the energy surrounding this effort to push for fundamental changes through the electoral process.
Even if the problems are systematic, surrendering the mechanisms of power and control to monied interests and confining things to the public parks and sidewalks really doesn't make much sense to me. It is conceding the system to them when the movement's underlying message should be that the system belongs to the people.
Posted on November 10 at 7:18 a.m.Suggest removal
Kudos to the Oklahoma Daily for taking this task on. There is a lot to report on at OU. And, the campus newspaper plays an important role in holding people accountable.
To sher8427, this is the job of the press. And, frankly, I'm surprised that you can go through any education system and not understand and appreciate that.
Did nobody ever teach you to ask questions? Or, do you just blindly accept that whatever any authority figure does must be for the best?
OU is a public institution of higher education. And, as such, it is the property of the People of the State of Oklahoma. That means that anything and everything it does is subject to public oversight. And, the press has a right to figure out what's going on and to report that information so that an informed public can make decisions.
Moreover, in an academic setting, one might even argue that all of the institution's stakeholders should have say in how things are run.
That idea, the concept of shared governance, is something that has been around at colleges and universities in the West for centuries. And, the campus newspaper plays an important role in informing the university community so that they can participate in the process.
In recent years, there has been a push to put influential figures into positions as university presidents and to shift away from a shared governance model to one of centralized CEO-style corporate governance -- where the refrain is always "it's a personnel issue" and we're supposed to just accept that.
However, that is not the traditional academic model. Campuses are supposed to be places of engagement and exchange.
Indeed, the true quality of the education that someone receives is really determined by their participation in the institution's decision-making processes.
Speaking from experience, you will learn a lot more outside of the classroom than you will in it. And, that's the way it should be if you're attending a real university and fully taking advantage of the opportunity to receive a higher education.
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