December 19, 2006
By Robert Townsend
We tend to speak glibly about the intrusion of corporate culture and values on America’s colleges and universities, but we rarely take the time to reflect on what this means, how it has transformed our practices as historians, and how it affects our students and professional colleagues. At the annual meeting in Atlanta, Gerda Lerner and I have organized a session for Saturday morning that is intended to open up this issue for discussion.
Gerda will be chairing the session, and the other panelists will include Ed Ayers (University of Virginia); Lillian Guerra (Yale University); Leon Fink (University of Illinois at Chicago); Juli Jones (San Diego Mesa College) and Nancy Schrom Dye (Oberlin College). To help facilitate the discussion, I’ve also prepared a handout summarizing some of the available data on these issues, which is now available online among the other pre-circulated papers for the meeting.
The goal of the session will be to raise these issues in a self-reflective manner; to reflect on changes in higher education and in our lives as educators and participants in education, in the hope of stimulating further discussion and provide ideas for future action. We hope to see you there on Saturday morning, at 9:00 a.m. in the Atlanta Hilton’s, Grand Salon C.