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Everything posted by zip-O-matic

  1. The problem with OU partisans is that they blindly listen to that cheap grifter that you hired as a President and take his word for everything. The man is an utter genius at telling his audience the things they desperately want to hear, but his actual performance is hollow and empty. I don't care how many kids are applying to OU as a backup school, they're not driving any quality improvements. Its freshman class quality has been completely stagnant. Now, I'm going to do something that McDavis doesn't and actually show you the facts. Here is your freshman class profile for last year and five years ago. And I'll compare it with some other schools around the state. OU Middle 50% on SAT 2009: 970-1200 2014: 980-1200 On the ACT 2009: 21-26 2014: 22-26 Percent Scoring 30+ 2009: 8% 2014: 7% Percent Scoring <24 2009: 52% 2014: 48% Percent in Top Tenth of HS Class 2009: 16% 2014: 15% Tell me, does that look like a university on the move? One that's "getting out from under the shadow" of OSU or Miami and closing the gap? Or does it look like a university that is completely stagnant. And how are you going to compete for top students when OU has an endowment per student half the size of Miami or UC and barely a quarter that of OSU? Here are some comparisons with UA and other schools in Ohio. At the top of the class, OU is NO better than UA despite the averages being dragged down by UA still being largely open admissions. How pathetic that OU with its 200 year history and delusions of grandeur can't even attract more 30+ ACT students than poor little open admissions Akron. UC has clearly passed you by at both the top and bottom of the freshman class profile, while OSU and Miami are playing an entirely different ballgame than OU. Think about this for a moment: OSU's 25th percentile ACT score is higher than OU's 75th percentile score. Would you care to tell me how OU is the hottest college in the state and is out of OSU's shadow again please. Middle 50% on SAT OU 980-1200 UA 900-1200 UC 1040-1290 Miami 1120-1330 OSU 1160-1390 Middle 50% on ACT OU 22-26 UA 19-26 UC 23-28 Miami 25-30 OSU 27-31 Percent Scoring 30+ on ACT OU 7% UA 7% UC 15% Miami 28% OSU 41% Percent Scoring <24 on ACT OU 48% UA 61% UC 31% Miami 8% OSU 5% Top Tenth of HS Class OU 15% UA 16% UC 20% Miami 34% OSU 61% Top Quarter of HS Class OU 43% UA 38% UC 48% Miami 68% OSU 94% Bottom Half of HS Class OU 18% UA 46% UC 19% Miami 7% OSU 1% Where else do you want to go with this? Research funding? National Academy members on faculty? Ranking of Departments/Doctoral Programs? I can do this all day. Everything points in one direction: that OU is no different than Akron or Can't or Toledo. I hate to break it to you, but OU absolutely deserved to be in the left column of that napkin. OSU and Miami don't view you as a competitor in any sense, and UC doesn't for anything but undergraduate students, which is rapidly changing as they pass you by. Quite frankly, I'd rather see UA admit that it has problems, challenges and areas where it has underperformed and attempt to do something about it than live in the deluded fantasy world that OU occupies inside its own head. BTW, don't look now but I think your Prez just gave his wife another raise. OU 2009 OU 2014 UA 2014 UC 2014 MU 2014 OSU 2014
  2. LA, Assuming a merger makes sense, I think it shouldn't be all about just being as big as possible and shoving as many students through as possible. One thing that I'm a very strong proponent of is a regulated, hierarchical public university system. The great thing about the California system (and a reason why tuition was so reasonable for so long) was that it was strictly regulated. Every school wasn't free go out and embark on a quest to challenge Berkeley. It allowed unnecessary redundancies to be avoided and resources to be allocated more effectively. Competition is not always a good thing when it is internal, whether within a corporation, a government or a university system. Often, it leads to gross inefficiencies as individual units lose sight of the big picture and pursue their own narrow empire building. It seems too as though this is the dominant line of thinking in both political parties in Ohio, so attempting to fight the man on this front would probably not end well. Now, this leads me to an area that's probably not going to be very popular. Ohio has a flagship campus. That boat sailed in the 1870s, was written into law by the Ohio legislature in 1906 and confirmed by outside sources in 1916 with OSU's election into the AAU (ahead of such universities as Northwestern, Texas, North Carolina, Washington, Duke and Vanderbilt). It's not going to change. Ohio is not California. It doesn't need--nor can afford--a Berkeley AND a UCLA. To make a comparison, Ohio, Indiana and Illinois would need to be a single state with a Chicago at each end for that comparison to be apt. What I would want to see from Akron (and perhaps the merged college) with the "Polytechnic" designation is a long term strategic plan as to what its role in a structured, rational Ohio public university system should be. This too is what the state wants to see, and it seems to be one of the few truly bipartisan issues that's transcended recent Democratic and Republican Governors. Personally, I think OU is the most pathetic university in America. Their entire sense of identity and self-worth and outlook is based on looking in the mirror and not seeing OSU reflected back at them. They are obsessed as an institution with the notion that they are just around the corner from this great historic wrong being righted, 150 years of Ohio higher education policy being undone and their imminent ascension to their rightful seat on the Iron Throne at hand. And quite frankly, it has stifled them as an institution. They are so wrapped up in not being OSU that they never give any honest thought as to what they could realistically be. All the while, they haven't even noticed UC passing them by in every quality metric: research, endowment, faculty stature, undergraduate selectivity. Despite it's history and name, I think there were very solid reasons that OU was not on the right side of that napkin. OU is on a glide path into the side of the mountain, and they can't even be bothered from taking their dicks out of their hands to look outside the cockpit to notice their impending doom. For all of UA's considerable challenges, I wouldn't trade places with OU for anything. So, in my eyes, the issue is that chasing the co-flagship dream is illusory and ultimately self-defeating, and quite frankly. UC and NEOU would compete against each other while OSU sails above the fray with that endowment, AAU membership, statewide cultural and economic reach, Big Ten sports and most favored son status with the state in any event. So what would the long term strategic plan for Ohio Tech (possibly merged w Can't and CSU) be? IMO: A merged campus should slim down to around 50K undergraduates. Spin off at least half of Can't's ridiculously too large branch campus system into independent community colleges.Raise admissions standards to the UC level while realizing that the next level (OSU/Big Ten/Miami) is out of reach and pursuing it (see OU's futility) is both not going to be successful while taking attention away from achievable goals. Use what's left of Can't's branch system as a place for kids who don't make the first cut to spend a year or two before transferring. You can't attract the faculty who attract the research and grad students if you're an open admissions university.Focus on the "outcomes" that are important to the state right now--graduation rates, retention and debt load. UA has not done this well and is being penalized under the current funding system for it.Keep YSU out of the merger to act as the open admission university for NEO.Consolidate graduate and research programs into core competencies--again realizing that we can be either a very good focused university or a mediocre OSU clone. That's going to mean eliminating some Ph.D programs and probably the Akron law school.Above all, study the recent history of UC and OU because there is a stark contrast between the school that's done it correctly and the school that does nothing but look in the mirror and get angry and bitter.
  3. Arizona State's honors college has a student profile nowhere near that of Columbia or any Ivy. Average ACT 28.9/SAT 1300. That's pretty much the average for the freshman class (overall not honors) at OSU recently and would not get you into any Ivy League college without some serious extra-curricular bonus points. I'm certain that there are some students there with Ivy level credentials, but if those are the averages, I'd venture a guess that it's not more than 10% or 15%. http://barretthonors.asu.edu/about/facts/ And I still maintain that the true value of the endowment is how large an institution it has to serve, how thinly it has to be spread. You can't tell me that $600 million could provide the same quality level at an 88K student university as it does at $16K Miami. You might have a few well endowed and staffed departments and some scholarships to throw at the honors college students, but the vast majority of the university would be starved for funds. As Arizona State makes these changes, I'd be very interested to see how their average freshman profile changes, research funding rises or declines and how well they do in some other areas such as National Academy members on faculty. The one thing that leads me to kind of see things your way is that Akron and Can&#39;t really have nowhere to go but up by most of these metrics, so perhaps the big gamble is the right one.
  4. I've been following this debate and wanted to chime in. It's a very pivotal time for Akron, and I'm not opposed to the renaming if it's part of a more holistic approach at improvements. What I have a problem with is this notion that following the Arizona State model is some magic path to success and increased relevance. Arizona State has become something of a joke and a diploma mill. Their increased size hasn't done anything towards making them more competitive with the U of Arizona. Size alone will not bring quality. OSU and Minnesota have been larger than Michigan for generations, but it's never been some magic formula for either school to equal or surpass Michigan in stature. Hell, MSU is considerably larger than UM, but it doesn't translate into MSU being an equal much less assuming the "flagship" mantle. And MSU is a university with a billion dollar endowment and AAU membership. Quality (and the financial resources that fuel it) competes with quality, not size. Here's an interesting and very thoughtful discussion on the Texas A&M board about their new Chancellor's goal to become an 80K undergraduate diploma mill. There are a lot of direct comparisons to Arizona State, and nobody is looking at that as a positive development. http://texags.com/forums/5/topics/2624036/1 And here are some numbers relating to the economic resources of a merged NEO megacampus, and how it would compare with the rest of the state. Endowment per student (undergrad and grad) at main campus OSU: $61,000 UC: $36,000 Miami: $32,000 OU: $16,776 Akron: $8,373 Now add Can't State ($3695) and the amount for the combined campuses is $5615. You have a very large and very poor university. Throw in YSU and CSU and you add another 32,000 students with another $250M (shocked that YSU is equal to UA) in endowment, so the combined megacampus has an endowment/student of $5852--A third of OU, a sixth of Miami or UC and less than a tenth of OSU. Akron becomes less competitive from a financial resources standpoint through a merger. Is the merged campus going to do better at fundraising from alumni? Probably worse in the short run as many are alienated by the changes. Is an 88K megacampus going to suddenly start attracting National Academy level faculty and more, higher stature research. Better students? The experience of ASU would say no. Their rush to become a 90K campus hasn't moved them up in rankings. It hasn't made them the campus of choice for the state's top 10% students vis-a-vis the U of Arizona; their recent freshman class profiles are about the same as Cincinnati's. And it certainly hasn't done anything to move them up into the upper echelon of PAC 10 research universities with the California schools and Washington. They haven't been accepted into the AAU and most likely will never be accepted into the AAU. Their endowment/student is worse than OU's and will get worse as they grow towards their goal of 90K students--and money is what buys quality whether it's an endowed professorship or a scholarship to keep that kid with the 32 ACT from leaving the state. Consider too that--unlike Cincinnati--the Cleveland political and business establishment has always been very comfortable with OSU assuming the state "flagship" role while focusing locally on Case and the Cleveland Clinic. This notion that the NEO establishment will rally around the merged universities in a manner that they have NEVER done for the individual universities is a lot of wishful thinking. I am actually somebody that believes it was stupid public policy to have saved Akron as a stand-alone campus in the late 60s. It should have been merged with Can't State at the time. If that had been done, we very well might have something today similar to UC, but that ship sailed long ago. Today, there is fifty years of history of Akron as an independent public university. And while it faces serious problems and challenges, I am very skeptical that forming some merged 88K student diploma mill is the answer.
  5. Cincy, Louisville, West Virginia are all non-starters. B11's decision is driven by football needs, but it needs to take place in a manner compatible with their academic research consortium. That rules out any school--other than Notre Dame--who is not both an AAU member and ranked at least as high in the USN&WR rankings as the lowest B11 schools, which are currently Indiana, Iowa and MSU. Sure OSU would veto Cincy if it ever came to that, but unless Cincy climbs into the USN&WR top tier AND gets an AAU invite, it would never come down to that.Here's the best analysis that I've read on the subject from an Illini blogger. He comes to a rather surprising conclusion.Frank the Tank
  6. Not a huge poster on the board, but I have to concur. I was at the opener and back again yesterday. I put the stadium a notch higher than z-p does because I believe that with the right support/atmosphere it can be the best stadium in the MAC.Right now, I'm completely underwhelmed by the atmosphere and the U's stifling Big Brother mentality. This is not good and might be more than a little reason that attendance dropped by a third, despite having a beatable B10 foe visiting Info. Keep it up, and we'll quickly be seeing a 2/3 empty stadium rather quickly."Build it and they will come," will not work for Akron. Dr. P needs to start thinking along the lines of, "Build it, then give them reason to keep coming back."
  7. Does anyone know how Akron's number relates? Considering that the Columbus paper just reported that osu's average ACT passed 28, I don't think that Cant's number is exactly earth shattering and certainly not something that Akron shouldn't be able to match.While we do have open enrollment (which I support) our engineering and science departments should be pulling in a substantial amount of high achieving high freshmen to balance out the numbers.
  8. OU is NOT tier 1!!!!!If so, then where's tier 2 because it would seem to go directly from tier 1 to tier 3. USN&WR used to rank only down to 50. That was tier 1. Then, they had a Tier 2 that was grouped together alphabetically, then the tiers 3 and 4 also grouped alphabetically. Since they enlarged numeric rankings down to a little over 120, OU has always been at or near the bottom. While one can argue whether tier 1 is still only the top 50 or the top half of the numerically ranked schools (which would currently put the cutoff at 64), OU is nowhere close. OSU at 53 is arguably near the bottom of tier 1. Miami at 77 is in the middle of tier 2, and OU at 115 is near the bottom of tier 2And watch for UC to pass you shortly. THey're already attracting more very well qualified students (30+ ACT) than OU. They're just being held back at the bottom of the freshmen class by still having largely open admissions. In terms of research and grad programs, they passed OU by a long time ago, and they have a much larger endowment and better fundraising--not to mention the desire of the Cincy business community to build them up.Like I said, watch for UC to climb into the second tier within a couple of years while OU drops down into the 3rd.
  9. Don't worry about that ranking. 25% of a school's score is based upon reviews at ratemyprofessor.com Apparently, the people who put it together hate public universities and came up with a ranking that totally downgrades them. Michigan is ranked as the 200th university in the country far below little no-name private colleges that I never heard of.US News has its problems, but it seems to be a lot more relevant and respected than Forbes' (me too) effort.
  10. And I would counter that--unless you are strictly an elite liberal arts school like Kenyon or Oberlin--how strong your doctoral programs are is directly related to how good your faculty and how good your university is. Funny, OU actually offers MORE doctoral programs than Akron, yet the strength of Akron's gives Akron a higher overall ranking.Also two of the five categories are traditional liberal arts: humanities and social sciences. Two of the other three are traditional hard sciences and still traditional liberal arts & sciences: biological sciences and physical sciences. Only the fifth category of engineering could be said to be outside of the traditional arts & sciences disciplines. Which--despite the brain washing in Athens--are generally considered more indicative of a university's quality than a journalism program.The strength in engineering and the sciences is why I think you'll see both UC and Akron eventually move into the second tier (where OU is near the bottom at 115: not in the first tier, which is the top 50 or 60) and OU drop down into the third tier in the next few years.How good a school's business program is doesn't mean anything beyond how good their business program is. Here are some schools that--despite having world class business schools--don't even offer undergrad business majors. It doesn't seem to damage their undergraduate reputation too much.HarvardChicagoColumbiaSeveral University of California campusesYale
  11. That's not entirely true. The National Research Council conducts an extremely thorough survey and ranking of universities and individual departments. They take several years of data into account, which is why they come out less than once a decade. The next rankings are due out this year or the next I believe.Here's a link to the last ones that came out in the 90s. Our OU compatriots might not like what they see.http://www.stat.tamu.edu/~jnewton/nrc_rankings/nrc1.htmlAkron--79Miami--82OU--86
  12. I agree that he's well spoken. He is, after all, a university president. My point is that for some 17 year old 30 ACT kid, there's no impact or connection in listening to Dr. P run down a couple of points of pride in a 30 second spot, regardless of any cool graphics that are utilized. Those Michigan and Ohio State spots that I mentioned above really drive home a message--come here and be something special! And they do it in very creative ways. What can Akron do to reach through the tv and grab the attention of some honors student who might not think of considering Akron and get him to take the next step and check out the university's website or wikipedia article or ask his counselor about the school.Who is our most famous alumnus? Who is our most prominent faculty member? These are things that should be highlighted. Now, I don't know if the current commercials are the result of Dr. P's ego or the result of the producers' lack of imagination. Just saying, we could do better.
  13. I've seen some pretty good ones. The two that spring to mind are the Michigan commercial with the Apollo capsule orbiting the moon while playing Hail to the Victors and the Ohio State [ducks to avoid hurled bottles, rocks and tomatoes] commercial that featured an actor portraying a young Roy Lichtenstein dreaming about his future. Of course you have to have had an all-alumni moon mission or one of the most influential artists of the 20th century on your alumni lists to make those ideas work.My point, however, is that there are more catchy high-impact ways to advertise the university above and beyond putting the President in front of the camera to recite a quick couple of "points of pride." UA needs to think bigger. Think more like Leo Burnett and less like some local ad shop.
  14. I'm all in favor of doing the commercials, but the one so far has sucked. Why? Here's my two cents: Dr. P made it about himself first and the university second. I'm a supporter of Dr. Proenza, but let's face it; he's drawn to the spotlight (and camera and microphone) like a moth to a flame.This was clearly a situation where he should not have put himself front and center but, rather, let the commercial focus on the university itself. I'm sure that I'll get ripped by those among his supporters who, if he beheaded a puppy on live television, would argue what great publicity it was for UofA. The man, however, has an ego and a love of the spotlight. In this instance, it got in the way of what was best for Akron.
  15. Interesting. It seems like a big argument why state universities in general shouldn't be allowed to put their competition with each other ahead of common sense public policy and the interests of Ohio taxpayers. There has to be a rational way of allowing a reasonable degree of autonomy while still having enough central control that taxpayer dollars aren't wasted and stupid decisions, like putting a med school in Rootstown, end up being made.
  16. Not sure that Cleveland considers it small change, but they do have the Clinic and Case's med school. It truly might be a case of the two 800lb gorillas sitting at the table and saying, "we don't need a third med school/research hospital in the city." It's just that in Akron's case it's a potential jewel with no existing competition. One man's junk is another man's...While I think the idea of adding a 6th public medical school (even if it is on UA and Dr. P's wishlist) is absurd and a colossal pork-barrel waste of taxpayer dollars, I do believe that NEOCOM should be relocated to downtown Akron and should affiliate primarily with UA. The state got the general idea right when they founded NEOCOM. They just kind of screwed up on the particulars. Now would seem to be a window when a lot of things are in flux, and Akron should make the grab.
  17. No way the state ever lets Akron start their own medical school. Ohio already has 5 public medical schools including one in NEO. Ohio produces more medical school graduate each year than new jobs for them. It makes zero sense from a public policy perspective or from the perspective of wisely using scarce taxpayer dollars to start a 6th medical college. Affiliating with NEOCOM is probably the only way that Akron would be able to affiliate itself with a medical college.
  18. Wow! Enlightening site. So it would appear that not only did the refs give us the game but we are "classless" and disrespectful to America.A bunch of self-righteous, entitled mommy's boys who don't know how to take a beating with anything approaching dignity.
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