The University of California is cutting back on many things, but not useless diversity programs.
by Heather Mac Donald
California's budget crisis has reduced the University of California to near-penury, claim its spokesmen. "Our campuses and the UC Office of the President already have cut to the bone," the university system's vice president for budget and capital resources warned earlier this month, in advance of this week's meeting of the university's regents. Well, not exactly to the bone. Even as UC campuses jettison entire degree programs and lose faculty to competing universities, one fiefdom has remained virtually sacrosanct: the diversity machine.
Not only have diversity sinecures been protected from budget cuts, their numbers are actually growing. The University of California at San Diego, for example, is creating a new full-time "vice chancellor for equity, diversity, and inclusion." This position would augment UC San Diego's already massive diversity apparatus, which includes the Chancellor's Diversity Office, the associate vice chancellor for faculty equity, the assistant vice chancellor for diversity, the faculty equity advisors, the graduate diversity coordinators, the staff diversity liaison, the undergraduate student diversity liaison, the graduate student diversity liaison, the chief diversity officer, the director of development for diversity initiatives, the Office of Academic Diversity and Equal Opportunity, the Committee on Gender Identity and Sexual Orientation Issues, the Committee on the Status of Women, the Campus Council on Climate, Culture and Inclusion, the Diversity Council, and the directors of the Cross-Cultural Center, the Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Resource Center, and the Women's Center.
It's not surprising that the new vice chancellor's mission is rather opaque, given its superfluity.This expansion in the Diversity budget at UCSD follows that campus's 2010 noose hoax.
In other campus news, everybody in college (especially private colleges) gets As or Bs. The D is almost extinct and the C is endangered.My question is: Does grade inflation really matter? Who wins and who loses from grade inflation?
It appears that A- is the new B, B+ is the new C, and B is the new D. That wouldn't seem like much of a problem, at least if everybody had gotten the memo.
Perhaps the losers are parents whose views of GPAs are from pre-1968. Junior brings home a 3.00 GPA and they think he's doing pretty good, so they send in another check for another $50,000 worth of diversity hysteria college for Junior, but they don't realize that a 3.00 is more like a 1.00 in the bad old days. This is the 2010s, where everybody and everything that has to do with college is "amazing." (I went to a college-related event tonight and heard the word "amazing" at least a couple of dozen times.)
Look, Junior is happy with his grades, the college is happy, the deluded parents are happy, and Nintendo is happy that Junior has time to play several hours of video games per evening during the academic year. Everybody is amazingly happy, so why are you complaining?
But what happens after another generation of grade inflation?
I guess we'll need new varietals of A, like how bonds are rated, where A is pretty ho-hum, compared to Aa- or Aaa.